We spend a lot of time and money making sure our children are safe and secure when travelling in our cars. We look at the ratings of car seats, watch safety videos and ensure they are fitted correctly into our cars.
However when we take our other babies on our travels are we always as careful about their security and safety? These babies are our fur babies and actually should be treated in a similar way to our children.
You’ve probably seen on a few occasions parents who have their children in their cars jumping around the seats and not strapped in, I see it occasionally on the school run and it makes me so mad that they could do that; but what about when there is a dog in the car jumping around or hanging its head out of the window? It seems different doesn’t it?
I wonder how many of you know that by law dogs have to be restrained when within your car? That can be with a seatbelt, a crate, a pet carrier or a pet guard.
If you didn’t know that then you certainly weren’t alone, according to current research by Confused.com over 75% of motorists who own pets are unaware that driving with an unrestrained pet could potentially lead to offences punishable by fines of up to £2,500.
“It’s important to restrain dogs in the car both for their own safety and that of everyone else,” says Runa Hanaghan, deputy veterinary director of The Dogs Trust, the UK’s largest dog-welfare charity. If you were to have an accident then pets can be thrown forward and be injured and also injure other passengers in the process.
We used to take Barney out in the car often when he was younger, however now he is almost 14 years old he struggles to get up into the car and needs to be lifted in. He goes into the boot where we make a bed for him and he is restricted from entering the back seats due to the parcel shelf which rolls back towards the back seats and a pet guard, he likes being in the car when he is there and goes to sleep. We always make sure he has water to drink and we stop frequently if on a long journey so he can stretch his legs and go to the toilet – just like we would for the children.
Confused.com surveyed 2000 pet owners and found out that:
- 1 in 10 (10%) drivers have had an accident or near miss caused by driving with a pet in the car, or know someone who has
- Over half (53%) of drivers say they take their pet in the car with them at least once a week
- Two thirds (63%) of drivers with pets don’t know that letting their pet loose in the car may affect their insurance if an accident occurs
If you travel with your pet then you can check out these helpful tips for keeping your dog safe in your car.