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Does Your Dog Ride in the Front Seat?

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November 06, 2009

Does Your Dog Ride in the Front Seat?

By David DiBenedetto

My oldest brother got into the field trial game while he was still in college. At the time, he drove an old Buick Skylark sedan my father had graciously passed down to him. On the weekends when I was lucky enough to tag along, I remember waking before sunrise, shoving the crate in the Skylark’s back seat (and wedging a 4x4 underneath it so it sat even), loading the yellow Lab inside, and taking off for the trial. Once there, I didn’t notice ours was the only car in a sea of trucks and trailers—no doubt my brother did.

These days my dog rides in her crate in the back of my Jeep. But occasionally my wife allows Pritch in the front seat and, honestly, she behaves like the world’s most chill co-pilot—looking, sniffing, and enjoying the ride. And my good friend and fellow F&S contributor, T. Edward Nickens, says his Lab, Biscuit, always rides shotgun…even when Nickens is pulling carpool duty. Dog in the front seat…three girls in the back. Nickens and I both know it's not the safest mode of canine transport, but the up-sides of smiling dogs and red-light face licks are sometimes too good to pass up.

I know plenty of people who tote their dogs around untethered in the back of a pickup (which I’ve heard is illegal in some towns). But not me. There’s no way I’m taking the chance of having Pritch tossed from a truck on a busy road. When we’re getting around via pickup I drop the crate in the bed and secure it with tie downs.

I’m curious how your dog rides…shotgun, backseat, crate or back of the truck?

Comments (26)

Top Rated
All Comments
from Bella wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Not in the front seat! Harnessed in the back of the jeep she goes, so she don't bounce around inside like a pinball game! Saw a guy driving about with two Goldies in the back of a pickup, unsecured, made me kinda wonder,does that person actually give a dang about their dogs?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from philbourjaily wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

In the crate. Always. Anything else is an accident waiting to happen. I am humorless on this topic.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from kelmitch wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Only kenneled in the back of my suv.Everyone rides safe
that way even the dog.I read a story on one of my pheasant hunters forums were two guys were just driving
from one hunt to another just up the road and his prize
lab was tossed from the back of the truck and broke a leg
with the bone protruding threw the skin.Their being in a
hurry ruined a good dog.My dog is the last thing out of
the suv and the first back in the kennel safe.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from stormn wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

My chocolate lab, Jackson, rides in the backseat of my truck. He curls into a ball and sleeps before we make it out of the driveway. If we stop and he is not allowed to get out, there is a 100% chance that he will be occupying the front seat looking out the window when I return.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Koldkut wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Depends on the cleanlieness condition of the dog, I live on a ranch and most of the time she rides in the bed. I'm never horsin' around with her in the bed though, she rides in the front seat if she's not muddy, or anytime she has a vet appointment.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from bigjake wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

mine rides in the back seat and likes to place her head on the top of the headrest, looking out the windshield.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from CorieSquared wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Tobi only rides in the front with me! He has hip dysplasia, so I would worry too much about him sliding around the bed of my pickup truck. I only have a single bench in my truck, but I like having him with me.

Here's proof:

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=35773616

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Robert Ewing wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

As a pup Samual would jump across my lap and out the window at any bird in the field.Lesson learned,I crated him back in the bed of the truck.Then came Anu, two Brits in two crates competing for space with plumbing tools. The tools won , now they take the back bench preferably in a roading harness but always clipped to the shoulder strap.On the days I throw them in the back of the mini van , they sit there quietly hopeing I don't remember to clip them in.One true down side is that when we get near the field of our choice,in any weather down go the windows to clear the air.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from jersey pig wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

well, the golden who is the housedog rides in the front anywhere he goes. the brittany's (hunting dogs) ride in crates secured (probably over secured) in the back of the truck. only cause i want them to stay acclimated to being in the crates and when we are done hunting they are usually quite muddy. that being said all are spoiled as much as my child.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from coho310 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

I asked the question,"can you train a pug to be a gundog or retreiver?" And if they do ever go hunting with me,they'd be up front.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from labrador12 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

My dogs have always riden inside. I've been super cab'n it for the last decade or two and thats were Rudy, who I put down last week, rode for 15 years. Glock rides in the same place. He just got back from his third trip to Ak, supercab'n the whole way. My labs love it back there. Of course old Rudy would always get behind the wheel if you left him alone in the truck. I could tell you the stoy of how Rude shifted the truck into ......

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from beers123 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

It all depends on weather the woman is with us. It used to be Satins seat and she knew it. Now she is ridin in back seat (have a crew cab truck). Sometimes I wish Satin was upfront when the gfriend rides. Satin don't care how fast I drive and where we are going as long as we are going.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Del in KS wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Our Tundra has a fiberglass camper shell and the dogs go in a kennel in the back. They are out of the weather and can't get in trouble.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from chadlove wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

It depends. If I'm alone, taking one dog only and I'm just going hunting for a morning I leave the dog box at home and whichever dog I take rides shotgun. My truck is old, smells of dog and is covered in shed fur. I prefer it that way.

This morning I went duck hunting for a few hours and my little female rode up front with me. But if I'm with others, on an all-day hunt or I'm taking more than one dog they both go in the box.

And when I'm traveling to and from a training session I'll always load them in the box as well.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from huskerguy wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

It depends on how far I'm going. If I'm going a good distance Jade is kenneled up. But if I'm just marsh hopping she just rides in the back and lays down.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from coho310 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

I knew someone who had a dog's leash caught in a gap and she tryed to jump out and the collar broke her neck when she was in the bed of their Ford.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from shawey90 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

mine rides in the front seat with her head on my lap

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Rocco Stumpo wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

When I had an F150 my coonhound in the back seat. I cut a piece of plywood to fit on the back seat and covered it with indoor outdoor carpiting so cooper had more room and my seats stayed clean. Now I have an SUV he rides in the back with the seats down

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ontario Honker ... wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

My two labs are SUPPOSED to ride in the cargo area of my little Jimmy GMC. I lay down the back seat and they can look through between the bucket seats. The young dog will try to sneak into the passenger seat but I generally won't let her ride there. When she was a pup and first started hunting, I kept her in a kennel in the back seat. Learned a hard lesson there. Went in to ask a rancher if I could hunt pheasants, had a short visit, came back out to the rig to find that the loose pup had chewed on the forearm of my departed dad's cherry Browning Light-12 auto. NEVER leave a pup under 1.5 years alone in the house or car unless its in a kennel - or your insurance is up to date. Anyway, it's not practical to put two crates in the back of the Jimmy. But that definitely would be the safest way to transport. It does have tie down anchors built into the floor of the cargo area.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from anjadams wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

My Boykins usually ride in a kennel secured in the back but I do let them ride up front too sometimes if the arnt too dirty or wet.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from rolesville rocker wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

Nothing cooler than that big old Lab riding on the front seat or in the back of the truck...until some fool hits you in the side or rear and his head is splat on the windshield for skidding down the highway. We humans actually have hands to grip with and the knowledge of accidents to know to brace up. Can't say the same for a dog. If they're in a vehicle, they're in a box. Would you let your little kids rattle around in the back of the truck? Like some of the others, I'm obsessed about this. I spend way too many hours training, feeding, shoveling s*** to lose it in a freak accident.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from WA Mtnhunter wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

Both of my retrievers ride in the back seat of my extended cab, period. Wife will hear of nothing else.....

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jere Smith wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

You bet she does!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from muskiemaster wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

nope, but she's quite spoiled she's got a whole back seat to herself.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from BeardogRed wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

It always scares me a little , but my dog rides up front in pickup. I do worry if I would have an accident and most likely blame myself for not being more safe.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from HUNT OHIO wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

It depends, sometimes my GSD rides up front, sometimes in the back and on really late nites she drives home.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

from bigjake wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

mine rides in the back seat and likes to place her head on the top of the headrest, looking out the windshield.

+3 Good Comment? | | Report
from Bella wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Not in the front seat! Harnessed in the back of the jeep she goes, so she don't bounce around inside like a pinball game! Saw a guy driving about with two Goldies in the back of a pickup, unsecured, made me kinda wonder,does that person actually give a dang about their dogs?

+2 Good Comment? | | Report
from philbourjaily wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

In the crate. Always. Anything else is an accident waiting to happen. I am humorless on this topic.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from kelmitch wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Only kenneled in the back of my suv.Everyone rides safe
that way even the dog.I read a story on one of my pheasant hunters forums were two guys were just driving
from one hunt to another just up the road and his prize
lab was tossed from the back of the truck and broke a leg
with the bone protruding threw the skin.Their being in a
hurry ruined a good dog.My dog is the last thing out of
the suv and the first back in the kennel safe.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from stormn wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

My chocolate lab, Jackson, rides in the backseat of my truck. He curls into a ball and sleeps before we make it out of the driveway. If we stop and he is not allowed to get out, there is a 100% chance that he will be occupying the front seat looking out the window when I return.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Koldkut wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Depends on the cleanlieness condition of the dog, I live on a ranch and most of the time she rides in the bed. I'm never horsin' around with her in the bed though, she rides in the front seat if she's not muddy, or anytime she has a vet appointment.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from CorieSquared wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Tobi only rides in the front with me! He has hip dysplasia, so I would worry too much about him sliding around the bed of my pickup truck. I only have a single bench in my truck, but I like having him with me.

Here's proof:

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=35773616

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Robert Ewing wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

As a pup Samual would jump across my lap and out the window at any bird in the field.Lesson learned,I crated him back in the bed of the truck.Then came Anu, two Brits in two crates competing for space with plumbing tools. The tools won , now they take the back bench preferably in a roading harness but always clipped to the shoulder strap.On the days I throw them in the back of the mini van , they sit there quietly hopeing I don't remember to clip them in.One true down side is that when we get near the field of our choice,in any weather down go the windows to clear the air.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from jersey pig wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

well, the golden who is the housedog rides in the front anywhere he goes. the brittany's (hunting dogs) ride in crates secured (probably over secured) in the back of the truck. only cause i want them to stay acclimated to being in the crates and when we are done hunting they are usually quite muddy. that being said all are spoiled as much as my child.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from labrador12 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

My dogs have always riden inside. I've been super cab'n it for the last decade or two and thats were Rudy, who I put down last week, rode for 15 years. Glock rides in the same place. He just got back from his third trip to Ak, supercab'n the whole way. My labs love it back there. Of course old Rudy would always get behind the wheel if you left him alone in the truck. I could tell you the stoy of how Rude shifted the truck into ......

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from beers123 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

It all depends on weather the woman is with us. It used to be Satins seat and she knew it. Now she is ridin in back seat (have a crew cab truck). Sometimes I wish Satin was upfront when the gfriend rides. Satin don't care how fast I drive and where we are going as long as we are going.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Del in KS wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

Our Tundra has a fiberglass camper shell and the dogs go in a kennel in the back. They are out of the weather and can't get in trouble.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from chadlove wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

It depends. If I'm alone, taking one dog only and I'm just going hunting for a morning I leave the dog box at home and whichever dog I take rides shotgun. My truck is old, smells of dog and is covered in shed fur. I prefer it that way.

This morning I went duck hunting for a few hours and my little female rode up front with me. But if I'm with others, on an all-day hunt or I'm taking more than one dog they both go in the box.

And when I'm traveling to and from a training session I'll always load them in the box as well.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from coho310 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

I asked the question,"can you train a pug to be a gundog or retreiver?" And if they do ever go hunting with me,they'd be up front.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from huskerguy wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

It depends on how far I'm going. If I'm going a good distance Jade is kenneled up. But if I'm just marsh hopping she just rides in the back and lays down.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from coho310 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

I knew someone who had a dog's leash caught in a gap and she tryed to jump out and the collar broke her neck when she was in the bed of their Ford.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from shawey90 wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

mine rides in the front seat with her head on my lap

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Rocco Stumpo wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

When I had an F150 my coonhound in the back seat. I cut a piece of plywood to fit on the back seat and covered it with indoor outdoor carpiting so cooper had more room and my seats stayed clean. Now I have an SUV he rides in the back with the seats down

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Ontario Honker ... wrote 4 years 23 weeks ago

My two labs are SUPPOSED to ride in the cargo area of my little Jimmy GMC. I lay down the back seat and they can look through between the bucket seats. The young dog will try to sneak into the passenger seat but I generally won't let her ride there. When she was a pup and first started hunting, I kept her in a kennel in the back seat. Learned a hard lesson there. Went in to ask a rancher if I could hunt pheasants, had a short visit, came back out to the rig to find that the loose pup had chewed on the forearm of my departed dad's cherry Browning Light-12 auto. NEVER leave a pup under 1.5 years alone in the house or car unless its in a kennel - or your insurance is up to date. Anyway, it's not practical to put two crates in the back of the Jimmy. But that definitely would be the safest way to transport. It does have tie down anchors built into the floor of the cargo area.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from anjadams wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

My Boykins usually ride in a kennel secured in the back but I do let them ride up front too sometimes if the arnt too dirty or wet.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from rolesville rocker wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

Nothing cooler than that big old Lab riding on the front seat or in the back of the truck...until some fool hits you in the side or rear and his head is splat on the windshield for skidding down the highway. We humans actually have hands to grip with and the knowledge of accidents to know to brace up. Can't say the same for a dog. If they're in a vehicle, they're in a box. Would you let your little kids rattle around in the back of the truck? Like some of the others, I'm obsessed about this. I spend way too many hours training, feeding, shoveling s*** to lose it in a freak accident.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from WA Mtnhunter wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

Both of my retrievers ride in the back seat of my extended cab, period. Wife will hear of nothing else.....

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from Jere Smith wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

You bet she does!

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from muskiemaster wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

nope, but she's quite spoiled she's got a whole back seat to herself.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from BeardogRed wrote 4 years 22 weeks ago

It always scares me a little , but my dog rides up front in pickup. I do worry if I would have an accident and most likely blame myself for not being more safe.

0 Good Comment? | | Report
from HUNT OHIO wrote 4 years 21 weeks ago

It depends, sometimes my GSD rides up front, sometimes in the back and on really late nites she drives home.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

Post a Comment

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