Choosing a Dog-Friendly Car

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Our Jeep has logged a lot of miles with our dogs--but we know that sooner or later we'll be looking for a replacement.

Our Jeep has logged a lot of miles with our dogs–but we know that sooner or later we’ll be looking for a replacement.

Is your car dog-friendly? Will your dogs be a factor in your decision when purchasing your next car?

This is a conversation we’ve been having a lot in our home. Both of our cars are older than old. My Jeep is now 15 years old, and our pickup is 14. We know the inevitable could come at any day: one of the vehicles will have a repair so costly that we decide it’s time for another (probably used) car.

Because of that frequent discussion (that we seem to have every time we all get out on the road), we read with particular attention AutoTrader.com’s new “Must-Shop Cars for Dog Lovers” list. AutoTrader.com’s recent poll showed 55 percent of the site’s visitors polled who own a dog said they actively seek out cars and trucks that can accommodate them. Of site visitors polled who have a dog, 75 percent take them in the car once per month or more, and 53 percent take them in the car at least once a week.

Factors in Choosing a Dog-Friendly Car

“It’s important to take your lifestyle into consideration when choosing a car, and for many people, this includes their dog,” said Brian Moody, AutoTrader.com site editor. “Dog owners should be mindful of the features that will make traveling with their dog easier, and if possible, even take their dog with them on the test drive to make sure the car is the right fit for everyone in the family.”

So what factors made a car especially dog-friendly? The list looked for cars that included multitude of comfort and convenience features that make a road trip more enjoyable for human and dog passengers including:

  • fold-flat seats
  • rear lift gate
  • low ride height
  • airy cabin
  • underfloor storage

Which Cars Are Most Dog-Friendly?

Which cars made the list? The AutoTrader.com list of most dog-friendly cars included:

  • Subaru Outback
  • Nissan Juke
  • Volkswagen Tiguan
  • BMW X3
  • Volvo V60
  • Kia Soul
  • Honda Odyssey

9cbaf13e-f81f-4aa6-9ca8-db3b85205b99For more information about the vehicles on the list and additional car shopping tips for dog owners, visit AutoTrader.com.

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About Paris Permenter

Paris Permenter is an award-winning author of over 30 pet and travel books. Along with her husband, John Bigley, Paris is the founder and publisher of CatTipper and DogTipper.

  • Jake P.

    I have a Toyota Matrix and it is great for the dogs. Has everything they need and is plenty roomy too.