Some areas in the nation require that pets be restrained while riding in cars. The idea seems to make sense but how effective are they?
The Center For Pet Safety decided it was about time for someone to try them to see how well they work. The site linked to contains slow-motion videos of their tests using very realistic looking models of dogs. They are disturbingly real-looking.
The focus of this pilot study is to determine the general effectiveness of canine automotive restraints. Do they prevent injury of the pet? Do they prevent secondary injury to humans in an automobile accident?
Because standardized testing does not exist for this class of pet product, we used a test generally referenced by some canine safety harness manufacturers, the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 213 for child restraint systems.
Using FMVSS 213 conditions, CPS tested a control group of readily available canine automotive restraints. The testing was conducted at MGA Research Corporation’s test facility located in Manassas, Virginia. MGA Research also performs testing services for the U.S. Department of Transportation, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). For the purpose of this initial study, we tested products intended for large dogs, generally 50-85 pounds. (Sample breeds in this size include Poodles, German Shepherds, Irish Setters, Labrador Retrievers, Boxers, and Weimaraners.)
The pilot study was completed using a specially designed crash test dog model weighing 55 lbs. We do not use live animals in our testing.
Results and Analysis: What We Learned
Alarmingly, the pilot study revealed a 100 percent failure rate. None of the harnesses were deemed safe enough to protect both the dog and the humans in the event of an accident.”