How Do Dog Owners Rate Cars?

by : Glady Reign

Pet owners do have extra considerations in purchasing cars. This is because they wanted to ensure safety and comfort even on board a car. Simply, they wanted the best for their pooches, felines and all other animals that a person could actually own as a pet.

Above all features, safety is ranking high. Safety features cover fabric used and height of doorstep. Dog owners, for one, rate cars according to safety and slobber concerns. This is the reason why some automakers are entertaining dog-friendly features in their product lines.

When traveling in a car, "animals need to be treated like people," said Joe Wiesenfelder who works as a senior editor at in Chicago. "The absolute best thing is to have the pet restrained, in a crate or in a harness," he said.

One of the famed automaker for pet lovers is Volvo. It is one of the handfuls of car makers that promote features specifically for dog hauling. Volvo is not only considering safety of persons but occupants in general, including pets. Hence, when it is designing cars, the quality of or other auto parts is not the only consideration - it takes into account other features to make it stand out from the rest of the cars in the market.

The Volvo V70 station wagon which is priced at $30,045 carries a steel barrier between the back seat and the cargo area. Volvo also sells vertical dividers and a back gate that swings open and they are priced at $157 and $95, respectively. The options are available in the XC70 and the XC90.

Traveling with dogs requires necessary accessories. The dogs, almost always, leaves wads of hair, slobber and annoying aftermaths of queasy tummies. Lisa Peterson, a dog breeder and the director of club communications for the American Kennel Club, said that she has driven as far as Denver from her home in Connecticut to enter her three Norwegian elkhounds in dog shows. So every time she travels, she carries large travel crates for her dogs.

Peterson added, "I measured my back clearance and made sure I had 48 inches across the back." She also chose leather seats, which are less likely to catch the elkhounds' long, thick hair. And she preferred a vehicle with a cargo hold that was low to the ground. "It's easier on the wear and tear of their hips, and it's easier to lift the kennels," she said.

According to a recent study by the American Kennel Club, about 47 percent of dog owners think of their pets when buying a car. Most are looking for a vehicle suitable for bringing their four-legged friend to the beach or park.

Automakers like Subaru, Honda and Chrysler are also offering auto accessories to protect occupants including pets. These accessories include rubber or plastic mats, steel barrier, washable urethane flooring, expandable cargo-hold, fabric designed to resist stains from dirt, oil, and stains. Additionally,, Petco Animal Supplies Inc., and other pet retailers sell removable plastic ramps that assist old or arthritic dogs climb into cars.