Traveling Tails, by Nicole Bruder, Owner of Lucy Goo Pet Sitting
Driving in Houston in the spring and summer months is an adventure to be sure. What with the warmer temperatures, the stop-and-start traffic, and the sheer magnitude of people who seem to suddenly have forgotten how to drive, most days, just getting behind the wheel is risky. And while these things are in a constant state of change, one thing that never changes is Houstonian’s deep love for dogs. So it always boggles my mind when I see drivers with their beloved dogs in the car without some form of animal restraint.
In the past two months alone, I’ve counted over twenty dogs riding inappropriately in cars; these dogs might be riding in owner’s laps, hanging out car windows, or standing free in truck beds. We’re all guilty of wanting our dogs close to us, but what would happen to our dogs in the event of an accident?
Let’s face facts: dogs are smaller than humans, and in most instances, weigh less. This means that in a crash, momentum could cause a dog’s body to become a projectile, injuring not only the dog, but also anyone near. Without some kind of formal restraint in the car, most of these dogs will die. Frankly that knowledge terrifies me, and I’m sure it scares many of you. But what can we do to prevent something like this from happening?
The safest things you can do for yourself and your dog is either to harness her into the backseat, or put her into a car kennel that buckles-again, this would go in the backseat (they work great for cats and small pets, too).
Maybe you’d like to have your dog beside you in the car, but consider a car crash: your dog may never have another chance to run at the dog park, to get belly rubs, or to lick your face when you’re happy or sad.
Buckling your dog into the backseat might seem strange, but it’s no less than what we would do for our children. We fasten their seat belts because we want to keep them safe…we don’t let them hang out the window when driving down the freeway, either. Let’s do the same for our pets and keep them safe, too.
Commit to restraining your dogs when in the car-for their safety and for yours.
Traveling safely with pets entails not allowing them to roam freely in the car or in the back of a truck. There are many secure products on the market to make safety a priority. A good site to visit for product choices is: www.petautosafety.com