This video, featuring veterinary physiotherapist Lindsey Connell, demonstrates how to safely get an injured patient in and out of your car. She demonstrates how to do this with and without an assistant.

How to safely transport a dog

When transporting an injured dog in and out of a car, you are trying to keep your pet safe and comfortable as well as yourself. 

So when you perform these actions, you should consistently:

  • Keep the dog close to your body
  • Be cautious with your back and use your hips and knees to lift

If your dog is a larger and heavier breed, it’s best to have two people perform these actions safely. 

Some of these actions are easier to perform if your pet is wearing a harness.

Getting your injured dog into your car:

Open your car door before lifting your dog to avoid awkwardly juggling and risking injuring them or yourself.

To transport an injured dog in and out of a car you have to:

  1. Get down to your dog’s level by bending your knees and get as close to them as you can
  2. Avoiding specifically damaged areas, place your hands so that you will keep the dog’s body level as you lift them
  3. Lift your pet into the safe position which is at a comfortable height for you and balanced for them (if lifting with another person, coordinate your lift time by counting down from three for example)
  4. Get close to the car and position your dogs front legs towards the seats and let them find their footing
  5. Then slide their back legs in so that the dog is standing comfortably in your vehicle

If your pet is more mobile, you could also try this method:

  1. Walk them close to the car and encourage them to put their front feet up into the vehicle (you can help them up with their front legs by lifting at their chest, just behind the front legs)
  2. Once their front feet are up into the vehicle, bend your knees and get to your dog’s level then place your hand under its stomach
  3. Carefully help your dog lift its back leg by lifting them from behind

Getting your injured dog out of your car:

This action is far easier if your pet is wearing a harness as you can support their weight from the top handle.

  1. Encourage your dog to come to the edge of the seat (this will prevent you from straining your back)
  2. Place your hand under your dog’s chest, just behind its front legs
  3. Support the weight of your dog with your other hand so that it is level (this is where your harness will be helpful)
  4. Carefully lift your dog and then slowly bring them to the ground (minding your back and being careful not to drop them)

If you have any questions:

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