Our four-legged friends are integral parts of our families and our lives. We prefer to take them with us to many outings so they feel like part of the family. But transporting a dog in your nice clean car can be a headache that requires a lot of cleanup. Moreover, those claws can be very damaging to the soft upholstery of your back seat. And what happens if they have an accident?
The best dog car seat covers can protect against all of these problems. Most of them are waterproof, but which ones will actually stay put and not leave your canine companion sliding around the back seat? Do any of them look attractive? And will you be able to access the seat belts when someone needs to ride in the back seat?
Don’t worry, we had the same questions as well, and we set out to answer them. After trying as many covers as we could find, we’ve compiled quite a bit of useful information that we’d like to share with you in the following ten reviews.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
|Pet Union |
|High quality thick material||4.5/5|
The 10 Best Dog Car Seat Covers
1. Active Pets Dog Back Seat Cover – Best Overall
With a universal fit that’s easy to install in the backseat of any car or SUV, this seat cover from Active Pets is a stylish and simple way to protect your vehicle from damage when transporting your dog. It’s thick and durable with a top layer made from 600D Oxford waterproof cotton. This helps it prevent punctures and scratches caused by nails or teeth, but it also makes sure that if your pet has an accident your vehicle won’t be ruined. The middle layer is also waterproof, so there’s little chance of any leak-through occurring.
We found this seat cover to be very easy to clean and it only took a minute. It can be easily wiped up to clean any wet messes, and any hair or dirt can be vacuumed off. One of the things that impressed us most was how little this cover moves. Some of the other products we tested slid all around the backseat, but the Active Pets seat cover stayed put. We think it looks attractive and doesn’t negatively impact the interior of your vehicle. It’s also protected by a three-year money-back guarantee, so you can rest assured that it will protect your seats.
2. Pet Union Car Seat Cover – Best Value
With four distinct layers of protection, this luxury car seat cover frosam Pet Union is an affordable way to completely protect your back seat from the damage that a pet can cause. The top layer is 600D Oxford cotton. It’s durable enough to prevent claws from piercing it, but it’s also waterproof, in case your dog has an accident. Then there is a soft cotton layer that provides comfort for your canine companion since they’re likely to be spending quite a bit of time on this cover. A layer of waterproof PVC is next. This layer is the final protection that stops any wetness from seeping through the pad and into the seat below. The bottom layer is an anti-slip rubber backing that does an excellent job of stopping this seat cover from sliding around while you drive.
Our only complaint about the Pet Union car seat cover is that it’s not the most attractive. But we’re purchasing this to keep our back seats safe, not to improve our interior. It’s already affordable, and once you factor in the lifetime replacement guarantee, it’s easy to see why we think it’s the best dog car seat cover for the money.
Heavy-duty protection for your back seat meets luxurious comfort for your dog. The 4Knines dog seat cover is an excellent product with some noticeable benefits that set it apart from the competition. For instance, while many of the similar products are made from 600D Oxford cotton, the 4Knines cover takes it a step further by using 600D polyester instead. Polyester is stronger and more durable than cotton, and it’s also much less absorbent. The superior materials used to build this cover are more expensive though, which is why this cover costs more than many of the others that we tested for this list. But it is protected by a lifetime warranty, so it’s a long-term investment.
Aside from the waterproof polyester on the top, this cover includes another solid waterproof layer to make sure that there’s no chance of any messes leaking through and ruining your seats. This cover is much easier to clean thanks to the polyester top. Any mess easily wipes off with almost no effort. Compared to other models, this one also stays put really well and wasn’t shifting around beneath our furry friends.
4. Epica Pet Car Seat Cover
You want to protect your seat, but it’s also important to keep your pet comfortable. To that end, the Epica pet car seat cover has a quilted top that’s thick enough to help protect against claws and teeth but is also comfortable enough for your dog to enjoy. Unfortunately, this one doesn’t stay put very well. There are no headrest anchors on the front, so it’s just not as secure as other designs were.
This cover has a waterproof layer in case your dog pees. It’s also easy to wipe off and doesn’t hold on to moisture. Layers of polyester were also added for improved durability, ensuring that no nails make it through the softer quilted top and into your seat cushions. This is one of the more cost-effective covers, but we didn’t think it performed as well as the three that we ranked ahead of it. If the cover hadn’t slipped around so much the story might be different.
5. VIEWPETS Bench Car Seat Cover
The VIEWPETS Bench car seat cover had some benefits that we were glad to see, but several flaws also kept it from climbing up our list. We did appreciate the Velcro-covered cutouts that allow you to pull the seatbelts and buckles through for use. This means you don’t have to remove the car seat cover every time someone needs to sit in the backseat. However, there is no cutout in the middle, so you’ll only have access to the buckles on the sides. If you need all three back seats, you’ll still have to remove the cover.
This cover is nice and thick, adding plenty of protection to your seats. Nails and teeth are unlikely to pierce this cover to damage your seats. The top material is waterproof and very easy to clean. A simple wipe down with a wet rag is all you need. The non-slip mesh on the bottom surprisingly kept this cover from migrating while driving. Most of the other covers turned into a slip-n-slide without front headrest anchors, but the VIEWPETS cover wraps underneath the front edge of the seat to hold it secure.
6. iBuddy Dog Car Seat Covers
When a product is more expensive than its most similar competitors, we always look to see what sets it apart to warrant the higher price. The iBuddy dog car seat cover is one of the more expensive covers that we tested, and it does have a few features that we were glad to see. For instance, long side flaps can be strapped to the above door handle to protect your door panels from scratches by your dog’s nails. Also, a mesh window at the front allows you to see your dog and provides superior ventilation for them.
In the end, this cover was ultimately held back by poor build quality that left it falling apart after just a few uses. The straps that hold this cover in place by looping around the headrests are just too weak. The second time we used the iBuddy cover one of the straps broke. This started a chain event and we had several more break shortly after. Next, we noticed that the seams were unraveling, allowing the layers to start to pull apart. Worst, it left our light-colored upholstery stained black and ruined.
7. BarksBar Pet Car Seat Cover
We found several things to like about the BarksBar Pet car seat cover, but unfortunately, we found just as many disappointing issues. It’s priced quite affordably, the first positive. You can easily convert it for bench seats or use it hammock-style by wrapping the straps around the headrests of the front seats. This is where we discovered the first drawback. The straps that hold this cover in place are brittle and weak. When we went to adjust them, one of them broke the very first time.
We experienced other issues with the straps that didn’t break. They’re adjustable so you can tighten them and hold the cover in place, but we noticed that they would get completely loose through a car ride and allow the entire cover to start slipping and sliding. The non-slid backing didn’t seem to do much to mitigate the issue either. It is available in an XL size for larger vehicles, but we expect the same problems with either size.
8. URPOWER Waterproof Pet Seat Cover
Affordable and waterproof, the URPOWER waterproof pet seat cover is effective at protecting your seats, but it’s not the most comfortable for your dog. That said, it does have a few redeeming qualities, such as the built-in carrying pockets that snap closed. We were also pleased to see the Velcro openings that allow the seatbelt buckles through so you don’t have to remove the cover for someone to sit in the back seat. But in spite of these positive traits, this cover was a disappointment overall.
The nylon straps that hold this cover in place seem to have the same problem that several other similar products exhibited. The straps are brittle and broke off far too easily while trying to adjust them. We like the waterproof surface of the URPOWER cover, but this one seems slicker than the other ones we tested. Our dogs were sliding around on the top of this cover, and it didn’t seem to make for a very enjoyable car ride for our furry friends. Our final complaint is that the side flaps don’t reach high enough to cover over the door panels.
9. Gorilla Slip-Resistant Dog Car Seat Cover
As one of the most affordable dog car seat covers that we’ve seen, we weren’t sure what to expect from the Gorilla Grip. The first thing we noticed, is that it’s very thin. There aren’t as many layers in this cover as the other covers we tested. That said, it did still seem to do a good job of protecting the seat because we didn’t experience any punctures or tears through this cover. You will need rear headrests to get a proper fit though. Without them, there’s no way to really secure this seat cover.
To keep your vehicle usable, the Gorilla Grip seat cover has a zipper that lets you zip half of it up to free up half of your car’s back seat. We like the idea of this feature, but the zipper broke the first time we tried to use it. Once this happened, the cover was no longer any good. While it worked, it kept still in the back seat, which is more than we can say for some products. However, the longevity is too poor to recommend, and there are too many vehicles that will cause disappointment when this cover doesn’t fit.
10. Babyltrl Dog Car Seat Cover
The Babyltrl dog car seat cover is an attractive cover that doesn’t offer quite as much protection as competing products do. That said, it has some other benefits such as being middle seatbelt compatible, which few other covers are. However, it’s very difficult to use the seatbelts with this cover on. So much so that it almost negates the benefit of even having seatbelt holes. The red stitching on the black cover looks nice, making this one of the more attractive options in our opinion. But that’s where the positives end. Once we installed this cover, we started to see the design flaws becoming evident.
First, this cover doesn’t wrap around the bottom of the seat. It’s also not convertible, so you can’t use it hammock-style with the front straps wrapped around the front seat headrests. The result is that this cover can freely slip around the seat and even flap in the wind. The back straps wrap around the rear headrests, but they won’t work with molded headrests. Only standard pop-up type headrests will work with these straps, so many vehicles simply won’t be compatible.
At this point, you have enough information to make an informed purchasing decision. You could take our recommendations at face value and make your selection based on that. Or, you could read this short buyer’s guide and figure out which traits we prioritized that caused those covers to rank favorably. Once you know what features to keep in mind, it should make the decision much easier for you.
It’s no secret, dogs tear things up. If you’ve ever given your pup a new chew toy, it probably wasn’t too long before it was destroyed. Even when not chewing, they have sharp claws that can easily puncture soft fabrics. Your car seat cover needs to be thick and durable enough to prevent their claws from making it through to the seat below. Some of the better-quality covers we tested had a top layer made from 600D Oxford cotton which is waterproof and durable. This is great, but some even took it a step further by using 600D polyester instead, which is even tougher and less absorbent.
The main portion of the cover that your dog sits on isn’t the only part that needs to be durable though. Several straps hold each cover in place, and if they break, then the seat cover loses its function. We experienced this with quite a few of these covers, so it’s definitely something to keep an eye out for.
Access to Seatbelts
The back seat is for passengers. When you have a dog car seat cover installed, then the dog is your most likely passenger. But when someone else needs to sit back there, it can be a pain to have to completely remove the seat cover. Luckily, many of these products include Velcro openings that the seatbelt buckles can protrude through so your passengers can buckle up. Other products included a zipper that made it possible to zip half the cover up, freeing up half the back seat for passengers.
Most of these covers claim to be a universal fit, but in our testing, this wasn’t usually the case. For some types of covers, you’ll need rear headrests. If you don’t have them, then there’s nothing for the straps to hold onto. For others, you’ll need front seat headrests. Some of the covers were convertible and could be used with or without front headrests, which makes for better compatibility but is also a less secure way of installing it.
Your car seat cover is going to see a lot of paws and claws, so it’s good to make sure that your investment is protected. Even if it’s sufficiently durable, it’s going to take a lot of damage over the years. A good warranty shows that the company stands behind their product and believe in it. It also protects your investment. A few of the covers we tested had no warranty at all or very short warranties of one-year or less. However, a handful of these products offered lifetime replacement guarantees. If anything goes wrong with your cover, they’ll replace it for free. We think this is a great feature that’s valuable enough to make one cover preferable to another on its own.
It may seem like a simple decision, but the dog car seat cover you choose can either be a point of frustration or convenience and comfort for you and your furry friend. We want our pups to be happy and safe, but we also want to protect our expensive interior. Our reviews should have helped you narrow the field down, but we’re going to quickly recap our top recommendations so they’re fresh in your mind. Our top pick was the seat cover from Active Pets. It’s made from waterproof and durable 600D Oxford cotton, doesn’t slip around your back seat, and is even protected by a three-year money-back guarantee.
For the best value, we suggest checking out the Pet Union Luxury car seat cover. The thick materials used in its construction protect your seats from damage and moisture, it’s covered by a lifetime replacement guarantee, and it’s priced very affordably. Finally, for a premium offering, the 4Knines dog seat cover is a high-quality but expensive offering. It’s made from more durable 600D polyester, cleans off very easily with a wipe down, and has a lifetime warranty to protect your investment.
Featured image credit: BarksBar Luxury Pet Car Seat Cover with Seat Anchors for Cars, Amazon
Emily started this blog out of pure passion. She LOVES her 3 dogs; Chew Barka, Cooper & Nelson, and spends countless hours every day playing with them.
When she’s not nerding out on dogs, you’ll find her on a snowboard or in the kitchen baking chocolate brownies.
She’s been featured in PetAware, Dogtime, and ModernDog.
- A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites
- The 10 Best Dog Car Seat Covers
- 1. Active Pets Dog Back Seat Cover – Best Overall
- 2. Pet Union Car Seat Cover – Best Value
- 3. 4Knines Dog Seat Cover – Premium Choice
- 4. Epica Pet Car Seat Cover
- 5. VIEWPETS Bench Car Seat Cover
- 6. iBuddy Dog Car Seat Covers
- 7. BarksBar Pet Car Seat Cover
- 8. URPOWER Waterproof Pet Seat Cover
- 9. Gorilla Slip-Resistant Dog Car Seat Cover
- 10. Babyltrl Dog Car Seat Cover
- Buyer’s Guide
- Access to Seatbelts
- Vehicle Compatibility