Happy New Year!
We’re getting off to a hopping good start for 2020 with lots of exciting things planned for pet owners this year.
Here at Center for Pet Safety, everyday is Pet Travel Safety Day. We continually work to educate pet owners about what they need to know to protect the entire family while traveling together.
A few things pet owners should know:
Extension tethers are dangerous.
We see more and more brands developing add-on devices and marketing them to pet owners. These extension tethers and zip-line products should be removed from the marketplace because they increase the risk of injury for everyone in the vehicle.
Why do we say they’re dangerous? See for yourself…..
(Thank you to PipersWalk.org for sponsoring these tests!)
There are two classes of pet travel products: Distraction Prevention Tools and Crash Protection Tools.
Distraction Prevention Tools keep your pet secured in the back seat or cargo area, but in no way provide the best possible chance of survival for your pet if you are in a crash. In many cases, based on our testing, these harnesses, carriers, crates and pet travel seats have failed to hold up and could actually release your pet. That’s not good.
Crash Protection Tools keep your pet restrained in a crash to protect you and your family, and will give your pet the best possible chance of survival.
Think about what happens when you get into a vehicle. The first thing you do is put on your seatbelt. You are not given the opportunity to move around freely while driving. This passenger safety principle gives you the best possible chance of survival in a crash. The same principle applies to your pets. They are just as fragile as we are.
Crash Protection Tools are typically more restrictive than other products for a reason. They’re also more expensive. The due diligence the brands conduct increases the costs – and improves the performance of the product in testing. Look at it as an investment piece that could save your pet from pain and save you significant vet bills.
Injuries are no joke.
We speak with pet owners from around the globe. Injuries caused by a pet product are not a joke. These injuries can cost tens of thousands of dollars to treat and can be very painful for your pet. It’s one of the major reasons Center for Pet Safety exists. My dog was injured by a distraction prevention harness – that was marketed as a crash protection device. Lesson learned – always do your homework before purchasing a pet travel restraint. Every time we speak with a pet owner there are very common phrases we hear over and over – “I wish I’d known.” “Why aren’t these products required to be tested?”
Center for Pet Safety launched our CPS Certified Program in 2014 to help pet owners identify the safest brands on the market. Brands must pass our independent testing to make the list. Unfortunately, right now, it’s not a big list. Brands that manufacture and market extension tethers and zip-line products are automatically disqualified from participating – because they know these add-on devices increase the risk of injury. We have the science that proves it. These brands are welcome to participate in the CPS Certified Program, but must discontinue the manufacture of the add-on products. As long as pet owners continue to buy these dangerous products, these brands will continue to manufacture them.
The good news is that the CPS Certified program is growing. Over the past year we have met with a multitude of young brands that are working in the background to achieve certification. We are so grateful to these brands for participating and working so hard on their products in the background. If pet owners could only see the dedication from some of these companies to make a difference – it is inspiring. We’ll share more details on these brands once they complete the certification process. It takes time to create something worthy of being CPS Certified.
Hit the trails with happy tails! Happy Pet Travel Safety Day!
Lindsey A. Wolko, Founder, Center for Pet Safety