Essential Car Accessories for Dog Owners

/ / Car Accessories
family driving with dog

Dogs have been our constant companions for a millennium. They’ve been with us through good times and bad times, countless wars, famines, celebrations, deaths, and births. Dogs have even earned the moniker “man’s best friend,” as a way to describe their ceaseless loyalty and unwavering friendship to humanity. Unsurprisingly, dogs continue to play a very large role in many of our lives today. They share our homes, our food, and, in many cases, even our beds.

Dog lovers around the world regularly ditch the indoors to spend some quality time with their furry friends, playing fetch, hiking, or even just going for a good walk. While some people may be able to step out their front door and do all of this, others must get in their cars and drive to the nearest park, beach, or trailhead. However, if you’ve ever taken your dog on a car ride, you probably understand the challenges that driving with your pet can entail. 

Dogs are wonderful creatures, but they can also be messy, and they sometimes get nervous or motion sick while riding in a vehicle. However, there are some tips you can follow to keep your pet comfortable on drives, and many dog owners purchase car accessories specifically for their furry friends. These devices can contribute to your pet’s safety and comfort and help keep your ride clean. We scoured the net and found several products that may help dog owners keep their cars comfy and fresh, and we based our selection on price, user reviews, and practicality. That said, we’ll cover our methodology later. Now, to help keep our canine companions cozy and happy, here are six must-have car accessories for dog owners.

Dog seat belt

COOYOO dog seat belts

Modern vehicles are packed full of safety features, including everything from blind spot warnings to advanced airbag and traction control systems. But while these innovations can go a long way toward keeping us safe on the road, they don’t do as much to protect our pets. Normal seat belts can’t contain our furry friends, and in the event of an accident, they could become severely injured or worse.

Fortunately, there are ways to protect our pets while cruising. The COOYOO Dog Seat Belt from Amazon could be a solid buy for dog owners and a great way to increase our furry friends’ safety on the road. The kit includes two adjustable dog car harnesses and a collapsible travel bowl. The belts adjust from 24 to 31 inches, and COOYOO advertises them as being strong enough to secure dogs of any breed. That said, the product description does not include a weight capacity for the seat belts. They’re designed for use with vest harnesses and feature no-tangle hooks and a seat belt adaptor built to fit nearly every mainstream vehicle. The interior elastic band is designed to prevent jarring shocks in the event of a crash, while reinforced carabiners help ensure that your pets are safe and secure during even the bumpiest rides. The kit costs $10.55 and features 4.6 out of five stars based on more than 30,000 user reviews.

Pet car seat covers

URPOWER pet seat covers

One of the major downsides to traveling with pets is the mess they can leave behind in our cars. Not only do dogs tend to shed a lot, but they may also drool, vomit, have mud on their paws, or go to the bathroom on our car seats. We can’t blame our furry friends. After all, they’re animals, and sometimes, they get carsick or just can’t hold it any longer — surely, many of us humans can relate. But that doesn’t make cleaning up the mess any less off-putting.

Luckily, we have some options when it comes to protecting our cars’ interiors and keeping our pets comfortable. The URPOWER Dog Car Seat Cover, available at Amazon, could be a great way for dog owners to keep their car seats clean while traveling with their canine companions. The product is both waterproof and weatherproof, meaning it can hold up to whatever your furry friends throw at it. It’s designed to fit most vehicles, from cars to trucks and SUVs, features side panels to protect your doors from scratches, and includes mounting loops and seat anchors to keep it secure as you cruise. The cover can be used in either your back seat or your vehicle’s cargo area, and the smell-resistant material is built to stay fresh, no matter how rowdy your dogs get. The cover costs $44.96 and has 4.6 out of five stars based on nearly 40,000 customer reviews.

Pet car booster seat

MARSLABO pet booster seat

For smaller pets, the backseat, or cargo area isn’t always the most ideal spot. Many of our tiniest furry friends prefer to sit up front with us where the action is. Even if they do like to sit in the backseat, it’s not always comfortable or stable for a smaller dog. We can put down beds or blankets for them to lie on, but those things tend to move around as we drive and may make our pets feel less safe and secure.

Instead, we can opt for a MARSLABO Dog Car Booster Seat from Amazon. The collapsible seat is built with a solid metal frame and includes a built-in seat belt to keep your furry friends safe. It features waterproof oxford material, a soft liner that can be removed for cleaning, and a double-sided pad to keep pets comfy and cozy. The seat is easy to install using the included straps and sits high up on your car’s seats to help your dogs see the road and avoid motion sickness. It’s designed for smaller dogs weighing up to 20 pounds and features durable metal safety buckles to help protect your canine companions. The seat comes with a price tag of $29.99 and boasts 4.5 out of five stars based on 7,000 user reviews.

Lint rollers

scotch-brite lint rollers

Try as we might, it’s impossible to avoid pet hair completely. We can put down whatever we want, and yeah, seat covers and blankets are a huge help. But at the end of the day, at least some hair and dander is going to make its way onto our clean surfaces, especially in a car, where you have lots of cramped and hard-to-reach spaces. When that inevitably occurs, we can either let it be or find a way to clean it up. The problem is that it can be incredibly tricky to remove even small amounts of pet hair.

Fortunately, there’s a time-tested solution for removing pesky pet hair that’s both affordable and efficient. Scotch-Brite Lint Rollers have been around for a while, and they’re go-to tools for pet owners around the country. Most of us understand how lint rollers work, but if you don’t, here’s a quick rundown. They’re basically rolls of tape with the sticky side facing out. The roller handle allows us to pass these tools over things like clothes, furniture, and even car seats to remove lint, pet hair, and other unwanted debris. Then, when one layer is full of trash, simply remove it and toss it in the garbage bin. Scotch-Brite lint rollers feature 100 sheets each, and you can purchase refills for the handles. The three-pack, available at Amazon, costs $16.99 and provides you with enough rollers to keep one in the car, one in the house, and one at work for emergencies. The rollers are extremely well-rated by customers and feature 4.6 out of five stars based on nearly 24,000 user reviews.

Poop bags

Earth Rated poop bags

It doesn’t matter how well-trained your dog is. When they have to go, they have to go. Most of the time, that’s not a huge issue. If you have a yard, your dog can go basically whenever they want. If you’re out for a walk, well, it’s essentially the same, but you’ll need to clean up their mess if it’s number two. Traveling in the car with your dog is similar to walking, but you may forget to carry your bags, or your furry friend may be unable to wait until you reach your destination.

To avoid leaving behind a pile of joy for the next pedestrian or in your car, you can purchase a box of Earth Rated Dog Poop Bags from Amazon. Keep them in your vehicle for emergencies or excursions with your canine companion. The environmentally-friendly bags are B Corp Certified and built with a thick, 100% leak-proof construction for security and peace of mind. They’re 13 by 9 inches in size, making them ideal for cleaning up doggy messes or even just keeping in the car for fast food trash. The pack comes with 270 bags and costs $16.79. Earth Rated dog poop bags are some of the most popular pet mess bags on the market, and the 270-pack from Amazon features 4.8 out of five stars based on more than 220,000 user reviews. 

Car cleaning kit

Armor All car care kit

Despite our best attempts at cleanliness, traveling with dogs is messy. Even if we somehow manage to prevent our pets from leaving behind hair, dander, and bathroom accidents, we’ll still need to deal with window smudges, paw prints, and any other treats our furry friends decide to leave us. When the inevitable messes appear, we can try to clean them up with household supplies and paper towels, or we can opt for a dedicated car care kit.

The Armor All Premier Car Care Kit, available at Amazon, contains everything you need to whip those interior automotive spaces into shape, and it could be a solid buy for anyone who likes to travel with their dog. It features a tire cleaner, multi-purpose cleaner, glass cleaner, an air freshener, a scrub pad, and more. The various products included in the kit cover all your bases — allowing you to detail your vehicle like a pro — and are capable of removing grime, smudges, oil residue, and numerous other stains and unwanted marks. The items can all fit neatly into a travel box or bucket, which you can then store discreetly in your trunk, cargo area, or behind a seat, allowing you to be prepared for spills and accidents wherever your travels take you. The Armor All kit costs $43.97 and features 4.5 out of five stars based on nearly 15,000 customer reviews.

Why did we choose these products?

dog with its head out a car window

We selected the items for this list based on a few criteria: price, product features, and user reviews. First, we searched for products that provide excellent value for dog owners. None of the items on this list cost more than $50, making each item accessible and economical for most average consumers. We also looked at product features and chose accessories that provide truly practical solutions to issues that dog owners face when traveling with their pets. From keeping our furry friends safe and comfortable to cleaning up their messes, each product covered here can provide a number of benefits to dog lovers while traveling. Finally, we considered user testimony, and we only selected products with high numbers of excellent ratings. Each product covered here has at least 4.5 out of five stars based on a minimum of 7,000 user reviews, and we prioritized products that customers described as useful, high quality, and of great value.

All of that said, remember to do your own research when shopping for car accessories for your pets. Consider your dog’s size and any special needs they may have when riding in the car, and remember to follow a few tips to keep your money safe while shopping on Amazon. Following those steps is quick and simple, and doing so can help you avoid the hassle of returning products that don’t work for you.

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