Gunner Kennels Large Dog Crate Saves Gus

Story by James Thompson | As Told by Gunner

I was on the road again, this time to Ft. Worth with my black lab and hunting buddy Gus. I’m a junior at TCU and was headed back to school after the holidays (extending the break to fit in as much hunting in as possible) with my co-pilot riding in the G1™ Large kennel. We were traveling down one of Texas’ two-lane county roads – where the speed limit is higher than most states’ 4-lane highways – in my Ford F-150 right after dusk. Pushing 75 mph when we rounded the curve, I found myself playing chicken with a Dodge Dually and an attached 25-foot horse trailer.

the crash
James’ totaled F-150, After The Wreck (submitted by James)


Without time or space to react, I swung the truck into the parallel ditch to avoid a head-on collision. The Ranch Hand bumper took the full impact, actually cracking before bouncing the truck to the other side of the drop-off. Gus and I rolled sideways in the F-150, landing on the passenger side, right where Gus happened to be riding in his large dog crate.

Fortunately I had taken precaution for both me and Gus at the beginning of the trip and was able to crawl out through the truck’s shattered window rattled only with a concussion and some bruises thanks to the seatbelt. Gus was safely locked in his Gunner Kennels, still muddy from a post-hunt transport.


When I broke loose from the vehicle, I went for Gus right away but wasn’t able to extract the kennel: The large dog crate was facing the back seat passenger door in the cab, right where the F-150 landed. If there was ever a time I was thankful for the Gunner investment this was going to be it – I couldn’t see Gus, could only hope that this crash tested product I had trusted in was doing its job.

The drunk driver that ran me off the road never even stopped (he was eventually apprehended about an hour later), so I had to wait alone for the EMT to arrive. When they got there the Gunner crate was pried out of the truck’s mangled metal. Not only did the dog box safely contain Gus – he didn’t break through the door, and it didn’t pop open – but the G1™ also protected him from bodily harm and trauma.


Physically, Gus was fine after the wreck. And 10 minutes afterward, you would’ve thought that he’d just played in the park.

Thankfully he was good to go for the rest of duck season and I’m looking forward to spending more good years watching Gus retrieve – and maintaining our road warrior status in the Gunner large dog crate.

I am forever in y’all’s debt. Gunner Kennels really saved my dog’s life. He wouldn’t be here today if weren’t for y’all.

Read more: Traveling With Dogs: Hook’s Gunner Kennels Survival Story

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