According to NRSPP, one in three dog owners don’t restrain their dogs properly before heading out for a drive. This can lead to increased risk on the road with increased movement in the car and the potential for blocked visibility of windows and mirrors.
Some dogs don’t travel well in vehicles, leading to anxiety and stress. This may cause them to cry, climb around the car or try to jump out of the window. This not only causes distress to the dog but also for the driver as concentration shifts from the road to focusing on what is happening inside of the car.
In the event of an accident, dogs can be thrown around the car, increasing the likelihood of injuring to themselves and everyone else in the car. According to Allianz, If a car crashes at a speed of 40km/h, a dog can develop projection forces equaling 40 times its weight. This not only affects the dog’s chances of survival but can cause extreme damage to the inside of the car, to passengers and the driver.
So how can we keep our pets safe in the car? Small dogs can be secured in crates, carry boxes or a backseat hammock. Larger dogs can be secured through harness seatbelts or in an open-air boot. Before you set off on your drive, make sure all accessible windows are closed and ensure any barriers are set up so that your dog isn’t able to move through different sections of the car during the drive.
By restraining your dog properly in the car, you are minimising risk for yourself, your dog, your passengers as well as other drivers on the road. To learn more about our other low-risk driving recommendations, click here.