PDSA's Care Advice

The ideal environment for your puppy or dog

To create the ideal dog environment it is important to provide them with their own dog bed where they can rest undisturbed. Poisonous or hazardous items in the home or garden should be kept safely out of reach. When it comes to dog travel via vehicle, safety is important, and dogs should ideally travel on the back seat with a seatbelt or secured behind a dog guard. It is also vital that all dogs get the opportunity to exercise on a daily basis.

A suitable dog bed

A comfortable dog bed

A cosy bed is important for dogs. This should be kept in a quiet, dry, draught-free area. Make sure you choose one that can be cleaned easily and thoroughly, and do this regularly.

Cleaning up after your dog

Part of providing a suitable dog environment is ensuring it's clean and hygienic. Dog faeces can transmit diseases, as well as parasites such as worms. Make sure you clean up after your dog using a plastic bag or ’pooper scooper‘, especially if there are children around. Dog owners and people responsible for dogs have a legal obligation to do this when in a public place, under the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005.

PDSA's Findings

PDSA has produced the first ever comprehensive measure of animal wellbeing in the UK, revealing the state of our pet nation - The PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report

Over 11,000 pet owners were surveyed to find out how dogs, cats and rabbits are cared for, below are the findings for dogs and their living environment.


When it comes to the sleeping arrangements for dogs, owners score well in our PAW report. However, dog travel safety is not as well catered for and many owners are risking the safety of themselves, their pet and other road users by not securing their dog safely when travelling with their companion.

Improve one thing today ... make sure your dog is safely restrained every time you travel

How dogs travel in cars

Key findings

BELT UP – Travel safety concerns as dogs roam free in the car.

  • When it comes to a dog’s safe travel, the responses are not as positive. 19% of owners state that their dog travels on the back seat without a seat belt and 18% that their dog is in the boot without a dog guard.
  • 62% of dog owners ensure their dog sleeps in its own pet bed, but 17% of owners allow their dog to sleep either on their bed or on that of a family member.
  • When it comes to exercise, results indicate that dog owners are good at keeping their pets fairly active. 75% of dogs get taken for a walk at least once a day and 87% play in the garden daily. A further 69% play with toys daily. 58% of dog owner’s state that three or more exercise activities as well as walking is available to their dog every day – whether this is play in the garden, playing with toys, agility training or swimming.

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