(PET CARE/PETS) Whether you are taking your pet to the park or to the vet, you need to be able to drive comfortably with them by your side.

Unfortunately, driving with your pet can be unappealing due to the dirt and odor they tend to leave behind. But there are a number of cheap and easy ways in which you can pet-proof your car, and make driving with your pet an enjoyable experience.

Check out these four ways to keep your car clean and odor-free while driving with your furry friends.

Be Prepared

Preparing for your pet to be in the car with you is the first step. Prevent dirt and odors from entering your car by placing easily removable plastic covers on your seats before your pet enters the car. This will not only prevent hair from sticking onto your seats, but it will also prevent unpleasant scents from seeping into the fabrics as well. 

Install Cabin Air Filters

Cabin air filters do a great job of ensuring the air in your vehicle is clean and healthy. They filter out all of the dirty air and debris that may come into your car through the heating and air conditioning systems. Installing cabin air filters will improve the air quality of your vehicle while helping eliminate any residual pet odors.

It’s important to clean and replace these filters as necessary, otherwise they stop working properly. This can become costly over time, so using a washable and reusable cabin air filter is often recommended. These types of filters are not only easy to clean, but will save you money in the long-run.

Install Heavy Duty Floor Mats

Placing heavy duty floor mats in your car is an excellent way to ensure your car stays clean. This makes it easier to clean up any dirt your pet drags into the car, and will prevent any accidents your pet may have from damaging the car’s interior. Just like with cabin air filters, it’s highly suggested to choose a floor mat that’s washable and reusable. Doing so will make it easier to clean any messes in your car, and will end up saving you money down the line.

Keep Necessary Supplies In Your Car

It’s always a great idea to keep various necessary supplies in your car, but it’s even more important to do so if you are traveling with a pet. Lint-rollers, blankets, air fresheners, and odor eliminators are just a few basic, inexpensive supplies that should help keep your car clean and odor-free from all things, including your pet!

Driving with your pet sounds like a great experience to most people, but it can quickly turn in to an unpleasant one if your furry friend has an accident and ruins your car’s interior. It’s inevitable that your pet will be in your car at one point in time, so make sure you’re prepared.

— Amber Kingsley, exclusive to Global Animal

Amber Kingsley is a freelance journalist and member of a pet enthusiast/animal lover group in her city of Santa Monica who has donated countless hours supporting her local shelter within operations and outreach.