Pet Seatbelts and Harnesses
Written by Elena Barnard | Friday, March 9, 2012
When it comes to our animals, we pet owners consider them a member of our immediately family and as such we strive to keep them healthy, safe and happy. So should pet owners not ensure that their cat or dog is secure when they are travelling in a car, van or any other type of automobile? Surely using a harness or cage will help to keep them safe and reduce the risk of injury to both the human and animal passengers in the car?
Whilst it is not actually law that a cat or dog must be ‘strapped-in’, section 57 of the highway code states that when in a vehicle, a dog or any other animal should be suitably restrained so they cannot distract you whilst you are driving or injure you, or themselves, if you stop quickly. This makes a lot of sense in that any danger or risk of distraction posed to the driver should be greatly reduced to decrease the chance of an accident. Dogs are instinctive creatures and no matter how well-trained they are they can always react to something they see, or hear, in an instinctive way. This reaction could lead to them distracting the driver which, in turn could cause a road traffic accident (RTA).
Of course, RTA’s occur all the time and hardly any of them are actually caused by a dog inside a vehicle. Should a car be involved in a collision with another object outside of it then it is essential for a dog to be safely secured in much the same way it is for a human to be wearing a seatbelt. If a vehicle has to suddenly brake hard or collides with something and a dog is not strapped in, then the animal can not only injure itself but also anyone else in the vehicle.
There are a few different ways of keeping a dog secure in car and these include a seat belt harness, pet carrier, dog cage or dog guard. All types will not make the dog uncomfortable and are designed to keep them safe whilst not completely stifling all movement. By using one of these methods a pet owner will have peace of mind that their furry friend will have the best protection possible whilst travelling in the vehicle.
When you insure your dog you are safeguarding their health in that you are fully prepared should any harm or illness befall them in the future and thus, minimising the risk. The same can be said for securing your animal in a moving vehicle, by doing so you are greatly reducing the risk of injury, or worse, for both yourself and your four-legged friend. Animal Friends offer a range of policies for dogs, cats and horses, and we also insure older pets.
This topic seems to be one of great interest for pet owners and so we would love to hear your thoughts and opinions on the matter in the comments box below this blog.