Archive for October, 2013
Friday is here again. Let’s do the happy dance! What’s the happy dance? It’s the same dance your dog does when it is time for dinner. 🙂 This week’s Follow Up Friday is hosted by Jodi with Heart Like a Dog and Linda with 2 Brown Dawgs. After you see what we have been up to this week, visit their blogs and other dog blogs from the follow up blog hop below.
Last Week’s Follow Up
We Live in a Flat says they can’t use the new ClickIt Utility because they have an older car without the latchbars. Guess what? My car, the one that was recently rear-ended, is an older car too. It has no latchbars either. So if Maya rides in my car, I can only secure her through the back of the ClickIt harness. I can’t use the two side tethers to secure her. Despite that, Maya is still very secure, as secure as she was in the other dog car harness brands. However, her security is not as good as it would be if she was using all three connections. But it is still secure and I am a firm believer that something is better than nothing, especially when using nothing means Maya will be all over the car and distracting me when I drive.
Canine epilepsy was from a post back in May, but the comment is from this past week. Dawn Frost with MR2BC Travel Logs asks, “By the way, what do you do to keep Pierson safe in your vehicle in case he seizes. We have a backseat hammock for Morgan. The hammock keeps him from getting caught in cracks and crevices.”
The hammock is an excellent idea to keep Morgan from getting caught on something and from falling onto the floor. Pierson wears a dog car harness to keep him from falling onto the floor if he seizes. The Kurgo Backseat Bridge also helps keep him from falling onto the floor. And I suppose the pet car seat cover keeps him from getting caught on anything. Who would have thought that pet travel safety products can also help protect a dog with canine epilepsy?
Comparing Pet Seat Belts
Mollie’s Dog Treats says, “I’ve got to get Mollie a new seat belt, the one she has is fraying as we use it for walking too and has been washed so many times where she goes in the mud LOL. XXOOXX“
Yes, you definitely should get a new safety harness if the other one is fraying. You don’t want it to break.
Roxy the Traveling Dog says, “Torrey is in the back seat and lays down, sits up, changes positions. I can’t see her loving a harness at all.”
So very true for many dogs. Pet seat belts will take away their freedom and could make them uncomfortable. I could say, too bad. If we make our children wear seat belts even though they are more comfortable without them, then we should make our dogs too. But it is not just about comfort. A dog that does not like to be restrained will likely try to get out of the harness. Sorry folks, but there is no such thing as an escape-proof seat belt. A determined dog can get out of them. And the harder they try to get out, the more likely they are to hurt themselves and defeat the purpose of the safety device.
Training might help. Maya had to be trained to get used to hers. I have to work with her again with the very restrictive ClickIt Utility. She had more freedom with the other brands, but this one is something she is not used to at all and I don’t want her to fight it and get out of it. There are also other pet travel safety products such as a secured pet travel carrier or a car seat for dogs (which Roxy is considering).
We had a number of friends tell us their dogs already wear pet seat belts. Let’s put our paws together for Snoopy with Snoopy’s Dog Blog, Shiner with Pawsitively Pets, and Dexter with Fidose of Reality! A lot of people loved Clover’s photo from Wordless Wednesday so here are a couple others of her:
ClickIt Utility Giveaway
Don’t forget to enter the giveaway posted on October 5th to win the new ClickIt Utility. If you’ve already entered, don’t forget you can submit more entries on the rafflecopter by tweeting daily.
Thanks for joining us for this Follow Up Friday. Thank you Jodi and Linda for hosting the blog hop. Enjoy your weekend and see you all next week! 🙂
This is our friend, Clover. She comes over to our house for a play date every once in a while. She is the only dog, besides Maya, that my other dog Pierson gets along with. Here is a photo of sweet Clover wearing her new Kurgo Tru-Fit dog seat belt:
For more great pet photos, visit the Wordless Wednesday blog hop below:
The study that evaluated the safety of canine car harnesses completed by the Center for Pet Safety has made it much easier for us to determine which brand really is the best. But the best may not always be the right one for you and your dog. So here are some other comparisons for you to consider when looking for the perfect way for your best friend to ride in the car. Please note, our comparison only covers dog car seat belts we currently have available at Pet Auto Safety.
Quality goes nearly hand-in-hand with safety. While most brands appear to be well made, only a couple of them held up in all three crash test weights conducted by the Center for Pet Safety (CPS). So when considering quality, consider safety.
The following is a list of the dog car seat belts rating from the safest to the least effective as according to CPS:
– ClickIt Utility
– Ruff Rider Roadie
– Kurgo Tru-Fit
– Kurgo Go-Tech
– Pet Buckle
– Guardian Gear (our standard brand)
The Kurgo Go-Tech was not part of the study conducted by CPS (see their full report from CPS here). However, it is very much like the Tru-Fit in style and make. Pet Buckle failed the safety tests conducted by CPS. Guardian Gear was not tested by CPS but we know for a fact that these canine car harnesses have not been tested for safety by the manufacturer. They are primarily used to help prevent driver distractions and to help keep a dog from getting thrown around in a sudden stop or swerve.
As would be expected, the price generally reflects the quality and safety. The following brands are listed from most expensive to least expensive:
– ClickIt Utility – $90 – $100
– Ruff Rider Roadie – $43 – $55
– Pet Buckle – $28 – $55
– Bergan – $24 – $35
– Kurgo Go-Tech – $22 – $32
– Kurgo – Tru-Fit – $20 – $30
– Guardian Gear – $13 – $20
EASE OF USE
All these pet safety belt brands seem difficult to put on your dog when putting them on for the first time. Even the second and third attempt can be difficult. But once you get used to it, all of them are easy. I do think, however, with the ClickIt Utility’s three attachment points that securing your dog in the car with this brand takes slightly more effort than the others do. But it is not difficult once you get a hang of it.
HOW THEY WORK
There are three different ways to secure your dog in the car with a pet safety belt:
1. Use the safety belt of your car and run it through a loop on the harness. This method is used by the Ruff Rider Roadie, Kurgo, Pet Buckle, and is one of the three attachment points used by the ClickIt Utility. The ClickIt, however, doesn’t actually run through a loop. It runs through the harness straps itself.
2. Connect the harness tether to the latchbar located between the seat cushions of 2001 to newer vehicle models. This method can be used by the Ruff Rider Roadie with their included caribiner clip, Bergan with the caribiner clip on its tether, Pet Buckle if the Kwik-Connect tether is used, and it is the other two attachment points used by the ClickIt.
3. Connect directly to the seat belt. The Bergan brand does this by clipping the carabiner in between the webbing of the seat belt receptacle. The Kurgo brand has a direct to seat belt connector that is sold separately and buckles directly into the seat belt receptacle. The Guardian Gear brand buckles directly into the seat belt receptacle as well.
The ClickIt must use the first two connection methods. The other brands that have more than one possible connection method must use one method or the other.
– ClickIt – Adjusts at both the neck and the chest. The vest piece for the extra small and small may be too bulky for smaller dogs with narrow chests or short bodies. It measures 9 inches long and the narrowest part of the vest is 3.5 inches wide. Despite the sizing indications, the extra small and small is not intended for very small dogs.
– Ruff Rider Roadie – Adjusts at the neck and the chest for medium through extra-large sizes. The neck on the small sizes is not adjustable.
– Bergan – Adjusts at both the neck and the chest. The vest piece for the small may be too bulky for smaller dogs. The harness does not fit very small dogs. The extra-large harness is the largest of all our extra-large harness brands.
– Kurgo Tru-Fit – Adjusts at the neck and the chest.
– Kurgo Go-Tech – Adjusts at the chest only. The harness will be loose at the neck for dogs with a really narrow neck.
– Pet Buckle – Adjusts at the chest and neck. The large size can be adjusted to fit medium-sized dogs but is generally too heavy because of the buckles. Therefore, this brand is only suitable for larger small breeds, or larger medium to large breeds.
– Guardian Gear – All styles are adjustable at the chest. Some styles may or may not be adjustable at the neck.
Dog car seat belts we did not consider in our comparison but rated well in safety according to CPS include the Allsafe and RC Pet. Allsafe did as well as the Ruff Rider Roadie and RC Pet rated as well as the Bergan. We did not include these brands in our comparison because we have no experience with them.
Welcome to Follow Up Friday where we recap the past week events. Before we get started, I want to say thanks to Jodi with Heart Like a Dog and JoAnn with Sand Spring Chesapeakes for hosting this blog hop! 🙂
Lindsay with That Mutt asked, “Are there seat belts designed specifically for dogs under 10 pounds? Or are those dogs, like cats, better off riding in crates?“
This is an excellent question! Although the Center for Pet Safety has not yet conducted a study of pet travel crates, I am confident of the testing completed by Sleepypod. Before Sleepypod designed their top rated ClickIt Utility pet seat belt, they designed and crash tested the best pet travel carriers I have ever seen. Check out this crash test video of the Sleepypod carrier:
When Sleepypod began designing dog car harnesses they found smaller pets were better protected in their carriers. So to answer your question more directly, yes, smaller pets are better off riding in crates; specifically, in pet travel carriers that are preferably soft-sided and are secured in the car.
There are lots of comments on this post for obvious reasons. If you haven’t entered to win the new ClickIt Utility yet, please do. The contest is open until the end of October and you can enter daily by tweeting about the giveaway.
I noticed a lot of commenters on this post gave the weight of their dog rather than the measurement. It is very important that you measure your dog. Some of the weights people indicated for their dogs sound like these dogs are too small to fit the smallest ClickIt. You’d think the extra-small size is for toy dogs but it’s not. It is for larger small dogs. To fit the extra-small, your dog should have a combined measurement of 31 to 36 inches. Another measurement to consider for small dogs is the size of the vest. The vest piece of the extra-small is 9″ long. The narrowest part of the vest is 3.5 inches wide. This means the vest might be too bulky for smaller dogs.
One question came up in the contest, Janet K asked if we have the orange ClickIt Utility dog car harnesses. Yes, but all sizes except the orange are out of stock. Lots of these are out of stock and we only have a few left. More will not be available until mid-November.
Sugar the Golden Retriever said, “FUN Event. We missed Dogtoberseft last weekend due to the rain. LOVE Roxy’s costume. Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar“
Our weather was fantastic, for the most part. It was a little chilly in the morning, but it wasn’t as cold as it was last year. And it warmed up nicely. Maya and I really had a great time.
In regards to Roxy’s costume, it really is cute, isn’t it? Roxy’s mom and aunt, Bridget and Rhonda, make dog clothes. They make other dog stuff too. In fact, they also made the cooling dog collars from our site.
The cooling dog collars have ice packs in them so that your dog can be cool and cool-looking. Click Maya’s picture to see these on our website. We have a few medium and large ones left. No more will be ordered until next spring.
Flea with Dog Treat Web for Jones Natural Chews says, “Omigoodness! This looks like so much fun! I love the Border Collie! And the Mastiffs! *SQUEEEE*“
I saw a lot of other breeds and cool breed mixes at the Dogtoberfest. But I was too busy to get a bunch of photos. That’s a good thing, of course. BTW Flea, I bet those dogs would have really loved a shank bone or other treat from Jones Natural Chews.
That’s it for this week. Thanks for joining us for Follow Up Friday. And thanks again to Jodi and JoAnne. Don’t forget to enter the contest for the ClickIt Utility pet seat belt. Good luck and have a great weekend! 🙂
Sunday, October 6th was the Dogtoberfest event held at South Park in Lawrence, Kansas. I was there as a vendor with a couple of tables of our pet travel supplies. Maya was there as well. Her job was to look cute and to occasionaly demonstrate her new ClickIt Utility dog car harness. Here is a photo I took of Maya and several other photos of the event:
For more Wordless Wednesday fun, check out the blog hop below:
Enter to Win the ClickIt Utility Pet Car Harness
Do you want to be one of the first people to try out the new ClickIt Utility seat belt for dogs from Sleepypod? Great! Just enter the Rafflecopter below.
This seat belt for dogs did not fail! It was the top performing pet car harness as conducted by the Center for Pet Safety and shown in their October 2013 report (see our post on October 3rd). The ClickIt Utility is unique in that it has a three point attachment system designed to keep your dog more stable in the event of a car accident. It has been crash tested at 30mph using a 75lb dog dummy. Watch the following crash test video to see how the ClickIt keeps your dog on the seat.
For other valuable safety information on this new products, visit our website’s ClickIt Utility pet car harnesses page and check out our post from September 28, 2013 to see how well it worked for my dog Maya.
Before you enter, make sure your dog is big enough to wear one. The extra-small and small sizes are really for smaller medium sized dogs. Sleepypod recommends that smaller dogs should be ride in a pet carrier such as their Sleepypod pet car seat.
To determine if your dog is big enough, measure around his chest and neck in a figure-8 as shown in the diagram below. Also, watch the following video. If your dog’s figure-8 measurement is less than 31 inches, then he is too small for the ClickIt Utility seat belt for dogs.
Contest Rules and Guidelines:
1. Contest ends at 11:59pm October 31st, 2013.
2. Please don’t enter your dog in the contest if he is too small to fit the ClickIt Utility harness unless you plan to give it to a friend or donate it. See measuring instructions above.
3. The mailing address for the winner must be in the US. If you live outside the US but have a US shipping address or have someone in the US who will ship to you, then you may enter the contest.
4. One of the Rafflecopter entries will let you enter more than once. Multiple entries are permitted.
5. If you already like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter, you can simply indicate on the Rafflecopter for a valid entry.
6. Your Like and Follow must be active at the time of the drawing.
7. We will choose the winner using Random.org. The winner will be contacted via all methods provided such as email, Facebook message, and/or Twitter direct messaging. You have three business days to reply or another winner will be selected.
8. The ClickIt Utility has been so popular that most sizes and colors are out of stock by both us and Sleepypod. So your prize may not be sent until more are available in mid to late November.
Good luck! 🙂
Friday is here again! It’s time to recap the past week’s events. And let me tell you, it has been an eventful week. Before I get to that, though, let me thank Jodi with Heart Like a Dog and Lynda from Two Ears and a Tail for hosting the Follow Up Friday blog hop. Thanks! 🙂
There were a lot of great comments from last week’s Follow Up Friday. One that needs special mention is the one from Flea with DogTreatWeb for Jones Natural Chews. She knows we go from Kansas to Texas and back every year and that we drive through Oklahoma on the way. So she invited us to stop by on the way back! I’m so excited!!! I can’t wait to meet Flash, Patches, Jimmy, and all the lovely hens. And Flea would love to meet Pierson. So be sure to subscribe to our blog so you don’t miss the post about our trip at the end of December.
The New ClickIt Utility Dog Safety Belt is Here!
I knew the ClickIt Utility was going to be nice but I didn’t really expect it to work well enough to keep my Maya in her seat. She is a crazy dog and likes to stand up and move around. This is the first pet car harness that keeps her in her seat. I really truly love it!
Ms. Phoebe the cat had a good question about the ClickIt Utility. She asked if her 70lb doggie sister would be able to lie down in the harness. The answer is yes. My Labrador Maya wanted to move around so badly, but the only thing she could do to move was to lie down. Having the Kurgo Backseat Bridge in place might help my big girl be able to lie down in the forward facing position without hanging off the seat. (The photo of Maya above does not show the Kurgo Backseat Bridge because I took the photo in my husband’s car. My car is a 1998 and does not have the latch system.)
Snoopy with Snoopy’s dog blog asked if the dog safety belt harness could also be used as a walking harness. Yes, Snoopy, it can. It has a ring on the back to allow for this. It does not, however, have a ring in the front like the Kurgo harness does.
Roxi asked if her 75lb German Shepherd and 30lb mixed breed could both ride in the back seat while wearing this pet car harness. Yes, Roxi, both can ride in the back seat. All vehicles 2001 model and later have the latchbar system in place for baby car seats. This latchbar system consists of these metal anchors located between the seat cushions. For both the left and right side of the seat (but not the middle) there are two anchors.
There are no anchors in the front seat so your dog will not be able to wear the ClickIt in the front. Other brands, however, may work in the front seat. We usually do not recommend dogs in the front seat, though, because front passenger side airbags are not safe for dogs.
The Center for Pet Safety Report is Out
Remember the 2001 report where four harnesses failed, thereby mislabeling all pet seat belts as a failure? Well the October 2013 report showed that not all brands were failures. The ClickIt Utility dog safety belt got the highest marks. It outperformed all other brands. Other brands did okay and still others completely failed. If you haven’t read my post regarding this, please go check it out now. It was published October 3rd, 2013.
Callie, Shadow, and Ducky’s mom from SamsNorthernGirl blog mentioned a couple of dogs probably would not be comfortable wearing the ClickIt Utility dog safety belt because it is too restrictive. Both Callie and Shadow have mild hip dysplasia that could be aggravated by being forced to stay in one place. The restriction of this particular brand is definitely something people want to consider. While it is good to be as restricted in the car as much as possible in most cases, I can see how something like hip problems could be an exception.
Thankfully, other brands did not fail the test. A brand like the Ruff Rider Roadie harness may not have done as well as the ClickIt, but it did not fail the testing done by the Center for Pet Safety. There are other methods of keeping your dog safe in the car as well. A secured pet travel crate might be just as good as a harness. The Center for Pet Safety has not yet conducted studies on this but will. We will keep you posted.
Thank you all for stopping by and for your comments. The more we engage in conversations about the safety of our pets, the better things will get.
The report from the Center for Pet Safety regarding the safety of pet car harnesses is finally out. The news is good in some ways but not so good in others. Before we give a brief summary of the report, let us remind you that injury to a dog in a car accident is much more likely if they are not harnessed at all. So even though a dog seat belt may have failed the Center for Pet Safety’s standards, something is better than nothing. See our post about what if a dog isn’t restrained in the car.
ClickIt Utility is the Top Performing Dog Seat Belt
The good news is that the ClickIt Utiltiy dog seat belt from Sleepypod is the top performer! It consistently passed all tests for all sizes, kept your dog in the seat, and restricted side-to-side movement. We recently acquired this brand and it is currently available on our retail site, free shipping.
These next two brands did not fail, but they didn’t do as well as the ClickIt Utility: Allsafe and Ruff Rider. We have Ruff Rider Roadie available on our site, but not Allsafe.
These next brands failed in some ways, but not all:
– The Canine Friendly from RC Pet failed at the 75lb level for larger dogs.
– Bergan failed at the 75lb level for larger dogs.
– The Kurgo Tru-Fit failed at the 25lb and 75lb level but did well for the 45lb level for medium sized dogs.
We have the Bergan and Kurgo brands on our retail site. If the ClickIt Utility and Ruff Rider is a bit out of one’s price range, we suggest the Bergan for small dogs, and the Bergan or Kurgo for medium dogs. I believe Kurgo has just released a new dog seat belt for larger dogs. It is available on Kurgo’s site only at this time.
Pet Buckle failed at all sizes. They have also opted out of test attendance with the Center for Pet Safety. We will be discontinuing this brand.
These brands, which we do not sell, did not make it to the crash test level. The Center for Pet Safety determined their quality was not adequate enough to pass any crash test: Champion from USA Canine Outfitters, Clix from In the Company of Animals, EZ-Rider from Coastal, and the Pet Safety Harness and Adapter from Snoozer.
For more detailed information, check out the full report from the Center for Pet Safety.
Since the ClickIt Utility dog seat belt is a brand new product, I do not feel that our company made a bad decision in the products we elected to sell. The only one of our products that claimed crash testing and completely failed was the Pet Buckle. When we first started selling Pet Buckle, it was the only brand which used metal buckles. It was innovative at the time. When new companies started arising we added them to our inventory but didn’t stop Pet Buckle. After all, Pet Buckle and the newer brands all made the same pet safety claims.
We’re glad we took up the Ruff Rider brand. And we still like the Bergan and Kurgo brands even though they did not hold up as well as the others. Not everyone is going to be able to afford the nearly $100 price of the ClickIt Utiltiy. Since something is still better than nothing, we will continue to sell the Bergan and Kurgo. However, we will be adding a disclosure regarding the Center for Pet Safety’s report on our site over the next few days.
Every couple of months, the Lawrence Humane Society has a little gathering called the Mutt Mixer. It is where people can come to bring their dogs and they get to hang around in the huge exercise pens with other dogs. The mixing part is the dogs with homes and their people get to meet dogs up for adoption. It’s a great socializing activity that Maya loves. I like it too, but I mostly hang out outside of the fenced area at a small table where I have the dog seat belts. I still get to socialize, though! 🙂 Here are some of the photos from the event last Thrusday (the 26th).
These other photos are from the same event held in May.
We didn’t make it to the one in July. View our posts from the end of July to see why.
Do you have any fun events for dogs in your neighborhood?
There are more fun pet photos on the Wordless Wednesday blog hop below: