It’s common for owners to let their dogs have free reign in the car while driving without realizing how dangerous this is for them and their dogs. Thankfully, the pet industry is ever-evolving and coming out with new things that keep our dogs happy and safe.
If you’re headed on a road trip with your fur baby or plan to take them with you everywhere, the best option is to ensure they are securely in one place. There’s no better way to do that than with a car-safe crate.
Depending on your dog type, the back seat or trunk may be the best option. However, if you have a small dog, you may even be able to keep them safely in their crate right up front with you. You can even open the window and let them feel the breeze on their face, just as they like.
How to Choose the Best Dog Crate for Car Backseat?
When choosing a travel crate for your dog, there are various things to consider. The first thing you should learn is what size crate is best. Where standard house crates should have room for your dog to stand up and turn around, this is not the case when the dog will be traveling in a vehicle.
The car-safe kennel should not be cramped, but having too much space to move around can be more dangerous for your dog in an accident. It would be best if you had a separate travel crate for driving; do not try to use a regular house crate or even an airline crate. If you are worried about your dog’s need to stretch his legs, take frequent breaks on your road trip.
The second thing to consider is the safety level of your car-safe crate. If safety is your goal, there are many reinforced wall options to ensure that if you were to get into an accident, the kennel is unlikely to break or crack, causing injury to your pet. The less room they have to get tossed around should the crate be projected, the better.
You also want to ensure your pet is comfortable, especially on long journeys. It should always have proper ventilation to ensure your dog does not overheat. You may want to consider a mesh or softer crate option or placing a dog bed or crate mat in the crate to ensure they are nice and cozy.
Best Dog Crate Brands
There are so many crates on the market that it can be overwhelming to choose. Below are the top 3 dog crate brands of 2022 for safety and comfort, along with our top pick for each brand.
Gunner Kennels was founded in 2013 by Addison Edmonds, who named the company after his chocolate Lab, Gunner. Edmonds wanted to find the best kennel for his dog, but when he couldn’t, he decided to build it himself.
All Gunner Kennels are sourced and manufactured in the US, have a four or 5-star safety rating, and are crash tested. They are one of the most expensive travel crates on the market due to the extensive testing and the 125 parts required to assemble each crate.
The G1 Kennel has a size option for dogs small to large, is 5-star safety certified, and is double rotomolded. It offers 2x impact protection and a lifetime warranty. We can say, without question, that this is the top-of-the-line dog crate for car backseat.
Lucky Duck was founded in 1995, focusing on Duck and other fowl hunting needs. For many, this means a safe way to transport their hunting dogs. Lucky Duck’s kennels are 5-star safety certified and made here in the US.
They are well ventilated, easy to clean, and can withstand up to 4,000 pounds of force.
The Lucky Kennel is more lightweight than it seems but still highly durable. It has convenient handles and non-slip rubber feet for transporting your pet easily. It also has a pitched floor that allows water or other liquids to drain quickly and a reversible door for easy access.
- Lucky Duck Kennels are proudly made in the USA, and are built for years of use. 5 Star Crash Test Rated from the Center For Pet Safety.
- One-piece roto molded kennel is durable yet lightweight (38lbs.), and includes heavy duty lift handles, powder-coated tie downs, and non-slip rubber feet
- Well ventilated with ventilation holds to keep your dog cool on hot days, and pitched floor is elevated to run water into drain channels on each side of the kennel
- Injection molded reversible door can be flipped in a matter of seconds, corner locking pins for added safety, and the locking paddle latch will keep your dog safe while only requiring one hand for opening and closing
- Exterior dimensions: 32.5" x 22.5" x 24.5". Interior dimensions: 30.25" x 20.5" x 22"
This kennel is one of the best backseat dog crates on the market.
EliteField Pet Products has been around since 2004 and offers a wide array of good-quality products for many different types of pets. They pride themselves on comfort for pets and convenience for you. They offer soft, comfortable dog crates that can be good for travel.
The EliteField 3 Door Folding Soft Dog Crate is an affordable option for those who don’t want to spend a fortune on a travel crate. This crate comes in many sizes but is best recommended for smaller dogs. The frame is made of steel, and the kennel is exceptionally well ventilated and lightweight.
- Size: 42" long x 28" wide x 32" high; 2" wider and 4" higher than most other brand 42" soft crates, so the EliteField soft crate makes your dog feel more spacious; fully assembled; set-up and fold-down in seconds, no tools needed.
- The crate frame is made of strong steel tube; the crate cover is made of high quality durable 600D fabric and hex mesh fabric; a well ventilated, stylish, lightweight and durable crate
- Three mesh doors (on the top, front, and side) for convenience and for sunlight and breathability; two accessory pockets on the top and side; removable and washable cover and bed
- Free carrying bag and fleece bed included; a handle and hand carrying straps on the crate, hand carrying straps and adjustable padded shoulder strap on the carrying bag allow for many carrying options; folded crate with just 3" height for easy transport and storage
- 2 Year Warranty from EliteField, a New York-based Pet Product Manufacturer. The "EliteField" brand is ranked #1 under Amazon's "Soft Dog Crate" category. This can be seen through searching for "Soft Dog Crate" on Amazon. Product Quality Guarantee, 100% Money-Back Guarantee, Customer Satisfaction Guarantee (See important information in "Product Description" section below)
It includes a bag with a padded strap so you can take this crate with you anywhere.
While traveling with your pet secured in a crate is the safest option, this may not be for everyone. Many other products can keep your pet secured and safe in your vehicle without placing them in a crate.
Despite seatbelts being mandatory for humans in many states across the US, our canines do not generally have that protection. There are many seatbelt options, such as a harness seatbelt, zipline seatbelt, or attachment belt. Many people do not even know this is an option, but it is!
The COOYOO 3-piece doggie seatbelt is a simple, inexpensive way to keep your dog tethered to the seat. It’s comfortable and prevents your dog from being tossed around when braking harshly or in tight turns. In addition, the straps are adjustable, so you can decide exactly how much freedom fido has.
- DURABILITY - No matter how well-trained your pup may be, there is no guarantee that it won’t tug, pull, and chew on the seat belt during the ride. The material of our seat belt be extra durable, made of high density nylon fabric to ensure durability, and the metal elements of the construction to be sturdy enough not to unbuckle or snap at the worst possible moment.
- ELASTIC BUFFER DESIGN - Restraint with elastic buffer could keep your dog from sudden brake or sharp turn, keep your dogs away from possible choking risk, allows pets active freely in certain space without the feeling of rigid control.
- TANGLE-FREE & ADJUSTED - The dog seat belt can be easily adjusted from 22 to 31 inches. A sturdy, aluminium alloy clasp swivels 360 degrees to accommodate comfort in case he wants to sit, stand or lay down,so your dog can rotate and move around without ever getting tangled.
- CONVENIENCE & UNIVERSAL FITTING - The universal design allows you to clip and unclip your pooch in seconds with no fiddling around.The tab on the seatbelt clip is 0.79 inch in width, which is compatible with most vehicles.Please make sure to check your buckle's size and compatibility before order.
- FREE GIFT & 100% MONEY BACK GUARANTEE - The dog seatbelt comes with a collapsible travel bowl for pet. our goal is to design premium quality pet supplies that make life easier and more comfortable for pets and their families.Your satisfaction is our top most priority.Contact us for refund or exchange if you are not happy with our product for any reason.
Doggie Car Seats
There is a wide array of size, comfort, and safety levels. For smaller dogs, keeping them safe can be as simple as putting them in a car seat, much like a child. Just be sure to check the weight limit before deciding if the seat is the right side for your dog.
The K&H Pet Products Bucket Booster Pet Seat is a plush comfortable option that your small dog will love. It attaches to the seat belt in your car and has additional straps that keep your dog firmly in place. In addition, the cover is removable and washable for easy cleanup of any accidents.
- DOG CAR SEAT WITH A VIEW: Booster pet car seat elevates pet(s) for a better view, while the firm foam bolster around the edge keeps dogs in a safe and controlled spot for a distraction-free drive
- SAFETY FIRST: Dog booster seat securely buckles in place with the seat belt hidden under the removable booster cushion (includes two adjustable security tethers attach to pet harness) and the bolster secures pet to the doggie car seat
- EASY PET TRAVELING: Doggy car seat is great for small dogs as it dips down in the front so your pet can easily climb in and out for easy buckling up; Pet booster seat for car is perfect for small and medium dogs, puppies, cats and kittens
- EASY CLEAN-UP: Removable, washable, plush quilted fleece cover ensures pet comfort and easy maintenance of dog car carrier
- PET CAR SEAT SIZING: The contoured back is designed to fit snugly in the front or back seat of any size car: small bucket booster is recommended for small pets and large booster can fit up to two small pets or one medium sized breed
A durable pet barrier is an excellent option for those who want their dog to have more freedom while minimizing the risk of distraction while driving. You can place a pet barrier in the back seat or trunk area to prevent your dog from jumping over into an area where it shouldn’t be. Several types of pet barriers exist, including plastic, metal, or mesh.
The PetSafe Happy Ride Metal Pet Barrier is a sturdy, adjustable pet barrier that fits almost any vehicle. The spaced-out bars allow you to watch your pet while ensuring they stay in their safe space. It is easy to assemble and disassemble, with no tools required.
- DECREASED DRIVER DISTRACTION: The metal dog barrier keeps your furry friend from inviting themselves into the passenger seats so you can focus on the road
- NO TOOLS NEEDED: Easily assemble the metal barrier with just your hands
- SIMPLE TO SETUP: Tension secures the barrier in place and rubberized caps keep it from slipping during use; rattle-free design of the metal barrier reduces noise on road trips
- ADJUSTABLE SIZING: Slide the dog barrier to adjust it to fit backseat or cargo areas in your car or SUV; measures 32-49 in H x 33-57 in W
- BACK SEAT VISIBILITY: Sturdy, metal barrier allows you to have clear visibility into the back of your vehicle
The Dangers of Unrestrained Pets in Vehicles
Thousands of dogs die in car accidents yearly, and sadly, most of those deaths could have been prevented. According to recent studies, only 55 percent of Americans restrain their pet while driving. Many owners state that their dog is too well behaved to need a kennel or be secured in the car.
The truth is, dogs are unpredictable, and the crash risk increases over double when they are left to their own devices. There are numerous ways a loose dog could cause an accident, including:
- Nudging the driver
- Stepping on gearshift
- Stepping on the emergency brake
- Leaning too far out the window
- Jumping the seats
If any of these unpredictable events were to occur and cause a crash, an unrestrained dog would likely be badly injured or killed even in a minor collision. Even stopping to pet your dog for a moment can be a huge distraction while driving and should be avoided.
It’s also important to remember that if your dog causes an accident, you could be held liable for thousands of dollars in medical bills, property damage, and more.
It’s clear that the end result is not worth the risks when it comes to letting your dog roam free in the car. However, it is worth the money and research necessary to find the best dog crates for your vehicle to ensure that everyone is safe and secure.
We love our pets, and we know they love their car rides. As the owner, it’s your job to ensure you, your dog, and your passengers stay as safe as possible. There are many options available to see to it that they can still enjoy their travels and stay safe at the same time.
We’ve listed some of the best dog kennels for your car’s back seat and many alternative options. So find one that works best for you and your pet, so you can continue enjoying the many car rides.