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Compare Pet Travel Harness Brands

Author: MayaAndPierson
February 16, 2013
Dog Seat Belt

Which dog seat belt is right for your pet?

Since we have now added the Ruff Rider Roadie and are phasing out the Guardian Gear / Cruising Companion brand dog seat belts, we are doing a new comparison. We now have four quality brands of dog car harnesses to choose from:  Bergan, Kurgo Tru-Fit, Pet Buckle, and Roadie. Which one is best? They are all great, but each has a different style and feature. Compare them below:

Quality
Quality is hard to quantify. All of these four brands are well-made with strong materials. While some or all parts may have been constructed outside the United States, each of the companies that make these brands has strict quality control measures in place to ensure that each and every dog seat belt meets the same high standards.

Safety
Since each of these brands has been tested by a different strength and crash test specialist, it is difficult to determine which dog seat belt brand is the safest. We are confident in the safety and crash testing of each of these brands.
* Bergan was tested using the V9DT Pet Safety Durability standard.
* Kurgo Tru-Fit enhanced version was tested by the New Hampshire Materials Laboratory, Inc.
* Pet Buckle was tested by the Center for Advanced Product Evaluation (CAPE).
* Roadie Ruff Rider was tested by both the Commercial Test Labs and the Allianz Insurance Crash Research Center.

Fit
Can dogs get out of them? Yes to all. A determined dog can get out of any pet travel harness. Keeping the seat belt harness too tight will not prevent this and will likely only make a dog more determined to get out of it. So when we look at how it fits, we are looking for any loose spots or any place that doesn’t adjust well.
* Bergan – Fits well and adjustable at both the neck and sides, although the chest piece may be a little long for some dogs.
* Kurgo Tru-Fit – Fits well and is adjustable at both the neck and sides.
* Pet Buckle – Fits well on small dogs or large dogs. It does not fit medium-sized dogs.
* Ruff Rider Roadie – Fits well, and all except the smaller sizes are adjustable at both the neck and sides.

How it Works
* Bergan – Uses an adjustable length tether with a carabiner clip to attach directly to the seat belt webbing of the car.
* Kurgo Tru-Fit – Uses a loop that the seat belt of the car goes through.
* Pet Buckle – Uses a loop tether for the seat belt of the car to go through. An adjustable length Kwik Connect tether may be included. This tether clips directly onto the latchbar between the seat cushions of vehicles 2001 and later.
* Ruff Rider Roadie – Uses a loop tether for the seat belt of the car to go through.

Bergan Tether

How the carabiner clip on the Bergan tether works with the seat belt in your car.

Kurgo Tru-Fit Tether Loop

How the Kurgo Tru-Fit tether loop works with the seat belt of your car. The Ruff Rider and Pet Buckle works in a similar way.

Kwik-Connect Tether for Pet Buckle

How the Kwik-Connect tether of the Pet Buckle works in your car.

Ease of Use
In trying out each of these brands, we have not found one that is particularly easier to put on than the others. All take a little thought when putting them on for the first time, but once you get a hang of it all of them are easy.

Distinguishing Features
* Bergan – Padded chest piece; since no loop tether, tangling is less likely.
* Kurgo Tru-Fit – Slightly padded; enhanced version has steel buckles; allows for harness to also be used as a walking harness.
* Pet Buckle – Metal buckles; if the Kwik-Connect tether is used, tangling is less likely.
* Ruff Rider Roadie – No plastic parts; tested to ensure there is no pressure on dog’s throat; pleated design on straps under dog’s legs to prevent irritation; tether and harness is one piece and tether can be used as a short walking leash.

Price
Listed from least expensive to most expensive:
* Bergan
* Kurgo Tru-Fit
* Pet Buckle
* Roadie Ruff Rider

If you have any questions regarding any other differences in these pet travel harness brands, please email us at naturebydawn@aol.com. We have had the opportunity to use these on our own dogs, including my own:  Sephi wore the Kurgo, Maya wears the Kurgo with a Bergan tether (to prevent tangling), and Pierson wears the Bergan. 🙂

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7 Responses to “Compare Pet Travel Harness Brands”

  1. Sacha:

    My puppy Noah (4mos) rides well in the car for the most part..however he sometimes is in the mood to not sit/lay still. He will listen and initially sit/lay down, but after a bit starts moving around again. If he’s in the back that’s ok & I just look back at him when I can to make sure he’s alright, however he is Lab/ Shar Pei and I think some kind of Hound dog (Rhodesian Ridgeback?) so he likes to be close to me and if I let him be in front passenger seat, I need a way to get him to stay in his seat.

  2. SephiAndMaya:

    Sacha, a dog seat belt will definitely help. You will probably want to help him get used to wearing the seat belt first before taking him in the car so he doesn’t chew on the harness to get ou. We have some tips on that. There is a link to an article on how to do that here – http://www.petautosafety.com/page/bergan-dog-safety-car-harness. Also, perhaps you can enter our giveaway for a free dog car harness. There is a drawing at the end of the month. To enter, find the post that was made earlier this month and enter through the Rafflecopter. Let me know if you have any questions! 🙂

  3. Sue at Talking Dogs:

    Very helpful! sharing…

  4. Meaghann:

    I have an English Shepherd who loves to dart the minute we open any door in our car. We have a fabric barrier that we know works well in our car, however that doesn’t solve the problem of her darting when we open the door to let her out. After hours of research, I’m debating between using the Kurgo Enhaced Strength (with the steel nesting clasps) and the Bergan. Julia is 58 pounds and panics easily, therefore I want to make sure she is as secure as possible. Either way, I would be using the Bergan’s tether system, but I was wondering which harness you would suggest??

  5. SephiAndMaya:

    Meaghann, Both are pretty good. I use both – The Bergan for my Aussie mix and the Kurgo for my Lab. Is an English Shepherd a bit like an Aussie? Perhaps the Bergan would work best. If you purchase either from us and want to exchange the Bergan for the Kurgo (in the same size) or vise versa, then we will do that for you.

  6. Arlene Erbacher:

    we purchaesd the Pet Buckle Kwik Connect harness and tether for our Great Dane puppy, and have really had no problem with it, she is 70+ lbs now. we’ve had it about 5 months and use it every day, but just this weekend the rubber strap holder has ripped and I am trying to get in touch with the company that makes it to see if we can order replacement parts. any idea how we can get in touch with the manufacturer? thanks,

  7. SephiAndMaya:

    Sure! Their number is (317) 896-9531. Anyone there should be able to help you. 🙂