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I was wondering the same thing as Maralynn. Will emergency personnel actually transport my dogs to a boarding kennel if I ask or will they just send them to the shelter regardless of the letter? Also, I know all boarding kennels require vaccination proof, do you guys keep those records in with this letter? My dogs currently ride loose in my car but I am looking forward to graduation when I plan to purchase a van and strap down some varikennels and they will start riding in those!

 

 

My guess is the emergency peeps would be more likely to send them with AC to the shelter (because their job is to get the accident scene cleared up) but hopefully once impounded the info will allow shelter personnel to move them along to a kennel.

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In addition to the harnesses and crates and various other ways to keep your dogs safe when you travel, the most important is to know your limits. Stop if you get drowsy. I find that closing my eyes for 15 minutes followed by a quick walk or some stretches is a pretty good pick me up.

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I am curious since a lot of dog people seem to have bigger vehicles what type of safety measure do people use with cars? While i like the idea of wire kennels i havent found many that can fit in a car. So just curious to what other people use when their mode of transportation is a car.

 

I am planning on making up an emergency kit for the dogs though.

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I have this because I can't fit a large crate in my car. I bought the car after my van bit the dust, and I only had a mini Dachshund at the time so it wasn't an issue. I don't travel with my dog long distances, so as much as I prefer an airline crate, this will have to do.

 

 

729053989970CS1.jpg

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I have been wondering about changing my travel as well...my dogs ride loose in the back of the wagon with the rear bench folded down..but there simpley isnt enough room for the crate or seatbelt options, I have 8 dogs and travel with a min of 4 every single day, I can fit a max of 2 300's or 3 200's in my car..but even if a 300 was big enough for Gem(she just barly fits in a 500), thats still not enough crates for 4 or more dogs lol, and seatbelts lock into the seatbelt ends..if I lift the rear bench that means 3..STILL not enough for 4+ dogs! short of a new car (not an option) I am not sure what other options are :blink:

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I have been wondering about changing my travel as well...my dogs ride loose in the back of the wagon with the rear bench folded down..but there simpley isnt enough room for the crate or seatbelt options, I have 8 dogs and travel with a min of 4 every single day, I can fit a max of 2 300's or 3 200's in my car..but even if a 300 was big enough for Gem(she just barly fits in a 500), thats still not enough crates for 4 or more dogs lol, and seatbelts lock into the seatbelt ends..if I lift the rear bench that means 3..STILL not enough for 4+ dogs! short of a new car (not an option) I am not sure what other options are :blink:

 

I wonder if they make something for a seatbelt that you clip in that turns into two seatbelt coupon spots. That way you could double up ad your two harness on one spot

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Dear Travelers,

Ms. Border Collie Crazy wonders:

 

"I have been wondering about changing my travel as well...my dogs ride loose in the back of the wagon with the rear bench folded down..but there simpley isnt enough room for the crate or seatbelt options, I have 8 dogs and travel with a min of 4 every single day, I can fit a max of 2 300's or 3 200's in my car..but even if a 300 was big enough for Gem(she just barly fits in a 500), thats still not enough crates for 4 or more dogs lol, and seatbelts lock into the seatbelt ends..if I lift the rear bench that means 3..STILL not enough for 4+ dogs! short of a new car (not an option) I am not sure what other options are :blink:"

 

People giggle at my solution but it works: My 1989 Mercury Colony Park Station wagon holds 4 dogs (2 in 300's. one in a 200 plus a loose dog behind the partition that divides the back seat from the wayback. There's a trunk under the floor and room for five big adults plus one shorty and more luggage if, unlike Mitt Romney, you put it on the roof.

 

If there's just two humans (plus shorty), with the rear seat folded down you can fit six dogs, five in crates .

 

When you're done giggling: You can buy a defunct geezer's 80k 90 or 91 for 500-1500$, necessary mods will be about another grand and these big wagons are good for 200 k. I've had mine for ten years and added 230 k to the 80k already on it.

 

It gets 20-21 mpg at 70-75 mph and is like sitting in your living room going down the interstate.

 

Small cars with humungus batteries are neither economical nor ecologically sound.

 

Donald McCaig

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I have been wondering about changing my travel as well...my dogs ride loose in the back of the wagon with the rear bench folded down..but there simpley isnt enough room for the crate or seatbelt options, I have 8 dogs and travel with a min of 4 every single day, I can fit a max of 2 300's or 3 200's in my car..but even if a 300 was big enough for Gem(she just barly fits in a 500), thats still not enough crates for 4 or more dogs lol, and seatbelts lock into the seatbelt ends..if I lift the rear bench that means 3..STILL not enough for 4+ dogs! short of a new car (not an option) I am not sure what other options are :blink:

 

Do you have car seat clips or cargo tie downs in you car? You could use a harness on the dogs and clip them to those. Not quite as secure as a seat belt clip, but should prevent the dogs from getting thrown through/out of the car in case of an accident.

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Shayna,

At the very least, you should look into a sturdy barrier that can be permanently mounted in your vehicle to separate the dog riding area from your area. The reason for this is that in an accident the dogs could become projectiles, and protecting yourself, as well as the dogs from going through the windshield, would at least be some sort of minimal safety if crating isn't an option. Maybe combine a barrier with harnesses and tiedowns (or anything else sturdy in the back of the vehicle that you could attach the dog's harness to), would be a solution.

 

J.

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I was able to cart six dogs in a Toyota Camry when my van broke down. Three of those I even managed to get into crates. The back seats flip down, and I was able to put two 200's and one wire crate about that size across the back seats. One dog in each floorboard in the back, and then one dog in the front seat. It was not the most optimal arrangement ever but it worked. I think I could have gotten an additional 200 in the front passenger seat (no airbags in that older car). Nick and Linc can't get into a 200, but the rest of them can.

 

I use plastic airline crates in my minivan, and bungee/tether/strap crates in using the little metal posts in the floor that used to clip my seats in. When I'm stacking crates I bungee crates together AND to the floor. Aside from that random Camry situation they don't ever ride loose like that. A situation like we're talking about here is one of my worst nightmares.

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My current 2 dog travel set up

 

7396345280_82e331c943.jpg

 

A 30"x19"x21" for Kenzi and a 24"x18"x20" for Kipp (he's small...)

 

What I like about this - it's simple and fits in the cargo area of my Vue. It's a snug fit so the crates can't move around. Kipp's crate is on a shelf so it fits over the wheel well - which means I can stuff things under it! The one downside is I'm not sure how safe it would be if I were to be rear ended at a high speed. FWIW, I could also fit two more crates in there is I folded the seats down, or I could fit 2 36" crates in there instead.

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I got both kennels from ebay a couple years apart. I can't remember which seller they came from but they are heavier than the average wire crates sold at pet big box stores/walmart etc. and they were cheaper too even with shipping. And yes - they have double doors one in the front and one on the side

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I have the same setup as Maralynn but my 24" crate fits right on the floor of the xterra. If I wanted another 30" one, I'd have to do the same setup to get it over the wheel well. I have 1 dog in each of those crates and my old one on the back seat. If we're going anywhere other than to work or a walk, I will use a seatbelt harness on her.

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For those asking about if Emergency personnel would take dogs to a Kennel instead of a Shelter, unless you lived in the town and had previous arrangements with either a Vet clinic or boarding facility I would say it is unlikely. I am an Animal Control Officer in a small upscale city in my town and in cases of accidents where the owner is transported to the hospital we generally take them to our sheltering facility (which happens to be a nice Veterinary clinic that boards dogs, so our shelter is a Veterinary boarding facility). I have taken dogs to their home in our city (at their request even though I have told them they may want their canine examined by a veterinarian) or I would be more than happy to take them to their Veterinarian if it were relatively close. If the accident is severe, my preference is to transport them to our Veterinarian for an exam. I absolutely contact anyone the owner wants me to as soon as possible.

 

It is amazing that accidents that have totaled cars and sent owners to the hospital, don't seem to injure the dogs (who are mostly unsecured in the vehicle)

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Re taking care of dogs if driver is incapacitated: I travel a LOT around the intermountain west, usually in my small RV. My emergency info has a list of names and phone numbers of people who have agreed to take my animals if needed. I put the person's name and city, so at least an ACO or police would have a clue who is nearby. When I've traveled cross-country, I've contacted a few folks I know along my route, or others traveling the same general direction at that time, if I could add their names to my list. It gets kinda long, but I'd rather have a shelter or vet have many options - if the first one doesn't answer, or can't help, at least there are other alternatives! I have no doubt that at first, dogs might be taken to a vet or a shelter - which is fine in that "emergency time." But giving those folks some options to move the dogs along to someone who will take them off their hands seems like a better solution for the longer term.

 

We all just do the best we can with what we've got and can afford - but discussions like this will hopefully go a long way in further our animals' safety.

 

As an aside...I don't often leave my dogs unattended in a car (in my case, Honda Element; 2 SUV-sized crates in back, strapped* to a platform** which raises them above the wheel wells). But on occasion when I need to make a stop (relatively brief - not hours!) and it's too hot to leave them in a closed car....I have two large padlocks, kept in the console, and will padlock the crates shut and leave the back hatch open. Yeah, someone could theoretically cut the straps and take the crates....but I doubt anyone would go to this much trouble, OR not be caught doing it!

 

* Straps: cargo straps/ratchet straps are good and strong, but frankly, at least for me, a PITA to use. I get 1.5" wide "river straps" - any whitewater rafting store or company will carry these. VERY strong and adjustable - but beware, they will eventually break down (after years) in the heat and/or sun.

 

** Platform: The SUV crates would not fit in on floor level. My plywood platform has slots cut into it, and straps thru the slots hold the platform to the floor (tie downs in the car provided). Then, the crates are strapped to the platform. If I ever get a flat tire....I'm just calling road service. No way I'd get the spare out! :-)

 

diane

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Thanks to the OP for starting this thread. After all of this talk about safety, I made an attempt to get my #400 Vari Kennel into the back of my car. I honestly didn't think it would fit. I did have to pull the front passenger seat all the way up, but I was able to get the crate in and strap it down. I took Hannah to my daughter's today to run with the Greyhounds, and I have to say I felt so much better having her safely crated for the drive.

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We all just do the best we can with what we've got and can afford - but discussions like this will hopefully go a long way in further our animals' safety.

 

 

Yes, this. And I think that trying *something* is always better than trying *nothing*. I'm really surprised that I know a couple of "dog people" who have loose dogs riding in their cars, and over long distances to trials and such, too. :(

 

Here's my current set-up. Not ideal if I had all 4 dogs, as they would have to double up. But I usually only have one dog with me, sometimes two. The back seat doesn't lie flat, so my husband built the little platform, so that the crates are level. I know some people prefer the airline crates, but I refuse to obstruct my view like that, which is dangerous in itself. I plan to replace the bungees with cargo straps as soon as possible.

 

What I like is that the crates are right behind the driver's seat. In other words, in the passenger compartment, not crumple zones. I would not want the crates to ever be right in front of the back door if I could help it.

 

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Now I'd really like some narrow crates like Maralynn has...I might downsize vehicles later this year and they would be great.

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Wow, I wish I could have a setup like that, Paula. I can only fit two crates in the back of my Tucson, and they are put in perpendicular, not side by side. It's been really bothering me that I have a crate that is pretty much right at the back of my car. That's Ollie's crate and he would be in the crumple zone in a bad rear-end crash. If I'm only traveling with Ollie, I'll put him in the crate that is behind the front seats. But, when I'm traveling with both Charlie and Ollie, Charlie is in the one behind the seats and Ollie is in the smaller crate at the back of the car. Unfortunately, since Charlie is a bit of a behemoth, I need a bit of a bigger crate for him, and there's more room for a bigger crate up near the front seats. I use airline-style plastic crates, which I feel are safer, though I hate that they are like little ovens. Every time Steve loads the dogs into my car, he says, "OK, time to get into your hot boxes." What I really need is a different car. Can someone loan me some money??

 

ETA: Paula, I'm also at a loss at understanding why "dog people" would let their dogs ride loose in their cars. I have a good friend (who you met recently) who lets her dog ride loose in her car, even though she could easily fit a crate in her car. I've tried to *delicately* discuss this with her on numerous occasions, and I get nowhere. I have a hard time understanding her thought path.

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