Driver Knowledge Tests

Simple ways to protect the interior of your car when travelling with pets

Travelling with your pets can be very satisfying, especially if you are going on a road trip. For many pet owners, leaving their pets at home can be upsetting. Bringing one’s pets along allows one to watch them, take care of them, and allays any fears or concerns about them. However, travelling with pets can also be notoriously difficult. Some pets are hard to manage, and others leave fur and dirt all over the interior of one’s car.

This article will explain a few ways that you can protect the interior of your car when you are travelling with your pets.

Fabric protector

If you are going to take your pet out in your car, then you will want to apply a fabric protector to your car’s seats. The most popular brand of fabric protector is Scotchgard, and when using Scotchgard, you should apply it to your seat and allow it to dry before letting your pet in the car. If they come into contact with the spray, it could cause an allergic reaction or harm them somehow. Fabric protector keeps your seats looking brand new, regardless of whether pets have been on them or not.

Cage them

If you are travelling with a cat, rabbit, or any small animal, then you should keep them in their cage when you are driving. If you allow them out of their cage, then they will not only behave uncontrollably because they will likely be scared, but they will cause a lot of damage to your vehicle’s interior. This is especially true for cats, who hate riding in cars. There is also a chance that if you allow a small animal out into your car’s interior, that they will find their way into a small crevice and you won’t be able to get them out.

Car hammock

For dogs, it’s worth considering a car hammock. This is suited to pet owners who prefer having their dogs ride in the back seat, instead of the trunk. Car hammocks are affordable and easy to set up and will cover the entire back section of your car, protecting it from your dog’s hair, drool, and nails. Some dogs wear seat belts when they are riding in cars, so make sure that the hammock you are buying has openings for your car’s seatbelts, so that you can clip your dog in.

Seat covers

If your dog rides up front with you, unfortunately, you can’t get them a hammock. You can however get them a seat cover. A front seat cover will allow your dog to sit up front, without destroying your seats. These covers have similar features to hammocks. You must ensure that the cover has a seatbelt opening, so that you can fasten your dog to the seat. This is especially important if they are riding up front, because you don’t want your dog to start bouncing around and jumping upfront when you are driving. This can be very dangerous.

Cargo cover

If your dog rides in the trunk, then you will need a cargo cover. It can be extremely difficult cleaning up a dog’s fur when they have been riding in a trunk, because they leave so much of it behind. A cargo cover is a great solution for preventing your dog’s fur from getting everywhere. Cargo covers come in a variety of sizes and are flat covers that attach to the corners of your trunk. They are usually padded, so allow your dog to ride comfortably. If you have a cat and are travelling a long distance [and a cage isn’t suitable], then cargo covers also work for them.

Seat belt harness

If you are going to have a small animal riding in your car with you and it won’t be being caged, then a seat belt harness is very important. A seat belt harness will restrain your pet and keep them safe and prevent them from making a mess in your vehicle. Seat belt harnesses are also important for larger animals, like dogs. A seat belt harness will ensure that your dog can’t bounce around and cause damage to your car’s interior, and it will keep them safe if you have to break suddenly or you are involved in a car accident. Your pet could be seriously injured if you do have to suddenly brake, so investing in one of these harnesses is an investment into their health, and into the future. If you are travelling with your pets in the car, then you need to protect your interior. Cars are expensive, and so too is repairing their interiors. If your pet damages the inside of your car, it could cost you thousands to repair.

Darren is an expert on driving and transport, and is a member of the Institute of Advanced Motorists

Posted in Advice