• Home  / 
  • Need to Know
  •  /  DIY Dog Car Seats – Safe Dogs At A Fraction of The Cost

DIY Dog Car Seats – Safe Dogs At A Fraction of The Cost

Your family is protected by seat belts, air bags, and baby seats when you drive somewhere, but what about your dog? Does he sit in the back seat with nothing to restrain him in case of an accident?

Ensure your dog’s safety by making a DIY dog car seat. Buying a dog car seat or booster can cost as much as $100, and not all store-bought dog car seats are made from quality materials.

You can also use a dog harness to keep your dog safe in the car. Harnesses may be uncomfortable for the dog if they are too tight (although they will protect your dog in case of a crash.) A dog car seat allows your pooch to move around and you can tailor make a car seat to fit your dog’s size and personality.

For ultimate safety, you can use a harness together with a dog car seat.

There are several tips and a few tutorials on the web on how to make a dog car seat. Check out the following information to find the best way to make a DIY dog car seat for your pet.

How to Make a Dog Car Seat

Here are a few of our favorite DIY dog car seat ideas we’ve compiled from around the internet! Most can be built for under $20!

Lightweight Small Dog Seat by Land To House (only $14!)


To make a dog car seat for a small dog (six to ten pounds) you’ll need the following materials:

  • Old fabric
  • Blanket
  • Cookie pan
  • Velcro
  • Five feet of half inch pipe
  • Backpack straps
  • Four half-inch elbows

Cut the fabric into a cross pattern. Put the cookie pan and top of the fabric and fold the fabric over the pan. Take the fabric out and sew the pieces together. Leave a side open so you can put the pipe underneath the fabric.

Measure the cookie pan and cut four equal pieces of pipe. Connect them with the elbows and secure with PVC glue. The pipes will be used for the top of the car seat.

Sew Velcro strips onto the fabric bag. Attach the backpack straps to the back and front of the dog seat. One strap goes around your car headrest and the other around the back of the car. Put a clip on your dog’s harness to hold him in the seat.

Fit the pipe into the fabric. Then drop the cookie pan into the fabric bottom. See the video tutorial for this dog car seat to learn more.

Puppy Car Seat by Adam Savage! (requires sewing skills)


Make a combination dog bed/seat that you can attach to your back seat. A dog bed makes your dog more comfortable and prevents him from moving around or damaging the seat.

You need two cushions or pillows, and enough material to cover them. Use durable canvas material if you have a bigger dog. You can attach the dog beds to the seat with Velcro.

The Stylish Square Hamper Seat for Small and Medium Sized Dogs

Make a DIY dog car seat for small or medium-sized dogs using a square clothes hamper. Gather the following materials:

  • Clothes hamper
  • Fleece blanket
  • Two throw pillows
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors
  • Leash

Cut the blanket or fabric, so it covers the outside and inside of the hamper. Glue the inside of the hamper. Wrap the fabric or blanket around it.

Cut out two holes in the back of the hamper so you can feed the seat belt through them. Cover the two throw pillows with fabric and place in the hamper.

The Easy Dog Car Seat by Bellas Crafty Mom

Here’s another dog seat/basket idea for small dogs. Buy a basket large enough to fit your pup. Put foam underneath it and secure it to the basket with 77 spray. Put a layer of foam in the basket to add height and allow your dog to look out the window.

Get some fabric you like, and fold it, so it fits tightly around the bottom of the basket. Sew it horizontally and vertically.

Pull the pieces to make a triangle on both sides. Turn the pieces right side out, so they form squared off edges to go around the foam. Pull the fabric over the foam and the sides. Tuck the fabric down between the foam and the sides. Put fleece over the foam and tuck it down.

Put some cushions or a small dog bed in the basket. You now have a comfortable dog car seat to keep your pup occupied – and in one place – for a long drive.

Cheap and Safe Dog Seat by Instructables! (Only $12)

Here’s another variation on the cheap, safe dog car seat. Use these materials:

  • Stacking basket
  • Small tote
  • Shelf grip liner
  • Rope or bungee cord for adjustable shoulder strap
  • Tape measure
  • Belay hooks
  • Rope tied in loop with key chain ring
  • Drill

Measure the area of your car seat where you want to keep the dog seat. Measure the top of the tote (without the lid). The tote and car seat area measurements should be close or exact.

Drill two holes on one side of the basket. Fix the belay clip in the holes on both sides.

Take a pillow or cushion and cover it with blanket or fabric and put it in the basket. The cushioning will keep your pet comfortable during the ride.

Take the rope or shoulder strap and insert it into the belay clips. Place the strap behind the headrests.

On the opposite side of the belay clips, put a belay clip in the middle. This clip will keep your pet secure and act like a dog seat belt.

Finish up by placing the upside down tote on your car seat. Put the shelf rip liner on the tote so it will stay in place.

Put the car seat on top of the tote and loop the strap around the back of the car seat.

Using this method to make a DIY dog car seat will take longer, but it keeps your dog more secure while allowing him to look out the car window.

Small Dog Booster Seat by Erin Puppy at DogForum.com!

Use plastic drawers, duct tape, and bag straps to make a dog car booster seat. Cover with the fabric of your choice and put a pillow or cushion inside the drawer.

The bag strap attaches to the dog’s harness. Never secure your dog in the car with a collar; always use a harness. Your dog may break its neck if there’s an accident.

You’re Ready to Get Started!

We hope you found one or more of these tutorials helpful. When you learn how to make a dog car seat, you can customize the measurements, fabric, and height to your pooch. A homemade dog seat for the car keeps your dog safer and happier during trips and outings.

Free Dog Training Videos

Discover The Quick And Easy Way To An Obedient Dog WITHOUT Spending Hours Of Training & Thousands Of Dollars! This FREE video series will reveal the method that has your dog CHOOSING to obey you, every time!