Safety First

8 Easy-to-follow rules to ensure your dog is safe in your car

Nissan is offering helpful hints for keeping your dog safe in your car.

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

Whether you're hitting the road to head to grandma's house or just popping by the V-E-T, it's important that man's best friend rides safely in your automobile.

Since the pandemic took hold, there has been a large rise in pet adoptions. According to Rover.com, more than 60 percent of those have been done by people who have little or no previous pet experience.

The American Automobile Association recently reported that 84 percent of Americans have driven with their pet in the car, yet only 16 percent use any form of restraint. In the same study, one in six admitted to driving with a dog on their lap.

dog car safety nissan Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

In a recent study, Nissan found that, due to COVID-19, 71 percent of consumers are more comfortable traveling by car than airplane this summer.

That's a lot of numbers that could all amount to one thing - a disaster. That is, unless you follow some rules that will help ensure that your dog is safe in your car.

Rule 1: Buckle up

dog car safety nissan

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

It isn't just humans that need to be buckled in the car. Nissan offers some great advice for owners regarding securing a dog in a car:

'"One recommended way to secure a pet is to use a chest-style harness in the rear seating position. Run a seat belt through a loop on the back of the pet harness, or under the back or the harness itself. Always consult the pet harness information manual for instruction on proper vehicle use. This is an excellent solution to ensure that medium- to large-size dogs stay seated during a trip.

"Another option is using a pet restraint tether, often referred to as a pet seat belt. This type of restraint offers an inexpensive and quick solution for securing pets. As the name implies, this restraint clips to the pet's collar or harness and is often affixed to your vehicle by either clipping into the seatbelt buckle or child-seat anchor to help keep your dog from moving around the vehicle.

"Utilizing a secured pet carrier or kennel is another way to travel safely with pets. Smaller dogs can be housed in portable-style carrier that can be secured in the vehicle's second row using seat belts or pillows to help limit movement. Smaller carriers can also be placed on the floor behind one of the front seats. Medium and large-sized pets should be placed in a sturdier kennel secured to the vehicle cargo area in SUVs or trucks. In either instance, the kennel should be fastened to the vehicle as securely as possible."

Rule 2: Set boundaries

dog car safety nissan

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

According to Nissan, "Cargo area dividers can be used to help keep pets behind the last row of an SUV. These are a great way to keep large dogs out of the occupant space when traveling. It's best to still secure the pet in the cargo area."

Rule 3: Adjust climate control accordingly

How hot is it in the cargo area versus the driver's seat? Second row? Is the sun pouring in through the sunroof on your dog but they don't have vents to aim at them to keep cool? It's important to monitor the changing heating and cooling situation where your precious cargo is seated to ensure that they're safe.

Rule 4: Never leave pets in the car on a hot day

According to an expert with Nissan, cracking the windows of a car has a negligible effect on keeping down the temperature inside a car on a hot day. Don't leave your kids or your dog in a hot car.

Rule 5: In the event of a crash, secure your pet as quickly as possible

It's important to make sure that you and any others involved in a crash are safe and administer any first aid while complying with commands given by first responders. To that end, you'll need to secure your dog while giving them a thorough once-over for injuries.

Keep in mind that your dog may be frightened, especially of strangers - they don't understand that first responders are there to help them too. You may not be able to completely calm them, but you can take steps like using soothing tones, petting them, and holding them close.

How to secure your pet in the car

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

Rule 6: Bring water along on trips

Sure, the more water you give your dog, the more often they're going to need to go out, but you don't want to starve them of water for the sake of a quieter road trip. Bring fresh water with you, Many vehicles, like the 2021 Nissan Rogue, have cutouts in the rear cargo area where you can store a gallon of fresh water.

dog car safety nissan

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

Rule 7: Get out and stretch

It's not just humans that need a pit stop during a road trip. Pets need to get out and utilize green space, whether it's to use the bathroom, get some energy out, or just enjoy not being cooped up. Once they do, they're likely to be less restless in their crate or seat, allowing for more safe travel. Build in stops to your itinerary taking advantages of towns with dog parks or public green spaces.

dog car safety nissan

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

Rule 8: Practice makes perfect

Not every dog likes going for a ride. It will help them (and you) to break up the routine. Don't always follow the same pattern to get them ready for the ride. Get them used to being in the car by sitting in your driveway with the engine running before you take off. Once they're used to being in a car, get them used to being in there with a tether on or in their crate.

You can get your pup used to wearing a harness by putting it on them for a period of time at home, even when you have no plans to go anywhere.

Train them to be tolerant of the moving vehicle by taking them for short training rides. Slowly build up your time in the car with them.

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Dream job alert

You could become Dodge's Chief Donut Maker

You can apply to become a Dodge ambassador with some great perks.

Dodge

One lucky person is about to win the car enthusiast's job of a lifetime, though only for a year. Beginning today, Dodge is accepting applications for its new and temporary Chief Donut Maker

If the title alone isn't enough to make the job sound appealing, the benefits are seemingly endless. The lucky new Dodge "employee" will pick up a $150,000 salary, along with the opportunity to drive an SRT Hellcat company car for the year. Additionally, the winner will participate in all manner of racing and car-related events, take courses at Radford Racing School, and get a load of Dodge-branded clothing.

Dodge is Hiring a Chief Donut Maker www.youtube.com

If you're reading this and thinking it sounds like a blast - you're right. There's a catch, however, which comes in the form of an intense consideration process that culminates in a racing event with a pro driver on a closed course. A panel of judges will evaluate the video entries, and wrestler Bill Goldberg will oversee the race between the top ten finalists. Dodge says the series of eliminations will air like a reality TV show, with the winner being revealed in the final episode.

Today is the opening day of the application period. You have until February 28 to submit your short video, which can be a maximum of two minutes. Get busy making your video and head here to submit it before the deadline.

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New full-size SUVtoyota

Toyota teases new SUV that could be updated Sequoia

The teaser image gives zero detail on the new SUV.

Toyota

Toyota recently retook the title of world’s largest automaker and has its sights set on refreshing some of its oldest models. The Tundra full-size pickup truck got the treatment late last year, and now we’re seeing teases of a new SUV from the auto giant. The image, released yesterday, is likely of a new Sequoia, which is based on the Tundra and is equally as overdue for a refresh.

2022 Toyota Sequoia If the tease is of a new Sequoia, it will replace the 15-year-old current-generation model.Toyota

After 15 years or so on sale in its current form, the Sequoia is old enough to earn a learner’s permit of its own at this point. All of its competitors offer newer and more intuitive technology, a larger variety of advanced safety gear, and more efficient powertrains. In the teaser, we can see a sharply chiseled rear quarter panel and shapely tail lights, but not much else. If it is a Sequoia, the styling marks a significant shift in the SUV’s outward appearance.

The shadowy image is the only tidbit Toyota has shared so far, but we can draw some information from the recently released Toyota Tundra pickup truck, with which the Sequoia typically shares a platform and powertrain elements. The all-new 2022 Tundra dropped the 5.7-liter V8 that powered it for years, in favor of a pair of twin-turbo V6 engines, one of which is a hybrid. That means we could see a new Sequoia with the same engines, delivering up to 479 horsepower.

2022 Toyota Sequoia We're likely to see a TRD off-road oriented model.Toyota

The new full-size SUV will likely also get some of the tech updates that Toyota bestowed upon the new Tundra. That could mean up to a 14-inch infotainment touchscreen with a new, more intuitive user interface and over-the-air updates. Refreshed safety features are almost certainly on the list of Sequoia changes as well.

Toyota hasn’t nailed down an official reveal date or any other information for the new SUV, but has said that more details are coming soon.

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