Many dog owners may unknowingly break the law when they take their pets out for a drive.
For those in the UK, for example, driving with an unrestrained dog in the car could result in a £5,000 fine.
As per the Highway Code, dogs must be “suitably restrained” when in a moving vehicle.
The code reads:
“When in a vehicle make sure dogs or other animals are suitably restrained so they cannot distract you while you are driving or injure you, or themselves, if you stop quickly. A seat belt harness, pet carrier, dog cage or dog guard are ways of restraining animals in cars.”
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Many people hop into their cars with their pets and don’t think twice about restraining them. However, they could be doing themselves (and their dogs) a disservice. After all, it’s really not safe to be driving unbuckled and, likewise, it’s not safe to drive unrestrained as a pet.
Even a small tap on the breaks could send your furry friend flying into (or out of) the window. But beyond the danger to health, it could also lead to a hefty fine.
If caught distracted driving due to an unrestrained pet, drivers can be issued a £1,000 fine.
Add in other penalty points and you can be looking at a £5,000 or even a driving ban!
As if those weren’t enough reason to secure your dog in the car, driving with an unrestrained dog could also impact your car insurance.
According to The Mirror, Rachel Wait of MoneySuperMarket said:
“While driving with your pet in your car – whether in the boot or on a seat – might seem like a harmless way of getting from A to B, the truth is you can risk invalidating your car insurance. If you’re in a prang with an unrestrained pet in your car, insurers may use it against you – regardless of whether it was as a direct result of the animal itself – so it’s worth being on the safe side and making sure ‘man’s best friend’ is properly restrained.”
You can check out your specific policy details to see if there’s any mention of pets or speak with a representative for further clarity. However, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.
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