Best electric cars for dogs 2023
If you follow us on Instagram, you’ll know that here at elmo we love our dogs! That’s my dog Roo, a Cocker Spaniel who has featured in many an elmo photoshoot, lured into modelling with several tennis balls and treats at hand.
It’s important that the car I drive is fit for all the family, including Roo. So, I thought I’d investigate some of the best electric cars for dogs – as surely it’s also a consideration for the other 10 million dog owners here in the UK!
First, let’s look at some of the top requirements from a dog owner’s perspective:
Decent boot space
Whether you’re taking your pooch on a quick walk at the local park, or further afield for a weekend away, a decent boot space is probably the number one consideration for dog owners. I previously owned a Fiat 500, with a tiny boot! This meant poor Roo was either cramped in the back, or enjoyed riding shotgun (to my partner’s dismay).
Having car seats that are easily washable is definitely a bonus. Muddy walks or pups that aren’t quite potty trained can lead to stained seats – not ideal if you’re looking to sell your car afterward.
Like most dog owners, we need space for all our dog-walking paraphernalia. Leads, water bowls, and poo bags galore – if your electric car has additional storage space then that’s a great plus!
Not so relevant for Roo (luckily), but some dogs do get car sick. So, cars that are smoother to drive may help settle any upset stomachs. This is one of the greatest bonuses about getting an EV as a dog owner – as they are super quiet and smooth to drive.
Now let’s look at my list of top electric cars for dogs (& their parents!), also rated by Roo who’s given all of these cars her seal of approval.
1. Tesla Model 3
If your pup likes the finer things in life (don’t they all?!), then the Tesla Model 3 is a great choice. Spacious interiors and a smooth ride makes this a great car for dogs – just watch those leather seats! There’s plenty of storage space for leads, towels & toys and there’s even a ‘frunk’ for storing additional gear.
Plus, it’s specifically got a ‘Dog Mode’. Confused? So were we! Dog Mode allows you to set the temperature inside the car if you need to leave your dog for a short period of time. It displays a handy message on the infotainment screen, to let any concerned pedestrians know that your dog is safe and you will be returning soon.
The main downside of this car is its hefty price tag. The Tesla Model 3 isn’t a cheap car to buy outright. However, if you want a more affordable option, a Tesla Model 3 on subscription could be a great alternative.
Roo’s Rating: 🎾🎾🎾🎾/🎾
Source: Tesla Twitter @tesla
The MG5 was the world’s first electric estate car and with an abundance of boot space (at 578 litres) – it’s perfect for pooch parents. As well as plenty of space for dogs in all shapes and sizes it also has one of the lowest load lips on the electric car market – meaning that even little dogs can easily jump into the boot. Plus, with the MG5 it’s really easy to install a dog guard, so they can’t jump into the back seats and distract you from driving.
The MG5 is also a smooth drive, with great suspension and excellent handling so shouldn’t be too bumpy for your furry friends. Plus, one special feature of the MG is that it comes with vehicle-to-load. That means you can plug in and use the cars battery to power other items such as a hoover to clear up any mess on the go.
Roo’s Rating: 🎾🎾🎾🎾/🎾
3. Peugeot e-2008 GT Premium
You may have noticed Roo modelling for the Peugeot e-2008 – and that’s because it’s a great option for dog parents. SUV styling means there’s enough room for your dog in the backseat secured with a dog seat or harness. The boot isn’t huge, but if you remove the boot cover, there’s enough room for one small or medium sized dog to travel safely.
The e-2008 doesn’t have any fancy dog settings, but it’s an affordable no-frills options for dog owners. Plus, Peugeot’s all black interiors means that stains are less noticeable!
Roo’s Rating 🎾🎾/🎾🎾🎾
4. Polestar 2
A firm favourite with elmo pup Peanut, the Polestar 2 is another great electric car for dogs. Spacious, uncomplicated interiors mean plenty of room for dogs in beds, attached via lead, or comfortably sat in the boot. It’s just a touch smaller than the Tesla Model 3 at 405 litres, but it still does the job. One unique feature of the Polestar is that it’s got a remote boot opening. So if you’re carrying lots of stuff to the car, including your dog, you can simply kick your foot under the car and it will seamlessly open for you. A nice little extra touch we think.
The seat material varies depending on which Pack you choose, but in the Plus Pack (pictured below) the textile upholstery is very forgiving for dog hairs and accidents (Peanut can vouch for that!).
Roo’s Rating: 🎾🎾🎾🎾/🎾
5. Rivian R1S
You may not have heard of the brand Rivian, but you soon will, as it’s coming to the UK in 2023! This car is really big. It feels more like a truck than a car. But that’s great news for dogs! There’s plenty of space for all the family and several dogs if you need it.
Plus, like Tesla, Rivian have included a Pet Comfort Mode – apparently it was highly requested by their customers over in the US. Like Tesla’s Dog Mode, it regulates the internal temperature so that it’s comfortable for your pets. Unlike petrol or diesel cars, electric cars have the ability to use their battery to power temperature for example, whilst the car is switched off. And don’t worry, if your battery drops to a certain level – the car can notify you to come back to alleviate your pet.
Roo’s Rating: 🎾🎾🎾/🎾🎾
So there you have it!
Mine and Roo’s top electric cars for dogs and their owners. Choosing an electric car is never an easy task, with so many makes and models available. But for dog owners, it’s important not only consider range or charging speed, but also where your dog will travel in your new car – so they are comfortable and can’t distract you from driving. The great news is, there are plenty of great electric cars suitable for dogs – so you can take them along on all your adventures too!
Whilst you’re here, we’ve listed some FAQs when driving with pets in your car…
Can I transport a dog in a car?
Yes of course, but the Highway Code does state that pets must be sufficiently restrained so they do not distract or injure the driver or passengers. That’s why it’s highly recommended to use a dog crate, or safely travel with them in the boot of the car.
How much space does my dog need in a car?
According to the RSPCA, your dog or other pets should have enough space to sit and stand up at full height, turn easily and lie down in a natural position.
Can I leave my dog in the car unattended?
Yes, but it’s only recommended for short periods of time. Cars heat up really quickly when the doors and windows are closed, so always leave a window ajar for fresh air. We’d recommend avoiding it entirely during the summer months.