The same is true for pets riding in a car in over 50% of the states. You can be fined for not having your pet in some type of restraint system while riding in the family car. According to a recent study by the American Automobile Association (AAA) something like 30,000 accidents a year are caused by dogs in the front seats.
In fact, California Assemblyman Bill Maze (R-Visalia) introduced a bill against driving with lap dogs after a car passed him with two large canines hanging out a window and a third in the driver’s lap.
There are 69.1 million U.S. households with pets and 84% of families
travel with a pet in their automobile, according to the American Pet Product Association. Under Maze's bill, drivers
caught with a pet in their lap would face fines ranging from $35 to
nearly $150. Other states are following suit and are introducing additional "distracted driver" legislation which will include pets.
Legislation aside, there are many important reasons that Muttropolis believes you need to secure your pet with a pet safety harness or car seat when you hit the road with Rover. Here are the top six:
Reason Number 1: The primary reason is the safety of your pet in case of an accident or even a sudden stop. In an auto accident a pet in a car traveling 30 mph will hit an object ten inches in front of them such as the windshield at 1,200 pounds per square inch. If you have ever slammed on your brakes and had your dog come flying forward, you understand how easily your pet can be injured or even killed
Reason Number 2: Having your pet in a safety harness can prevent driver distraction. A pet that is moving about in the car is the 3rd worst in-car distraction according to a recent AAA study
Reason Number 3: In an accident, a dog can be thrown with hundreds or even thousands of pounds of force into other occupants of the vehicle, easily causing life-threatening injuries. A good pet safety harness system will help minimize this danger.
Reason Number 4: A pet safety harness makes it easier for rescue workers and EMT's to help in the event of an accident. A dog that has been in an accident is likely to be shocked, confused, injured, and protective. It does not understand what has happened and may attack people or rescue workers indiscriminately.
Reason Number 5: A pet safety harness can prevent runaways! Even well behaved dogs can have their moments of "distraction". Far from home or on vacation is the worst place to lose your dog. Dogs can also get injured or killed jumping from even a slow moving vehicle.
Reason Number 6: Convenience. A pet safety harness eliminates the worry of your pet escaping every time a window or door is opened! This also means you may be able to leave some windows open for ventilation.
It only takes a few minutes to insure your pet's safety by buckling them in a harness or a car seat. Accidents do happen, and you owe it to your pet to protect them against possible injury. Your family will thank you, and so will your pet.
Some factoids in the story were printed with permission of Pettravel.com