| Car Life
a happy dog with a bandana and sunglasses looks out the window

A family outing or friendly get-together wouldn’t be complete without the furry members of your squad! Whether you’re headed a few blocks to the vet or on a summer road trip with your pet, these pet accessories for cars will help make sure your dog or cat is safe and happy while you’re on the road.

8 Pet Accessories for Cars for Maximum Safety & Comfort

  1. Dog Ramps for Cars

While some dog travel accessories are meant to be used while you’re in motion, this one is made for easy loading and unloading transitions once you’ve arrived at your destination. If your pet tends to sprint outside and jump into the car when you say the magic word (you know, “R-I-D-E”), save their canine joints and your peace of mind with a folding car ramp. These ramps are designed to make it easy for your dog to get in and out of the car, plus some of them are foldable!

  1. Seat Covers

Nothing puts a damper on a fun family day out like the scent of “wet dog” seeping into your car seats. Yuck! Keep your ride clean with a removable, machine-washable seat cover. Some seat covers double as a car hammock, which is a great way to create a barrier between the back and front seats. When you’re behind the wheel, it’s not safe for your dog to try and climb into your lap, so keep them happily contained in the backseat. Once you get to your destination or back home, toss the cover into the washing machine and revel in your (mostly) pet-hair-free car seat.

  1. Pet Car Hammock

Speaking of car hammocks, they’re not just designed for you. If you have to suddenly step on the brakes, your best friend could go flying… or, you could create a hammock (for free!) for dogs and cats in the backseat. By attaching a big blanket to the headrests of your car (as shown in the video above), you’ll save your furry friend from falling uncomfortably to the floor of the vehicle.

  1. Harnesses and Seatbelts

A well-ventilated carrier is the ASPCA’s recommended mode of travel for pets, but kennels and carriers can take up valuable space in the car. Instead, give your furry friend a smaller (but still safe space) in the backseat with a safety harness and seatbelt. Pet seatbelts click right into your car’s existing seatbelt system and attach to your pet’s harness. Instead of latching the belt to their collar—which is tempting to save time—use a crash-tested harness so that your pet’s collar doesn’t injure him or her in the event of a hard stop or an accident.

  1. Pet Booster Seat

If your pet is on the smaller side, try a pet bucket booster seat that straps into the backseat of your car. Your pet can sit higher up (which helps pets who get carsick easily), and the curved edges of a pet booster seat make it feel like a comforting, cozy bed. With a harness and seatbelt, your pet will be able to safely curl up, relax, and enjoy the trip.

  1. Travel Food and Water Bowls

Don’t forget the basics when you’re stocking up on pet accessories for your car! Just in case you’re out and about when dinnertime strikes, keep food and water bowls in your vehicle for your pet (look for collapsible bowls to save space).

Stash a few bottles of water and a container of pet food that’s big enough to hold a few meals’ worth in the backseat so your pet can stay on his or her regular feeding schedule, no matter where you are. As a bonus, keeping this routine can help ease road trip jitters for your pet! A hungry pet is not a happy pet, so keep your furry passengers well-fed so you can focus on the road.

  1. Pet Emergency Kit

If you’re a longtime pet owner, there’s a good chance you’ve experienced at least one pet emergency before (Fifi, we’re looking at you and the peace lily you tried to eat). In addition to your cat and dog car travel accessories, bring along an emergency kit for your pet.

Include anti-anxiety medications and any other medical items your pet needs regularly, and consider packing something that can help with car sickness. Whether you’re staying in a pet-friendly hotel or bunking at friends’ houses, it’s also a good idea to do a little research and find the nearest emergency vet clinics around your destination. Wherever your travels take you, keep your pet covered with an emergency plan, and keep your (human) family covered with car insurance from Direct Auto.

  1. Another Passenger

While it’s certainly a blast to hit the open road with just your furry friend to keep you company, bringing along another person can help ease the worry of caring for your pet’s needs while you drive. Your passenger will be able to help your dog or cat stay comfortable and at ease throughout the trip so that you can keep driving safely to your destination. Plus, now you and your two companions can break out the three-part harmonies for some howlin’ carpool karaoke.

Be sure to keep driving around with your pets because for every mile you travel, you get one meow-ile closer to qualifying for a safe driving discount! Also, be sure to leave a comment below and tell us all about your favorite road trips with your furry family members!