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(USA Today)   Crash tests show that dog restraints in cars usually fail, which really annoys the dogs who are picked for the crash tests   (usatoday.com) divider line 28
    More: Fail, dog restraints, Automotive News, Kevin McHale, dashboards, dogs  
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2052 clicks; posted to Main » on 14 Aug 2013 at 7:23 AM (50 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



28 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2013-08-14 07:27:38 AM
That's gotta be ruff for the pets to hear....
 
2013-08-14 07:29:26 AM
That's gotta be ruff to hear.
 
2013-08-14 07:44:57 AM
That's gotta be ruff to hear.
 
2013-08-14 07:52:37 AM
you misspelled ruff in ruff to hear
 
2013-08-14 07:53:22 AM
I would say the best thing is for them to be unrestrained.  You know why drunk/unconscious /sleeping passengers survive horrific crashes?  It's because they are totally relaxed because they don't have any idea of what coming and the 'rubbery' state of their bodies results in them tolerating the impact much better than someone who is bracing for it.
 
2013-08-14 07:58:42 AM
s10.postimg.org
 
2013-08-14 08:01:08 AM

Cold_Sassy: I would say the best thing is for them to be unrestrained.  You know why drunk/unconscious /sleeping passengers survive horrific crashes?  It's because they are totally relaxed because they don't have any idea of what coming and the 'rubbery' state of their bodies results in them tolerating the impact much better than someone who is bracing for it.


That's believed to be true about drunk drivers, but that's irrelevant to dogs riding in cars, regardless of whether the dog has been drinking.

Being unrestrained won't make the dog more relaxed in a wreck. They tense up at impact or when they hear someone in the car gasp right before impact. Flying through the car and slamming into the windshield is going to injure or kill the dog, and she will be, to put it mildly, "tense" when that happens.
 
2013-08-14 08:08:12 AM
I have no idea how we would restrain our 90 lb greyhound in the car. We put him in the back of our Honda Fit with the seats down. Around town he'll stand and put his head out the window and at highway speeds we'll have him lay down. The best we can do is accelerate and take turns slowly, and keep enough following distance so we can brake smoothly and never have stop short. Works well for us.

Though I don't think he would mind being suspended in the air with a series of straps.
 
2013-08-14 08:09:24 AM

Cold_Sassy: I would say the best thing is for them to be unrestrained.  You know why drunk/unconscious /sleeping passengers survive horrific crashes?  It's because they are totally relaxed because they don't have any idea of what coming and the 'rubbery' state of their bodies results in them tolerating the impact much better than someone who is bracing for it.


As someone that barrel-rolled a car at 70+ mph and walked away with only a cut on the top of my head (from where I broke the courtesy light with it), I'd like to confirm that there is something to your theory.  But as a betting man, I'd prefer to be drunk in a 5 pt. harness and know it's coming.
 
2013-08-14 08:19:18 AM
Sounds like a bunch of inventors skipped important steps in developing proper restraints.  I recall the really human restraint testing involved finding out what kind of negative G-forces the human body can withstand.  These guys didn't even bother with the alpha testing of their devices, much less studying their subjects.  So, not exactly surprised that any idiot can design whatever they want and it not work.
 
2013-08-14 08:25:06 AM

lack of warmth: Sounds like a bunch of inventors skipped important steps in developing proper restraints.  I recall the really human restraint testing involved finding out what kind of negative G-forces the human body can withstand.  These guys didn't even bother with the alpha testing of their devices, much less studying their subjects.  So, not exactly surprised that any idiot can design whatever they want and it not work.


Exactly this. The makers of these products take advantage of pet owners' desire to keep their dogs safe, knowing that the owners would probably assume the products were tested and approved by some regulating body.
 
2013-08-14 08:42:27 AM
That's why I keep about 20 of these in my car:
stuffpoint.com

In case of an impact, it's like having 20 airbags surrounding you, cushioning any blow you might take. Remember in Demolition Man whe Stallone crashed his cop car, and was instantly surround with foam? Same thing but with puppies.
 
2013-08-14 08:59:26 AM
It looks like they tested only harness type systems for large dogs.  I'd expect those to fare the worst.  I've seen very few that look at all effective - most are just tying the dog to the seat.

Some of the small animal systems look better.  I'd be interested in how those fare.
 
2013-08-14 09:25:31 AM

MadAzza: Cold_Sassy: I would say the best thing is for them to be unrestrained.  You know why drunk/unconscious /sleeping passengers survive horrific crashes?  It's because they are totally relaxed because they don't have any idea of what coming and the 'rubbery' state of their bodies results in them tolerating the impact much better than someone who is bracing for it.

That's believed to be true about drunk drivers, but that's irrelevant to dogs riding in cars, regardless of whether the dog has been drinking.

Being unrestrained won't make the dog more relaxed in a wreck. They tense up at impact or when they hear someone in the car gasp right before impact. Flying through the car and slamming into the windshield is going to injure or kill the dog, and she will be, to put it mildly, "tense" when that happens.


I can see your point; depending on the car being involved that could be a problem. However, I drive a very large old-school solid frame automobile and she rides in the backseat.  All she would hit was the well padded back of the front seat.  It's pretty unlikely she would become a projectile.  And, she has heard gasps out of me before caused by spiders/snakes etc. so I doubt that'd cause her any alarm.
 
2013-08-14 09:26:47 AM
I drive with my dog on my lap. If we are in an accident the airbag with pin her safely against my torso.
 
2013-08-14 09:40:55 AM
the restraints aren't for "protecting the dog in the event of an accident" so much as they're for "stopping the dog from causing an accident in the first place"

if your dog is in your lap, moving around, blocking your view, inhibiting your movement, you're driving in an unsafe manner.
 
2013-08-14 09:53:25 AM
This is why my dog always rides on the roof.
 
2013-08-14 10:46:57 AM
And we care because
 
2013-08-14 11:43:12 AM

lack of warmth: Sounds like a bunch of inventors skipped important steps in developing proper restraints.  I recall the really human restraint testing involved finding out what kind of negative G-forces the human body can withstand.  These guys didn't even bother with the alpha testing of their devices, much less studying their subjects.  So, not exactly surprised that any idiot can design whatever they want and it not work.


Or they designed a system to leash your dog to the seat, to keep them from being a distraction while driving.  Most of the harnesses specifically say they are not a crash safety device.
 
2013-08-14 01:16:50 PM
Well, this article gives me pause, err...paws?

I've been looking into a restraint for my 75lb German Shepherd so that he could ride (and stay) in the back seat of my convertible.  He'd love the open air ride, but he's apt to leap out of the car to chase squirrels, cats and other dogs.  While being a crash restraint is not high on my priority list since this would only be for occasional use, I'd just as soon have one that won't kill him immediately if some nut causes a minor accident. (I have no illusions about his survivability in a major crash)
 
2013-08-14 01:23:43 PM
Protecting a large dog in a crash would be tough.  A small dog presents the same issues for body support, but they're small enough that something the size of a baby seat could be utilized.

The problem is that humans have a very different shape, and current vehicles are extensively optimized for *our* safety, not the animal's.

What I'm picturing to actually protect a dog in a crash is a modified rear-facing baby seat.  The dog would be held in a padded shelf that it would press against in most crashes.

Of course, it'd also be restraining enough that most dogs wouldn't like 'rides' anymore...
 
2013-08-14 02:01:59 PM
Couldn't one just use a pet carrier and strap it down to the cargo hooks? If it's small enough, at least put it on the floor behind one of the front seats.
 
2013-08-14 02:38:43 PM

Harvey Manfrenjensenjen: Couldn't one just use a pet carrier and strap it down to the cargo hooks?


A lot of vehicles lack proper cargo hooks, but if you have them it's really the best option.  A padded carrier would be even better.
 
Byn
2013-08-14 03:07:23 PM

Harvey Manfrenjensenjen: Couldn't one just use a pet carrier and strap it down to the cargo hooks? If it's small enough, at least put it on the floor behind one of the front seats.


Yep, that's what we do for our border collie. Another thing that people don't think about is the fact that if you're in an accient and the dog is injured/ejected from the car, they may become aggressive and make it difficult for emergency pesonnel to get close to you and the car.
 
2013-08-14 08:28:41 PM
This is why I just let my dog drive.
 
2013-08-14 08:57:05 PM
Dog restraints aren't for allowing a dog to survive a major accident.  If that were to happen, I'm sure my best friend Bowser is a goner.

What they can do is prevent 50lbs of Bowser from hitting me in the back of the head at high speeds if I get into a serious accident.  50lbs of Bowser can do a lot of damage to the back of my head in a crash.
 
2013-08-14 10:11:07 PM
The restraint system I worked out for my 80 Lb German shepherd worked well enough in the one minor accident we were in.  I just put her in a (heavy duty) harness and buckled the center shoulder and lap belt through it.

I did this mostly because she had troubles staying on the seat and hated falling on the floor.  The extra tension of the seat belt kept her in place on the seat, but still gave her enough slack that she could lay down or sit up and put her nose out the window.

Since she was sitting in the car when we were hit she was held against the seat just fine, didn't even fall off. The seatbelts reacted to the momentum and held her in place.  I don't know if there's much more that can be done in the case of a serious accident.
 
2013-08-15 02:18:01 AM
AS far as I am concerned, these are more about keeping the damn varmints from running roughshod through the car while driving-- which is the real safety issue of driving with beasts in ones vehicle.

Best thing is to just leash them to the bumper before driving away.
 
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