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Distracted Driving with Pets

distracted drivingThere are lots of pet owners among us here at Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys, so we know that dogs can be the best of companions. But, driving with pets in tow can lead to distracted driving accidents.

Over half of all pet owners report bringing their pet for a car ride at least once a month, and one-third of pet owners do so at least once a week. When bringing your furry friend along for the ride, it’s important to keep safety in mind in order to protect you, your passengers, other motorists, and your pet, too.

According to AAA, some common distracted driving behaviors that pet owners are guilty of include: petting their dog, using hands or arms to restrict dog’s movement or hold dog in place when putting on brakes, using hands/arms to keep dog from climbing from the backseat to the front seat, reaching into backseat to interact with dog, and, worst of all – allowing dog to sit in lap or holding dog while driving, and taking photos of dog.

Any of these behaviors can be dangerous because even a two-second distraction can double your risk of a car crash.

Keep Your Dog Safe In the Car

So how can you make sure you and your dog have safe travels?

1. Keep your dog in the back seat. It may be tempting to let your four-legged friend ride shotgun, but the back seat is much safer in the case of an accident.  Airbags that are designed to save human lives in a crash can be deadly to dogs. And, keeping your pup in the back seat reduces his/her ability to distract or physically obstruct the driver.

2. Use some type of restraint, whether it is a padded harness, a pet seat belt, pet carrier, or a doggie car seat for smaller breeds. These not only help minimize pets’ moving around and distracting the driver, but they also keep your pet from becoming a projectile in the event of a crash. Make sure to use the right type and size of car restraint for your pet so that they are comfortable and safe. Never try to buckle your dog into a seat belt or car seat designed for people.

If you have suffered from injuries resulting from a car accident, you may be entitled to collect compensation for your medical costs, lost time from work, and pain and suffering. Contact Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys for a free consultation to learn more. We will answer your questions and explain your legal rights.

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Posted in Car Accidents.


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