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Sunday, August 26, 2012

See Spot Travel. . . Safely!

Seatbelts Save Lives

Recently, there has been an independent report on the safety testing of various dog car harnesses from the Center for Pet Safety. This report took four brands of harnesses and tested them for crashworthiness. According to the report, all four failed in some way or another. Before you panic, there are a few things you should know regarding this report.

1) The report does not state which four brands were tested. They won't name the brands, probably for liability reasons, and because they are not out to attack the manufacturers of harnesses. Their primary concern is to address the need for consistent measurable standards which can be used industry-wide. As it stands now, there are no existing standards in place. Each manufacturer has outsourced testing from a different institution which makes comparing brands and safety nearly impossible. Whether their testing methods are effective cannot yet be determined because of the lack of standards.

There are numerous brands of car harnesses out there which claim to have testing. So how can you tell if a brand is one of these four "failed" brands? Or how can you tell if the testing method used by a particular manufacturer is best? Here are some tips on what to look for:
  • Does the manufacturer reflect crash testing information?
  • Does the manufacturer give a detailed analysis on the types of testing they have done?
  • Does the manufacturer constantly look for ways to improve their product?
If the answer to any of these is yes, then you are probably looking at a reliable manufacturer who genuinely cares about the safety of your pet.

2) No dog car safety harness is guaranteed to work. Seat belts for people don't save everyone's life. But it has been proven that you are more likely to survive a car accident if you are wearing a seat belt. The same is likely to be true for a pet car harness.

3) There are several brands of dog seat belts which claim to have completed testing on their products. Many of these companies are continuing to improve their products. The report from the Center for Pet Safety does acknowledge that they may have tested harnesses which have since been improved by the manufacturer.

There are so many brands of pet car harnesses that we cannot possibly list them all here. The brands we know something about include Bergan, Champion, Pet Buckle, Coastal Easy Rider, Sherpa to Go, Kurgo Tru-Fit Smart Harness, Snoozer Harness, and Roadie Ruff Rider. Of these, three were willing to discuss the report from the Center for Pet Safety:

·    Pet Buckle has confirmed that their harness was not one of the four tested by the Center for Pet Safety. They also have a crash test video where you can see that their harness did not break. And Pet Buckle uses the same material as seat belts for people.

·     Bergan does not have a crash test video but they have published in detail the testing methods they use and confirm the strength which their dog seat belts can handle.

·     Kurgo Tru-Fit has a crash test video which confirms their harnesses do not break.

      If you are concerned about the safety of a dog car harness, remember the three important questions to consider. And take into account that some form of safety has got to be better than none at all. A dog in a car accident is not only in danger of being hurt by being tossed around, but they could also escape the car and run away or get hit by another car. For your pet's safety, please keep your dog restrained whether by a dog car harness or even a secured pet travel crate.

 Sources: Bergan, Kurgo, and Pet Buckle 


Unknown said...

WOW!! Your Information is really very nice i love it.
Thank you for post.

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Christina Berry said...

I'm amazed at how many people don't travel safely with their pets. Thanks for this great post!


JZ said...

I recently bought my dog a harness and he seems to like it. We used to use the one that goes around the neck but it seemed to hurt him.

Cat litter coupons said...

This is a really excellent article. It was helpful to find this.

Unknown said...

It true that we need to take more care of our pets when we are traveling and by using these simple tips and tricks we can easily manage our traveling with pest. Thanks for sharing a good piece of tips with us.

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Jen deHaan said...

I would love to have something like this:

But it's a little rich for my blood... excluding the fact I'd have to buy a new car to fit it in :)

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