With spring approaching and the weather warming up people are looking forward to taking their dogs along for days of fun in the sun, often allowing them to ride in the open bed of pickup trucks. It isn't safe for your dog to ride there and according to the Dr. Robin Ganzert of the Humane Society, “It is estimated that 100,000 dogs die each year riding in truck beds.”. Many pet owners believe that their dog is trained well enough not to jump out of the truck but fail to take into consideration the possibility of an accident or near accident that could result in the animal being thrown from the truck bed. Dogs thrown from vehicles can become a hazard to other drivers as they take evasive action to avoid running over your pet. In any case, tragedy strikes far more often than most people believe.
And of course there is the issue of comfortable transportation for the animal. Dogs do sunburn. Their noses can easily get burned and short haired dogs can burn on the skin beneath their short hair. Dogs can also burn their footpads. Direct sun causes the metal floor of the truck bed to become extremely hot, hot enough to literally burn the dogs feet. Consider the pain you feel when you put your hand on the side of a car that has been in the direct sun. Why would you deliberately put your beloved pet in that kind of agony?
There is also the danger of flying debris. This is also a factor for dogs that like to stick their heads out of the side windows. If flying rocks can chip the paint off of your vehicle, imagine what they can do to your dog. Bugs and rocks can cause serious injury to your pet's eyes and ears, so why take the chance?
Even though your best friend may seem to really enjoy the outside ride, he doesn't know any better. He doesn't know he could be injured or killed. It is the responsibility of the pet owner to keep his or her animal safe. Be safe, let your dog ride inside.