Car Accidents, Distracted Driving

When Driving With Your Dog as Your Passenger

Posted by Trent Kelly on November 9, 2019
When Driving With Your Dog as Your Passenger

Driving with pets.

If the outpouring of love and kindness after reading about the deep bond between a man named John Pointer and his dog Benny is any indication, people in Austin have genuinely caring and special relationships with their dogs. Twenty musicians in Austin played at a benefit for Benny, and Benny and John’s story went viral after Benny’s death from cancer.

Feeling a deep and genuine love for dogs is a sentiment echoed across the United States, which is why so many of us are unwilling to part with our pets merely because we have to drive somewhere. Quite often, we happily load our pets into the vehicle and bring them with us.

In fact, in a survey sponsored by AAA and Kurgo Pet Products, 84% of pet owners said they have brought their pet along with them while driving. Yet, pet restraints are used by only 16% of people driving with a dog in the vehicle.

As any practiced Austin distracted driving accident lawyer would advise, this can be dangerous for both you and your pet. The following are distracted driving behaviors listed in the AAA/Kurgo survey that respondents admitted to:

  • Petting their dog
  • Allowing their dog to sit in their lap
  • Feeding their dog or giving their dog treats
  • Playing with their dog

Any one of these actions can cause a serious distracted driving accident. Sadly, last fall in Houston, two people were killed after a dog in the car started “acting up” and distracted the driver. Also, during an accident, deployed airbags can injure or kill your dog.

Infographic driving with pets

If you must take your pet with you during a drive, AAA advises that you use restraints, barriers or crates in your vehicle to reduce the risk of your dog’s actions unintentionally causing an accident. Always put your dog in the back seat where it’s safest. Padded harnesses with straps are available to connect to your car’s seatbelt or LATCH system. If you choose to use a crate, be sure to strap it down. Pet car seats or baskets are available for smaller dogs.

Even with every precaution taken, accidents can still happen. If you find yourself in need of capable distracted driving accident lawyer in Austin, Texas, call Terry & Kelly. With us, you will receive the personal attention you deserve.

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