The Driving with Dogs team travel with dogs in the car a lot. And we're always looking for ways to keep mud, sand and dog hair to a minimum. As the summer gets underway we'll share some of the most successful solutions we've found so far. So, every driver has three chances to reduce dog-imported dirt getting into the car.
Before the walk
Popping the dog into a body suit before she even hits the ground is a popular plan. Remember that the tummy and tail area is still open (so the dog can wee) and most mud clings to doggie legs and tummies. So a body suit will cut down on wet fur in the rain, keep poochie dry, but not stop the dirt underneath. Tonka, shown here in purple, had a very smug owner at the end of this muddy walk in Somerset.
During the walk Choose your walk terrain wisely to avoid obviously muddy places. Some walks on Driving with Dogs cross fields and run beside rivers. These are fabulously cooling on a hot, dry day and a magnet for mud after days of rain. Country parks often have hard-surfaced paths and these are a blessing in torrential rain for drivers and dogs. Don't forget to use a welly bag to cut down on the mud you bring in too!
After the walk
Dog showers are available, with gadgets such as the Mud Daddy to clean the worst off in the car park. Some country parks have dog wash stations where you can give the dog a really thorough bath and dry for around £10. Other fresh water options include solar showers that can heat up while you're walking. Any plastic bucket with a lid will also warm up on its own and be ready to give your dog a one-throw dousing and clean your wellies too.
So now you have a clean-ish wet dog and this is where you need a plan. All dogs shake themselves to get dry, and muddy droplets will spread mud, sand and dog hair over your car. A crate won't save you here. Old bath towels help, but then you have the hassle of washing and drying these heavy items before the mud gets recycled again. And many holiday cottages and campsites ban dog towels and bedding from their washing machines.
PawDaw microfibre towels are the best we've found for first getting the dog dry, and then trapping particles of mud and sand within the fibre and not all over the car. You can also use the towels as bedding for the boot or as a soft layer inside a dog crate. Or just take it over, as Teddy is doing here! And the PawDaw towels are much lighter than normal ones, quicker to wash, easy to shake and extremely versatile.
PawDaw now also make warm, snuggly dogbags from the same top quality material and these are really clever. The weight of the fabric seems to calm dogs down, like a thundershirt or weighted blanket for kids, so in moments our youngster just goes to sleep. The dogbag also has a sturdy collar section of tougher material with an opening for a dog lead, so she can be safely confined to one place for a snooze.
Since writing this, PawDaw have very generously offered Driving with Dogs members a whopping 15% discount. To see the code you'll need to be signed in to your account (any account, Free or Premium) and use it at the PawDaw check out. We have no commercial links to PawDaw, and are simply sharing the love with you!
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