For many, there’s nothing better than driving around with your furry best friend in the passenger seat. Unfortunately, this activity can turn dangerous very quickly. Having an animal in the car can lead to major distractions for the driver that could result in a serious accident on the road. As stated by a Lowell car accident lawyer, “An auto accident can cause serious to catastrophic injuries to those involved.”

According to Pet Pro Supply Co, 60% of dog owners have driven while distracted by their pets as passengers. These distractions can be magnified by a dog that is loose in the vehicle or displaying anxious behaviors. Below, we will discuss how to keep your dog (and yourself!) safe while riding in the car. 

  • Buckle up: Restrain your dog using a harness or a dog seatbelt to prevent them from roaming around the moving vehicle. This can prevent instances of your dog jumping in your lap or climbing on you while you’re operating the car.
  • Check the car temperature: On a 75 degree day, the temperature inside of a vehicle can go up to 100 degrees. Avoid leaving your pup inside a car as they can experience heat exhaustion, heat stroke, and in some instances, death.
  • Use barriers: Limit your dog’s space in the car without using a dog seat belt or a leash by setting up a divider in the car. The divider can block the dog from accessing the driver and passenger seat, but still be able to stretch out and relax in the back part of the car.
  • Take breaks: Plan breaks on your drive for your dog to get out and stretch their legs. This can include local dog parks or safe areas away from busy roads. This can help your dog get out any extra energy and help them relax during the ride. 
  • Keep front seats for humans only: Make the front part of the car a “humans only” zone. Your dog will be less likely to jump in your lap or cause you to take your eyes off the road for long periods of time if they are confined to the backseat.

Driving with your dog doesn’t have to be stressful. There are many ways, including dog seat belts and crates,  that can help you and your dog stay safe while enjoying a ride together.

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