Best Dog Car Seat for Small and Large Dogs - Booster Seats

Best Dog Car Seat of 2019

If possible, you’ll want to take your dog with you in each of your road trips. Dogs are part of the family, right? And as you would for everyone, it’s important to ensure your canine companion is safe and comfortable while inside the car. Investing in a dog car seat is one way you can do so.

Reasons to Use the Best Car Seat for Dogs


Dogs looking out the window are an adorable sight. But without a harness or a car seat, they can be in danger. This can also pose safety hazards to everyone they’re sharing the ride with. Let’s talk about more reasons why dogs need their own car seats.


  • Dogs can be distracting. In 2011, AAA and Kurgo conducted a survey and found pet parents admitting to taking their hands off the wheel to stop their dog from climbing the front seat. That means taking attention away from the road, which is comparable to the risks involved in using mobile phones while driving.


  • Dogs can be a dangerous projectile. In the event of an impact, dogs can get thrown out of the car or hurt themselves or other passengers. Even if your dog is used to traveling and is always well-behaved inside the car, that won’t save them or you from sustaining injuries during a crash.


  • Dogs may panic during an accident. Once they panic or get stressed, dogs may escape or bite. You’ll want to keep your dog from doing something that may expose them or other passengers to further harm.


  • Keep your car interiors clean. By using a dog car seat, you can protect your car interiors from messes, scratches, or accidents. There are dog car seats that are made easy to clean and waterproof so you also won’t have a hard time cleaning your car.


  • Protect your dog from choking hazards. By keeping your dog secure in a specific location, you also keep them from reaching your valuables and playing with choking hazards or poisonous substances.


  • Airbags can kill dogs. The force of an airbag can cause danger to car passengers. Avoid having your dog occupy the front-seat. It’s best to let them stay in the backseat and safely restrained.



Choosing the Best Dog Car Seat


Whether you decide to shop from physical stores or go online, the selection for a pet car seat can be overwhelming. There’s a lot to choose from – colors, designs, prices, and features. To help you make the right decision, we listed down critical factors you might want to consider.


Let’s begin.


  • Ease of use. There are dog owners that confess to having a dog car seat but are not using it. One factor is the effort it takes to set up the equipment. Be sure that the dog car seat you choose is easy to assemble to motivate you to use it all the time. This also helps a lot if you’re traveling with kids.


  • Storage. You might want to as well consider how the equipment is packed away. Is it foldable or collapsible? Does it take too much space? Will it fit in your car?


  • Safety features and accessories. Check if the dog car seat allows you to attach it properly to the back seat or the headrest. There should also be leashes to keep your dog in place throughout the drive.


  • If your dog often gets into accidents, you’ll want a dog car seat that is machine washable. It’s a bonus if the cover is removable so you can clean it more easily.


  • Size and comfort level. The car seat should allow your dog enough space to sit comfortably or lie down as they please. If you want, you can also check out options that let your dog look out the window with ease.


  • How much padding do you think your dog will need? Will they feel more comfortable in thicker padding? Or perhaps you have dogs with allergies and may require hypoallergenic materials.


  • Dog car seats come in various price points. The luxury choices may have more extras while too cheap products may not last as long or probably might not have features you’re looking for. There’s no single best choice and it’s not good to look at the price alone.


  • Pet parent reviews. Listen to what other pet parents have to say about products they have tried, especially if you have the same dog breeds. When buying online, it pays to look at photos and personal experiences of other users before making your final decision.


It feels tempting to purchase a product that seems to be working well with another pet parent that you trust. But remember, every dog is unique. Pay attention to what matters most for you and your pet.



Safest Dog Car Seat


We gathered information about highly-rated dog car seats online and compiled them here.


Please note, however, that pet parents are referring to a specific breed when they describe their experiences with a product. It helps, though, to read through claims or cautions so you can also set your expectations.


There may not be a 100% perfect product, but there’s one that will be right for your dog. It may have minor disadvantages, but as long as it does its job well, then that shouldn’t be a big deal. That being said, let’s move forward to the list.


Here it is, in no particular order:



Snoozer Dog Car Seat


With almost 2,000 customer reviews and a 4.5-star rating, this dog car seat may be one of the best you’ll find in the market.


It can be used for pets up to 25 pounds. And pet owners that are looking for easy-care products will be happy that this item comes with a washable and dryable cover. What’s more, the cover also repels hair.


The doggie car seat can be used in both warm and cold months. And it’s also equipped with a security strap and a connection strap. If you want a product that will blend well with your car’s interior, this dog car seat won’t disappoint. It’s available in various color and fabric options.


What Customers Say:


Pet parents shared that the product was a great purchase and better than they expected.


Their dogs love it and feel comfortable in it. Their dog is secured with the car seat. There’s enough space for their canine companion to move a bit and they can also enjoy the view outdoors if they want to.


Overall, they’re happy with the well-made product and would recommend it to other pet parents, too.



Snoozer Large Lookout II


At first glance, it looks exactly the same as the Lookout I, but this version is packed with more features you might want.


Also rated 4.5 stars, this model comes in three sizes. You can choose one that suits your dog. The interior is made of faux wool that is comfortable in both winter and summer seasons. There’s also a pet storage tray underneath the seat where you can keep your pet’s essentials.


What Customers Say:


Pet owners have mixed opinions about this car seat. Some couldn’t be happier with their purchase, saying their dog loves it even before they get to actually use it inside the car.


They were happy that the seat is large enough to accommodate their pet. There is enough space for the dogs to stand up and take a nap comfortably.


Some are disappointed, on the other hand, about the bottom padding of the car seat as it reacts with leather upholstery. Some are concerned about the cleaning part.



K&H Pet Products Bucket Booster Pet Seat


It’s hard to go wrong with a product that has a perfect customer rating and over a thousand reviews, to boot. That’s the case with this bucket booster pet seat from K&H.


It comes with two adjustable security leashes and you can place it in either the front or back seat. Your dog can enjoy a better view of their environment as their seat is elevated.


The product is also easy to use, which is perfect for busy travelers or those traveling with kids. Depending on the size of your dog, you can choose between the small and large sizes.


What Customers Say:


Pet parents are very happy with their purchase, some even describe the product as the best dog car seat. They’re glad they decided to go with this pet seat after reading several reviews from other pet owners.


Their dogs can look out the window, entertain themselves with the view, and are not distracting them.


One pet parent shared she got into an accident after hitting an elk. Her car was badly damaged and she was treated for fracture. But her dogs are safe and unharmed while in their booster seat.



Petsfit Booster Seat/Lookout Car Seat for Small Dogs

Another highly-rated car seat online is this item from Petsfit. It comes with a plush lining that you can remove and throw in the washer for cleaning.


There’s only one leash but there’s also a seatbelt that you can attach on the back and then over the headrest. This booster seat can accommodate dogs that are up to 45 pounds.


What Customers Say:


Customer shared they used the product for long drives and their dogs are happy with it. They also appreciate that the seat is elevated as their furry babies can look out the window comfortably.


They find the seat sturdy and stable long as it’s properly strapped. The small pockets that come with the booster seat can be used to store pet accessories. They also find the product easy to install and will recommend it to other pet parents like them.



Stella and Bear Cozy Boost Dog Booster Seat


With an impressive 4.5 star rating, it’s hard not to take a second look at this dog booster seat by Stella and Bear.


It can accommodate dogs that are up to 20 lbs. It comes with a collapsible silicone dish and a clip-on leash for your furry baby’s safety. The frame is made of metal and the fabric used is easy to clean.


The materials are chosen to ensure your dog stays comfortable during cold or warm seasons. The size is also large enough to add in a pillow or blanket for extra comfort. You can use the seat for either front or back seat. The manufacturer offers a lifetime warranty.


What Customers Say:


Pet parents are very happy with this product. They shared that their dogs loved it.


They no longer have to worry about their furry babies causing them distractions while driving. Plus, the dogs can look out the window conveniently since their seat is elevated. It also helped a lot that the liner is washable.


During accidents, pet owners can easily wash them and the quality stays the same still. Because there is ample space and the bottom feels sturdy, their dog is able to lie down and sleep soundly inside the booster seat.



Devoted Doggy Deluxe Dog Booster Car Seat Premium Quality


Designed for small and medium dogs, this boosted seat by Devoted Doggy may be the solution you need for active dogs during travels. The seat is easy to install and comes with adjustable straps. It’s also lined with extra-soft removable padding for easy washing.


Since it comes in a hanging style, your dog will have a good view of their surroundings. There’s also a pocket on the side of the seat which you can use for keeping your dog’s accessories. The metal frame is collapsible which also makes storage easy.


What Customers Say:


Customers know that it’s not safe to be driving and dealing with a dog at the same time. They found a solution in this dog booster car seat. Pet owners are happy that this product has made their dogs calm and well-behaved throughout the ride.


One pet parent said the chair is high enough to keep their dog from jumping out.


Another said they love that the product includes an adjustable leash to keep the dog under control. However, one improvement she suggests is having a padded strap as the bare nylon strap may eventually damage the leather seat.



Kurgo Skybox Booster Seat for Dogs


The price for the product varies depending on whether you’re purchasing a brand new or used item. But with other a thousand reviews, the question is likely not so much about the price but what it can do for you and your dog during long drives.


Kurgo, the manufacturer, has been in the business since 2003. This specific booster seat will help keep your pet from distracting you. And at the same time, keep your pet relaxed, safe, and secure.


It’s also designed to be easy-care. The exterior fabric is waterproof and the inner lining can be tossed into the machine. It also comes hanging-style, which means your dog can have a good view of their surroundings.


The package also comes with an adjustable seatbelt tether that you can attach to your dog’s harness. The manufacturer offers a lifetime warranty for their products.


What Customers Say:


Pet parents are happy with the product as their pets find it comfortable and cozy. Plus, installing the booster seat is also effortless, as another customer describes.


Another pet parent shared that the car seat helped their dog overcome car sickness. They have tried other products before but nothing worked like this booster seat.


Some parents, however, are concerned about the D-ring being too big. They were also worried about the metal clips that might get too hot in the summer.



PetSafe Solvit Pet Safety Seat


This pet safety seat by PetSafe lets your pet enjoy long drives with you without being a distraction.


The seat is made tall so your pet can get a clear view of their environments. The package comes with plastic panels that you can assemble without the need for tools. Instructions are provided. The liner is also removable and washable to ensure your pet stays safe and fresh.


The product’s safety tether, according to the manufacturer, has been crash-tested to 2000 pounds. The manufacturer also offers -ta US-based customer support in case pet parents have any concerns with their purchase.


What Customers Say:


Pet owners say that it probably isn’t the highest-quality dog car seat there is but it still is impressive for what it delivers for its price. It’s affordable compared to other choices and the size is right enough to fit their dog comfortably.


One pet parent said using the car seat has saved their dog’s life after they got into an accident. The leash that attached to the harness prevented their dog from getting thrown out of the windshield.


A customer shared that the pieces can be challenging to put together, but still manageable. Another disadvantage they listed is the lack of padding for the walls.



PupSaver Crash-Tested Car Safety Seat for Small Dogs


From PupSaver comes this rear-facing dog car seat, which can be tough to find in the market. As you may have noticed, this is the only one of its kind on this list.


According to the manufacturer, all of their safety seats have been tested at a laboratory approved by the NHTSA. The seat works to provide maximum protection against impact. The seat is also made of soft nylon to ensure your dog’s comfort.


It comes in one size, two color options, and can accommodate pets that are up to 30 pounds.


What Customers Say:


According to pet parents, the product is good but can use improvements. They’re concerned about the back of the seat folding over the dog. Some shared that they even had to tie the seat to stop it from curving down.


Others also shared that taking the seat in and out of the car can be challenging. The back folds over, losing its form. Overall, they’re still glad about the purchase. It added to their peace of mind that the product was rigorously tested for safety.



Dog Car Seat Pet Booster Seat Pet Travel Safety Car Seat


From Bloblo, this is another pet booster seat that’s worth checking out. Available in three colors, the set is made of oxford cloth that is resistant to tear. This may be an ideal choice for dogs that love chewing.


The material also helps keep pets warm during cold seasons. The product is easy to install and comes with an adjustable bucket that is compatible with various car types. The seat can be installed either in the front or rear seat.


You will also find storage bags on both sides of the seat where you can store your pet’s essentials. As for cleaning, the mat is removable and can be machine washed. However, the manufacturer says the product can only accommodate small pets.


What Customers Say:


Pet owners are happy with the quality of the product as well as with the seller.


They shared that their concerns were addressed promptly. They love that the seat is easy to install, as the manufacturer claimed, and that their dog is comfortable in it.


One pet parent said their pet slept comfortably in the seat. Another customer reported the product was flimsy. While others said that their pets love it.



Pet Gear Lookout Booster Car Seat


This pet booster seat from Pet Gear has the same goal as other pet boosters and that is to keep you and your pet safe on the road. The seat is made of sturdy foam covered with soft microsuede fabric.


The package also comes with a plush pillow that is removable and machine washable. The seat can hold two small pets so you might want to consider this if you often travel with two small furry babies.


The manufacturer says there’s no assembly required and that the booster can be attached with ease to the car seat.


What Customers Say:


The product garnered mixed opinions from pet parents. Some were disappointed with the quality, saying that the cushion is poorly stuffed.


One owner reported that their pet’s foot got stuck on the tether and pierced his skin after he tried to get out from it. Hence, they do not recommend using the tether that comes with the seat.


Other pet parents are happy with the product, saying it’s sturdy, stylish, and their pets can easily look out the window from it.



Where Should I Place the Dog Car Seat?


For safety reasons, it’s best to have your dog at the back of the passenger side seat. This will also allow you to check on your pup with ease. Plus, your dog will be able to see you.


If your car has three rows, keep your furry baby in the row closest to you. In case you need to have your dog seated at the front, push the seat as far back as possible. You’ll want to avoid the airbag from hitting your dog should it go off.



How to Introduce Your Dog to Car Seats


If it is your first time to have your dog use a car seat, be sure to spend time introducing them to their new ‘place’ while on the road. They may hesitate or feel scared to get inside.


Make it a step-step process. Offer them treats to encourage them to get their feet (or even foot) inside. Once you see they’re already stepping inside, try to practice them to stay longer in it.


Associate the car seat with positive things and experiences to get your dog to love it.



Safety Tips When Traveling with Your Dog


Dog booster seats offer peace of mind to parents. But remember that you’re the one deciding which product you feel is safest for your pet. It also helps to know more safety tips when driving with your canine companion. Here are some of them:


  • If possible, bring someone with you. Even when dogs are usually calm, they may get nervous all of a sudden. This can be a real distraction when you’re behind the wheel. It helps to have someone with you to look after your dog so you can focus on the road.


  • Keep your dog restrained. Keep your dog secured. Have them wear a seat belt. Also, be sure to attach the car seat tether do their safety harness. Don’t attach anything to their leash as this can result in choking or neck injuries.


  • Never leave your furry baby in the car. Even if it’ll only take you a while, don’t leave your dog alone in a car. This is also one benefit of having a company so someone can watch over your dog if you need to do something and can’t bring them with you.


  • Watch tutorials on proper installation. Some dog seat options may be a breeze to assemble while some may require more effort. To ensure that you’re installing the seat properly, go through the manufacturer instructions carefully. If that is not enough, look for tutorial videos online. You might just gather more helpful tips from other pet parents like you.


  • Take your dog for quick rides. If this is the first time you’re taking your furry baby out for a long drive, prepare them for it. Take them for short, quick rides first, using their booster seat.


  • Feed your dog small meals prior to the drive. Give your furry bets buddy a light meal at least three hours prior to your departure. Keep them comfortable by ensuring they’re not too full, but also not hungry, during the drive. Also, avoid feeding your dog while the car is moving.


  • Introduce your dog to their booster seat. Take the time to introduce the booster seat to your dog before having them use it for a long drive. Some dogs are hesitant of trying anything new when it comes to car rides. Let them see and try it at home. Once you see they’re getting inside with ease, take them to short drives with you.


  • Don’t let your dog peek outside with head out the window. Your dog may get hit by flying objects or rushing vehicles. The good thing with pet booster seats is that you no longer have to keep the window open. Your dog will be in an ideal height to comfortably look outside without having to stand or take their head out.


  • Bring your own water. Just as you want to be cautious about the water you’re giving your family, be careful as well for your furry baby. Bring your own jug or bottled water from home.


  • Consider investing in waterproof or washable seat covers. Although there are washable and waterproof dog booster seats, as an added protection, you may want to purchase one for your car seat, too. This is especially useful for families with dogs that often have accidents on the road.



Already Have a Dog Car Seat in Mind?


Don’t hesitate to visit the manufacturer’s website for further information or perhaps contact their support team. It’s better to be sure the product will be able to accommodate your pet than have to go through a return or exchange process later on.


This step may also help you gauge which team is easy to communicate with for product concerns.



Enjoy the Ride!


Treasure the moment you get to spend with your favorite canine companion. The mess is temporary but the fun memories are priceless and are sure to make you smile (or laugh) anytime.