How to Safely Drive with Your Pet in the Car

dog riding in back seat of car looking out window

Note: Although this is cute, dogs should never stick their heads out of the car windows when you’re driving! It’s a safety hazard!

Our pets love a good car ride as much as we do but not everyone transports their pet the right way. With warmer weather coming up, we know you’ll be taking your four-legged friend out on the road with you, so we want to help refresh your memory on how to let your dog travel with you safely. To help us out, Philip Fulton, Manager of Community Outreach at the Calgary Humane Society, is here to give you a few tips!


Calgary Humane Society's Dos and Don'ts When Driving With Your Pet


DO secure pets in a crate, carrier or confined to the back seat for your and their safety. Though some dogs love riding in cars and can do so without too much excitement, care should be given when travelling with excitable/anxious dogs or ones you are unfamiliar with as they could pose a danger if they distract the driver.

DON’T allow dogs to ride freely in the open bed of a pick-up. Dogs have died from this and it is against Calgary by-laws.

DO travel with extra water, a bowl, poop bags, leash and towel when on road trips and take the dog out for a bit of a stretch; your dog needs those pit stops as much as you do!

DON’T allow pets to ride in the driver’s lap where they could obstruct vision, interfere with steering or otherwise impair driving.

DO feed your pet a few hours before a road trip. This will help prevent them from getting carsick and will overall make their experience that much better.

DON’T leave pets unattended in a car when it’s too hot (or too cold). Even with the windows down, temperatures can rise very quickly causing serious health concerns or even death.


To make car trips easier for the both of you, we’ve listed some great car accessories to look into for your pet.

Backseat covers and hammocks:


SUV cargo covers:


Steps and ramps:


If you have some great pet travel tips that we didn’t mention, please share below!

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