The safest way for your Morkie to ride in the car with you? Hands down, it’s a dog car harness which basically acts as a dog seat belt.  In fact if you don’t restrain your Morkie, he could cause an accident by distracting you. And in an accident, he becomes a dangerous projectile. A Dog Car Harness can solve that.

Dog on lap?

It’s just plain stupid when you think about it. As a former fan of letting my pup “help” me drive, I know it’s a big distraction. Way worse than texting and driving, I’m sure.

And just because you’ve always done it, doesn’t make it safer or smarter. A study done by AAA and Kurgo study found that 65 percent of respondents had engaged in one or more distracting activities while driving with their dog.

Besides being a distraction, an unrestrained dog is literally a loose canon. In the smallest of fender benders, your dog becomes a missile, hurtling through the air at a tremendous speed.

Letting your dog sit on your lap when you’re the passenger, isn’t a lot better. In the case of an accident, there’s no way you can hold on to that little pup.

Or, he could be crushed by the airbag. They explode with so much force that they can severely injure or even kill lightweight front-seat passengers, including small children and pets.

Is it legal to drive with an unrestrained dog?

In many places, it is illegal. In England for example, tells us:

According to the Highway Code, motorists must ensure “dogs or other animals are suitably restrained so that they cannot distract you while you are driving or injure you, or themselves, if you stop too quickly”.

And guess what? If you have an accident and it’s clear you were distracted by your dog, your insurance doesn’t have to pay out!

airbags deploy with tremendous force


Any object in your car becomes a projectile or rocket in an accident. Even your precious Morkie.

Sure, we all used to do it

Ride without seatbelts that is. And we even encouraged kids to stick their heads out the window.

Cute, but oh so dangerous!

When dogs stick their heads out the window…

… they’re getting a big, HUGE gulp of air scented with all sorts of wonderful things. Since their power of scent is somewhere around FORTY TIMES GREATER than ours!

But, their eyes are vulnerable to grit and bits in the air, larger particles, even stone chips. All that stuff can scratch his eye and certainly irritate it. 

Plus, what if your Morkie fell out of the car!?

The solution: dog car harness or carrier cage

To protect your Morkie, keep him in the back seat, in a carrier cage that’s strapped in. Or, in the back seat, in a dog car harness.

He probably won’t like it at first, especially if he’s used to sitting on your lap or roaming around unrestrained. But tell him it’s for his own good 🙂

What to look for in a good dog car harness

You’ll want a harness that’s passed independent crash tests; they’re not all equal. The Centre for Pet Safety has tested many different restraints, and has recommendations based on the results. (Trust the Center – they don’t accept funding from pet product manufacturers; they’re independent and work in the consumer’s interest.)

CPS Certified Dog Car Harnesses, recommended by the Center for Pet Safety

Sleepypod Clickit Sport  (Sm, Med, Lg, XL)

Sleepypod Clickit Terrain  Sm, Med, Lg, XL)

ZuGoPet The Rocketeer Pack

We gotta do better

A recent study by Volvo of 2,000 dog-owning motorists shows we’re not thinking pet safety.

Though 97% said they take their dogs for a ride, 48% don’t own any safety gear and 41% let their dogs ride in the front seat. Just 5% have a pet-safety system built into in their car.

And that’s Volvo owners, generally pretty safety conscious.

Sleepypod Clickit Sport – Certified and Crash-Tested Dog Safety Harness

Clickit Sport is Sleepypod’s next generation dog safety harness.

The unique Infinity Loop design, in combination with an energy absorbing padded vest, is engineered to work together to distribute and reduce damaging forces in an accident without the need of additional hardware or attachment straps. (There are loops on the sides, along the rib cage, through which you thread the seatbelt.) 

Sleepypod Clickit Terrain Safety Harness

  • Crash tested for use as a car seat belt.
  • Three-point design for use in rear passenger seat secures a dog’s entire torso
  • Strength tested for use as a walking harnessQuick connection and release when used as a car seat belt
  • Rear reflective patches for night visibility can be interchanged for service patches or custom patches
  • Loops for quick connection and release of optional Terrain Pack

Check it out at your local pet supply store, or check them out at

More Reading

You can check out how the Center for Pet Safety monitors restraints here.

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