Country music songs are known for their sense of Americana—distant train whistles, love for family, broken hearts and a dog in the back of a pick-up.
Romantic imagery for sure, but unfortunately, our bubble has to burst.
The pick-up is not the best place for the dogs to ride.
Since the cabs of pick-up trucks might only be a front bench seat, dogs are often shown the bed of the truck for a trip.
But though it seems convenient, American Humane strongly cautions against letting dogs hang out in the back of pickups, stating that an estimated 100,000 dogs die in accidents yearly riding in truck beds.
100,000 dogs! That’s so many!
One obvious reason is that dogs jump, especially if they are curious or scared. Even if they are trained or have calm personalities, if there’s an accident, they can fall or jump out of the bed and get seriously injured or cause other collisions.
The bed of a truck can be much colder or hotter than the cab, where the temperature is controlled. Since there’s no protection back there, wind can also blow debris around getting into dogs’ ears, noses, eyes and mouths. In the heat of summer, metal beds can burn paws.
Even leashing or crating the dog while they are in the bed can causes more problems than protection. Dogs can be strangled if they are thrown from a truck while leashed. If a dog is confined in a crate, it could prevent them from escaping in case of an accident.
Some dogs love being back there. Other dogs may get anxious at the noises and confusion of the road.
It turns out, there are really a lot of reasons to keep them out of the bed of the truck. And your dog is your best friend, right? So keep them safe – and in the truck next to you.