10 Awesome Car Features for Fluffy and Fido

Whether you take your furry friend along in the car for local excursions, extended road trips or needed visits to the vet, these ten features can make the ride smoother, safer and less stressful.

1. Ample Cargo Space

Separate cargo space located behind the last row of passenger seats in a car is ideal for cat carriers and medium or large dogs. This feature provides pets with a secure and roomy space to relax in their carrier during travel.

2. Leather Seating

Leather seats are more convenient than cloth seats in terms of cleaning stray pet fur or wiping down any unfortunate messes that may occur during a car ride. Vehicles with waterproof seats have an extra touch of pet friendliness.

3. Low/Wide Access Points

Dogs in particular benefit from cars that sit low enough to enter and exit without jumping. Vehicles with wide doors, such as the Ford Flex, or sliding rear doors, such as the Mazda5 Sport, offer additional ease of access.

4. Fold-Over Seats

Rear seats that fold flat are a great feature to consider if you regularly travel with multiple pets but no other people. With folding or removable seats, even the largest dog carriers fit safely within the vehicle during car trips.

5. Climate Control

Vehicles with all-around climate control give you the peace of mind in knowing that your pet is riding in a safe temperature range at all times.

6. Privacy Windows

Car windows designed with privacy glass help to keep your pet comfortable while on day trips as these windows block the sun’s strong heat rays from bearing down on your fur-covered friend.

7. Hands-Free Liftgate

Vehicles such as the newer-model Ford Escape and Ford Kuga are equipped with a foot-activated lift gate that allows you to open your rear hatch for pet access while holding cat carriers or leashed dogs.

8. Anchors and Tethers

The Mazda5 is an example of a car that provides extra security for pet seats and carriers through the availability of anchors and tethers in the rear passenger area. Your pet should be buckled in just like you.

9. Built-In Storage Bins

If you need to take extra food, water, toys or other pet supplies along on your excursion, then vehicles equipped with space-saving in-dash or in-floor storage compartments are a good buy for pet owners.

10. All-Wheel Drive

Cars designed with all-wheel drive not only offer your pet a more gentle ride in general but also help to reduce turbulence on road trips with bumpy terrains. Bottom line: A calmer pet makes for a happier journey.