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Old 03-25-2013, 11:08 AM
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CaliTerp07 CaliTerp07 is offline
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Default Dog friendly vehicles

Okay, so I know we've had threads like this before but I failed at the search function and anyway, it's 2013 so maybe there are new cars available?

The criteria:
  • Under $20k (or very close to it) out the door
  • Room for two medium sized dog crates and trial gear (ez up, bags, etc)
  • Way to comfortably crate out of the car with good circulation. Lucy's not able to be inside the building during trials, and there is not good enough air flow in a regular sedan. Although her crate fits in the back seat of my civic, it's not ideal. I want to be able to lift the back and drape shade cloth.
  • Sun roof and heated seats (okay, not necessity, but would really, really like)
  • Used is fine if it's 2-3 years and has less than 40k miles on it

Top contenders are the new Ford Escape (completely flat folding rear seats in the 2013 model!!) and the mazda CX-5 (would end up being over budget though). I think in either case to get what I want in those models I'd need to wait a year or more for used versions.

I haven't tried squishing crates into a used CR-V yet. That's on my to-do list. Any other models I should try? The Nissan Rogue was too small in the back. I don't like the square boxiness of a lot of the proposed "dog cars", despite them fitting crates better.

Are there regular cars that magically have extra space? A hatchback that is still cute?

What do you have that you love for dog trials?
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Old 03-25-2013, 11:12 AM
release the hounds release the hounds is offline
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Not very glamorous, but a Chrysler T&C with middle and back sto and go seats and tinted windows. I really like the Honda, but my crates don't fit as well with all my equipment.

I park in full sun all the time, and open the hatch or windows facing away from the sun and it stays as comfortable as any other shade you'll find.

The smaller vehicles like a CRV won't fit my crates for bigger dogs.
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Old 03-25-2013, 11:15 AM
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frostfell frostfell is offline
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this thread is relevant to my interests

what about a used scion xd?
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Old 03-25-2013, 11:15 AM
stardogs stardogs is offline
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What do you consider a medium crate? A 30" or 36" long? That will make a huuuge difference on what vehicles might fit. Also, do you need to be able to carry more than one adult human passenger with crates installed?

In the meantime, check out the blog I write, Four Paw Drive (www.4pdrive.wordpress.com), for some vehicle reviews to get you started.
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Old 03-25-2013, 11:36 AM
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I love my 2010 Jeep Patriot. Totally affordable, not terribly huge, drives like a car but feels more like an SUV. The seats in the back fold all the way down (you can either do all of them, or just two of them). I'm not exactly sure how big of crates you're talking, but with the seats down, it could fit two. With the backseat up, I'd think it'd probably only fit one medium sized crate in the back.

But I really love it. I have fabric seats, and if I had a choice, I would've opted for leather -- easier to clean and such with dogs. But I've got the sunroof as well.


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Old 03-25-2013, 11:39 AM
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CaliTerp07 CaliTerp07 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by release the hounds View Post
Not very glamorous, but a Chrysler T&C with middle and back sto and go seats and tinted windows. I really like the Honda, but my crates don't fit as well with all my equipment.

I park in full sun all the time, and open the hatch or windows facing away from the sun and it stays as comfortable as any other shade you'll find.

The smaller vehicles like a CRV won't fit my crates for bigger dogs.
Noooooooo minivan! It is a stretch to even get me in an SUV or crossover. I have driven sports cars my entire adult life (currently driving an eclipse!) so I need a gradual transition into boring car life.

Luckily I have a little dog, and my co-traveler has two teeny dogs who share a medium crate.

Quote:
Originally Posted by frostfell View Post
this thread is relevant to my interests

what about a used scion xd?
People must either love their xd's and keep them forever, or no one must have ever bought them. There are only 10 used ones within 50 miles of my house! Thanks for the tip though, I will add them to the research list.

Quote:
Originally Posted by stardogs View Post
What do you consider a medium crate? A 30" or 36" long? That will make a huuuge difference on what vehicles might fit. Also, do you need to be able to carry more than one adult human passenger with crates installed?

In the meantime, check out the blog I write, Four Paw Drive (www.4pdrive.wordpress.com), for some vehicle reviews to get you started.
30", yes. It fit sideways in the back of all the crossovers, but very few of them fit the crate lengthwise. If I turn it sideways I can't fit both crates due to wheel wells on most vehicles. I can always put them in the backseat, but then there's no difference compared to a regular car, imo. Hence the excitement for truly fold flat seats.
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Old 03-25-2013, 11:42 AM
release the hounds release the hounds is offline
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pffffft. quit your whining I went from a 1967 mustang convertible to a minivan and survived. I did buy it purely for the dogs and I do still have the mustang, though it's in storage.
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Old 03-25-2013, 11:45 AM
SizzleDog SizzleDog is offline
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Used Honda Element!

I have a 2007, and I can fit three dobe-sized crates PLUS show/trial gear into it.
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Old 03-25-2013, 11:55 AM
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I can fit two medium(smaller) crates in my Prius. We're buying another truck as a dog and camping vehicle though. We considered a van but we want off roading ability. Really, the best choice we found was a van but I feel your pain. lol

As it is my Prius really is a trooper and if I did custom crates or had smaller dogs it would be plenty. I traded in my previous truck for this due to mpg an it's saved me a ton in cash. It's time to go back for the longer events, potential of a third sporting dog, and camping but for just one or even two smaller dogs I would stick with the Prius long term, it's deceptively convenient.
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Old 03-25-2013, 11:55 AM
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CaliTerp07 CaliTerp07 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by release the hounds View Post
pffffft. quit your whining I went from a 1967 mustang convertible to a minivan and survived. I did buy it purely for the dogs and I do still have the mustang, though it's in storage.
One of the benefits of never wanting children is never having to drive a minivan Guess I will have to add "never wanting large dogs" to the list!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SizzleDog View Post
Used Honda Element!
Too boxy for my tastes. I realize that my wish list conflicts (good crate space vs. rounded edges), but it is what it is. I have heard good dog things about it though--that's the hose it out car, isn't it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by JacksonsMom View Post
But I really love it. I have fabric seats, and if I had a choice, I would've opted for leather -- easier to clean and such with dogs. But I've got the sunroof as well.
I've had the same "leather would be so easy" thought...bonus that if I pay the premium for heated seats, it's almost always leather.

----

This is what I mean by the awesomeness of the Escape's back:



Totally, completely flat. Why can't all manufacturers adopt this wonderfulness?
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