Byron Carlson Petri & Kalb, LLC | attorneys at law

Safety tips for driving with a pet

On Behalf of | Sep 26, 2023 | Car Accidents, Personal Injury

Leaving a pet at home, even just to run errands or go on a vacation, is difficult for many pet owners. In addition, dogs are always happy to tag along and experience a change of scenery. Even though taking the dog for a ride is a fun way to spend time together, it’s crucial to put safety first. An overly excited or rowdy dog can be a major distraction on the road, increasing the risk of an accident.

How pets could cause a car accident

One of the biggest contributors to deadly car accidents is distracted driving. These distractions can range from seemingly harmless actions such as eating or talking to passengers, to more risky behaviors like texting while driving. Importantly, pets can also be a distraction.

Unrestrained dogs in a new setting, such as a moving car, may display erratic behavior. Because of their anxiety or fear, they could start barking and crying nonstop. In a small, confined space like a car, these noises can make it hard for the driver to focus.

Moreover, without any proper pet restraint, dogs could step on buttons, open the window and jump out. If the dog is seeking comfort, it may attempt to get onto the driver’s lap, step on the clutch and block their view.

Taking steps to improve a pet’s comfort and security in a car can pave the way for a smoother and more enjoyable journey for both the pet and its owner.

Ways to travel with pets safely

Driving with a dog means ensuring that a pet is properly restrained and comfortable. A dog that hasn’t traveled much may need additional help to relax. Owners can start by gradually familiarizing the dog with the car and its movement.

Taking the dog for a walk before a car ride can also help tire it out and potentially ensure that it stays calm while in the car.

Moreover, investing in pet safety gear can go a long way. This not only secures the dog during car rides, but it also mitigates any worries the owner might have about their pet’s safety. By minimizing distractions and properly restraining pets, drivers can reduce the risk of endangering themselves and others on the road.