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Best Cars for Dog Lovers 2022: Autotrader Detroit 3 Vehicles

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For many dog ​​owners, making sure Fido fits in the car is one of the top considerations when buying a vehicle.

Yet many car buyers don’t take Fido to the dealership for a test drive. To help, car-buying site Autotrader released its ninth annual list of the best cars for dog lovers on Tuesday, just in time for National Dog Day on Friday. Two of Detroit’s three automakers were on the list.

“Some owners bring dogs into dealerships and some don’t. They should,” said Autotrader editor Brian Moody. “They’re doing you a disservice by selling you an item for $40,000. It’s your decision to make, so you have to bring your stuff there, whether it’s a child safety seat or of a dog. Make sure it works for you.”

According to American Veterinary Medical Association, 38% of American households have at least one dog. The Association puts the number of companion dogs in the United States at around 77 million.

A recent Autotrader survey found that over 85% of dog owners consider driving with their dog when buying a car, and two-thirds of dog owners take their dog for a drive at least once a week. The survey, conducted earlier this summer, interviewed 600 dog owners, Moody said.

Autotrader’s Best Cars for Dog Lover 2022 take dog-friendly factors into account that provide dog owners with the best vehicle options.

“All vehicles on this list have pet-friendly accessories,” Moody told the Free Press. “We also looked at cars that are just good cars. Every car in there scores a 3.5 or higher on our five-point scale for vehicles.”

Here are Autotrader’s best 2022 cars for dog lovers in alphabetical order:

  • Chrysler Pacifica 2022
  • 2022 Ford Bronco Sport
  • 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe
  • 2022 Jeep Wrangler
  • 2022 Kia Soul
  • 2022 Ram ProMaster City Wagon
  • Subaru Outback 2022
  • Tesla Model 3 2022
  • Toyota Sienna 2022
  • 2022 Volvo XC60

To select the best cars for dog owners, Autotrader experts started with vehicles that offered a host of pet-friendly features and accessories, Moody said. For example, they looked for a low floor for easy entry, rear heating and air conditioning vents to keep the animal comfortable, and accessories such as soft crates and harnesses to keep the dogs safe. .

“Almost every year there’s a Volvo and a Subaru on the list because they have amazing pet-friendly accessories like water bowls, built-in crates, seat covers for the back seat, there’s a clip and harness system that integrates into the car’s seat belt system,” Moody said.

But Subaru goes beyond just having complete accessories, he said.

“It’s part of their corporate culture that even their dealerships partner with local shelters to help with adoption,” Moody said.

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Some of the brands on the list may not offer all of these products, but they are athletic and therefore fit the lifestyle of most dog owners. The Jeep Wrangler and Ford Bronco Sport, for example, don’t have low dog entry, but they do offer rear area soft boxes and other aftermarket accessories for taking Rover off-road, Moody said. .

Autotrader has also reviewed the price so that the list includes a wide range of affordability. The Bronco Sport, for example, is one of the more affordable options starting at $28,815. Kia Soul makes the list because it offers a low load floor and starts at $19,790.

The Tesla Model 3, which starts at $46,990, has “dog mode,” which is a temperature control feature. A driver can leave their pet in the car and the cabin stays cool or warm depending on the appropriate setting. The center console screen displays a message alerting passers-by that the owner knows the pet is in the car and the environment is temperature controlled.

No General Motors cars were on the list and Moody said there was no specific reason for this other than “In doing research, a lot of these particular companies went beyond manufacturer accessories and spare pet accessories.”

There are also no mics on the list. Moody said people ask him about it because they imagine a dog riding in the bed of a pickup truck in the countryside.

“Well, it’s not really the safest for dogs. Dogs can get thrown off the bed of the truck,” Moody said. “Also, jumping up and down to get in and out of the pickup bed is hard on their joints and hips.”

He said that in the past, readers were also surprised to learn that you should strap your dog in the car. Most harnesses, which can be purchased at pet stores, cost $30 to $40 and attach to seat belts.

For more information from Autotrader on the 2022 list of the best cars for dog lovers, including details on the dog-friendly features that helped each model earn a spot on this year’s list, and for for a chance to win a limited edition matching BFF charm set, visit Dogtrader.com.

Contact Jamie L. LaReau at [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter @jlareauan. Learn more about General Engines and subscribe to our automotive newsletter. Become a subscriber.