There is good news on the horizon for dog owners who enjoy traveling with their furry companions. Subaru of America, Inc. has teamed up with the Center for Pet Safety (CPS) to raise awareness of pet vehicle safety. Recently the team has released their results from a collaborative study that tested the effectiveness of pet safety harnesses that claim to have already been tested. However, there are no uniform test standards and protocols so these claims most likely cannot be trusted. Currently in the U.S. there are no performance standards or test protocols whatsoever for any type of pet travel products. Subaru has long been a promoter of animal welfare and safety, and they are as concerned about the safety of those that drive their vehicles as well as the passengers, human or canine.
How is Subaru of America and the Center of Pet Safety going to keep your best friend safe?
Lindsey Wolko, founder and CEO of the Center for Pet Safety remarks that, “Subaru and CPS share a common love for pets and safety, and it is our mission to communicate to pet owners that an effective harness should keep the pet in place to prevent distraction to the driver as well as offer measurable levels of protection to all passengers in the event of a crash.” Subaru and CPS, a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit research and advocacy organization, converged on the MGA Research Corporation. MGA Research is an independent National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), federally approved vehicle occupant testing lab. In the lab, they began to lay the groundwork for future performance standards and safety protocols for automotive pet safety products. The team began by looking into the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard’s for how child safety restraints must perform during testing. CPS then designed the test around these standards and conducted rigorous crash testing on some of the more commonly available pet safety harnesses.
What the testing revealed
We have all seen the crash dummies that vehicle manufacturers use when testing vehicle safety. CPS designed test dummy dogs much like their real counterparts that included a 25-pound terrier mix, a 45-pound border collie and a 75-pound golden retriever. They then strapped the dummy dogs in place and began the testing. Out of the seven types of safety harnesses tested, six ended in what researches called “catastrophic failure,” meaning that they “failed in a way that allowed the test dog to become a full projectile or released the test dog from the restraint completely.” One Harness, however, stood out about the rest and consistently passed all the rigorous testing, the Sleepypod Clickit Utility Harness. “Sleepypod has been researching and crash testing pet safety restraints in vehicles for six years because we’re serious about safety,” said Michael Leung, Sleepypod co-founder and product designer. “We admire CPS and Subaru for conducting this study on behalf of pet owners and use the CPS testing protocols as an extension of our own safety program.”
Safe traveling with your furry companion
“Safety for all passengers, including our pets, is very important to Subaru and to our drivers. Selecting the wrong harness could be just as detrimental as not using one at all,” said Michael McHale, director of communications at Subaru of America, Inc. “Most pet owners don’t know the dangers of not properly harnessing their pet while in the car. With nearly half of Subaru drivers also being dog owners, we want them to be as informed as possible.” Subaru is one of the few automakers to take such a devoted interest in the safety of companion animals in their vehicles. With more people including the family pet in their travels, even just to the local pet store, keeping them safe and happy is a goal of Subaru. One must also remember that no matter how safe a product may be considered whether it be seat belts, a child car seats or a dog safety harness, if not used properly it is like not providing any safety measures at all. Learn more about the Full Safety Report and Sleepypod pet products.
Subaru is dedicated to your entire family’s safety
When picking out a new car, it is important to think about the safety of the whole family, even your four-legged family members. Here at Subaru of Plano we are just as dedicated to their safety as you are, so visit today and let us make you a part of the Subaru family. We even cater to your canine companion with our new dog park, they can hang out and play while you search for your perfect vehicle. We have a great selection of new, certified pre-owned and used cars, trucks and SUV’s for you to choose from. We invite you to come down and meet us in person at 4480 W Plano Pkwy, in Plano TX. Let us help give you more peace of mind on the road in a great new or used Subaru!