Is it safe to let your dog poke its head out the window of a car?

Seeing a dog with its head out of a moving car window is a sight many of us see and connect with feelings of happiness and joy. However, did you know that it can be dangerous to your dog? While your furry friend may have fun from the experience of the rush of air against its face, you are endangering its life by allowing its head to poke outside of the window. With that said, there are safer alternatives to let your dog enjoy the sensation of fresh air as you travel together on trips or errands.

dog with its head out of the window

Before we discuss why it’s a bad idea to let your dog stick its head out of the car, we must first tackle why they feel the need to do it. Aside from the rush of cold clean air hitting their face, they also receive a plethora of new scents and smells which act as a stimulus for them as they experience new locations. It also helps them cool down if they are overheating especially in the summertime when the temperature can get very hot. Remember dogs can’t sweat so they need extra help when cooling down. 

open car window

The possible dangers your dog might encounter are too numerous to count, however, here is a quick list of things that you need to consider. 

One of the first things to consider is that if your dog is not properly restrained it might fall out of your car if it leans too far out of the window. This can lead to a fatal injury especially if your vehicle is traveling at speed. It also applies to emergencies such as when you need to make a sudden stop. Your dog may end up flying out of your car leading to injuries. 

Another thing to consider is that if your pet may suddenly jump out of the car while moving or when stopped. This will lead to more hassle for you and could lead to a dangerous situation especially if your dog meets another more aggressive one out on the street. Even if your dog is well trained it is still best to keep them inside the vehicle to avoid such incidents. 

Having to watch over your dog while driving can also lead to further accidents. If you suddenly lose control of your vehicle it can be very hard to both regain control and juggle handling your dog at the same time. This can then result in your ending up in an accident or hitting an object.

flying dirt and debris

Aside from the aforementioned dangers mentioned above your dog can also get hit by flying dirt and debris. This can also be as dangerous as falling out of the vehicle as your car is traveling at speed further increasing the risk of hurting your furry friend. They can get exposed to small rocks and dust which can cause injuries or irritation as these materials can easily puncture or scratch your dog’s eyes.

slightly open window

If you want your dog to experience the fresh outside air while you are driving then a safer alternative is to keep the window slightly open. In this manner, the scents of the outside will still be able to enter the vehicle giving him an aromatic experience. 

Keep in mind that you will need to make sure that the rear windows are locked meaning that only you have control over them as some dogs are smart enough to know how to open an automatic window. Another option you can do is to secure your furry friend with a seatbelt or a harness that will keep them in place. You can also attach them to a tether that is long enough for them to get their head out of the window. With that said, safety should be your top priority especially when it comes to your canine companion. 

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