Driving with your dog in the car can be very dangerous if you don't take the right precautions.
A survey by AAA says that about a third of drivers admit to being distracted by their pets while driving, while 59% admit to at least one distracting behavior while their dog is in the car. These include petting their dog (55%), allowing their dog to sit in their lap (21%), giving their dog food or water (7%) and playing with their dog (5%) - all while driving. Add in that looking away from the road for as little as 2 seconds doubles your risk of an accident and this spells disaster.
It's also dangerous for the dogs: less than 20% of people who take their dog in the car say they use any kind of dog car harness.
"Restraining your pet when driving can not only help protect your pet, but you and other passengers in your rehicle as well," said Jenny Huebner-Davidson, AAA National's Traffic Safety Programs manager. "An unrestrained 10-pound dog in a crash at 50 mph will exert roughly 500 pounds of pressure, while an unrestrained 80-pound dog in a crash at only 30 mph will exert 2,400 pounds of pressure. Imagine the devastation that can cause to your pet and anyone in the vehicle."
Keeping dogs restrained in the car reduces that missile-type damage. How? A restrained dog isn't hurled around the cabin - or worse, ejected from the vehicle. That means less injury to both passengers and dogs.
Do yourself and your dog a favor: buckle up, both of you, when you're in the car.
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