7 Automotive Pet Products to Add to Your Car, According to Consumer Reports

While some vehicles are designed to cater to humans and dogs, other cars need a few accessories to make them perfect for traveling with your pet, so you both stay safe. Consumer Reports offer a list of items that you should consider when driving with your animal. Here are seven of the best pet products you can add to make your trip as safe as it can be for your dog, cat, or other furry friend.

1. Pet carrier/crate

A cat in a vehicle pet carrier, a type of automotive pet product
A cat in a pet carrier in a vehicle |

When traveling with a pet, you’ll want them to stay in a designated spot in your car. Experts usually recommend the animal remain in the back seat to prevent them from getting in the way of your driving. However, should you find yourself in an accident, your pet might get injured, or they may run away from the vehicle, traumatized by what just happened. 

A pet carrier or crate will help the animal stay in one place while keeping them safe and secure even if you get into a collision with another vehicle or object. Carriers come in a few different sizes and can cost anywhere from $100 to $200, depending on the size your pet needs. 

2. Car pet harness

Having your pet in the back of the vehicle will keep you from getting distracted while driving. However, should you get into an accident, the animal could turn into a projectile, thrown forward right into you or a passenger. It’s especially dangerous if the pet is a large breed that weighs quite a bit. 

Seat belts in vehicles are not designed for animals, only for people. To keep your pet safe, you need to place a harness on the animal, which will click into the car’s seat belt. Prices for harnesses like this can run from $75 to $175.

3. Loading ramps 

Sometimes, older dogs can’t move around quite as efficiently as they used to, so a ramp like this would help them walk into and out of a vehicle. This way, you don’t have to worry about picking them up to put them inside since they might be a bit heavy to carry. Puppies and smaller dogs also struggle with jumping into a car too high for them to reach.  

A ramp often works by unfolding them and placing them where needed. Once your pet gets into the vehicle, you can take the ramp, fold it up again, and store it in the back so it’s ready the next time you need it. According to Canine Journal, pet ramps run $100 to $150. 

4. Travel bed

Travel beds are perfect when you journey with your pet. They help keep the animal in one place while you drive, but they can also help keep them calm. Like a child with a favorite teddy bear, some pets are more relaxed in unfamiliar situations when they have items they use at home, like their beds, according to Consumer Reports

You can also purchase one to use only when you travel. If you’re out and about in an RV, you can buy a travel bed to keep in the RV all year round, so you don’t have to worry about bringing it with you each time. Prices should run about $20 to $30.

5. Car cabin camera

If you have to travel for a short period of time and can’t go with your pet, you might want to consider a pet camera. These cameras will let you check in on your dogs and cats periodically, so you can still stay connected with them. Some brands, like Furbo, will let you see what your pet is up to, talk to them through the unit, from your phone, and even throw them a treat from afar. 

However, in some cases, even a simple home security camera system will do as well. Just don’t expect to hand them a treat through it. Pricing varies with these cameras, but you can pay about $80 or so for a home security camera.

6. GPS tracker for your pet

If you take your dog with you on a well-deserved vacation, one piece of equipment you might want to consider taking is a GPS tracker for your pet. If your dog takes off in an unfamiliar area, it may not be able to find its way back to you easily. Technology like this will connect to the collar and track the dog’s whereabouts while you use an app on your phone to try and find your pet. 

You won’t pay all that much for it, depending on where you go to buy one. Prices can range from $30 to $50. That’s pretty good for a unit that will geolocate your pet every few seconds so you can find them quickly without too much fuss.

7. Pet vacuum

Pets cause messes in your car as well as your home. They shed their fur, drag in dirt and debris, and leave muddy footprints on the seats. Cleaning it up isn’t easy unless you use a vacuum specifically created to clean up after animals. 

Pet vacuums offer enough power to pick up any animal fur, no matter how long or short the hairs may be. Sometimes you can find a regular vacuum that isn’t marketed for cleaning pet fur but works just as well. You can expect to pay approximately $150 to $250 for one that will keep your car clean.

Many products on the market will help you travel safely with your pet or keep them safe if they remain at home. With the seven items we just talked about, you can be assured that your pet will be safe no matter where your destination is. 

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