When it comes to animals, the UK is definitely a nation of dog lovers. For many people who have a four legged friend, a dog is not just a pet, it is a member of the family, and this often means it is someone to be involved in all aspects of family life, from visiting friends and family, enjoying days out, and going on holiday.
All Car Leasing have recently been looking into our habits when it comes to our pets, and our cars. The results are illuminating in that they show how our attitudes change according to the breed, and therefore the size of the dog. There are always going to be occasions when your dog has to be in your car – a trip to the vets for instance being the obvious one, and yet a surprisingly high 21% do not allow their dogs in their car, citing the smell and dog hair as the main reasons why.
But what of those that do allow their dogs into their cars? It seems that many drivers are allowing their dogs unlimited amounts of freedom in the car, allowing them to travel unrestrained (the All Car Leasing figures suggest it is as high as 1 in 3 who have done this). This could cause an accident as dogs kept in the back try to get to the driver, and so motorists risk gaining points on their license and a hefty fine too, they also risk their car only being fit for the junkyard. Smaller breeds of dogs are most likely to be the ones that actually travel on the front seat (on a lap maybe) or in the foot well, with medium breeds spending more time on the back seat, and larger breeds are more likely to be kept in the boot, with owners actually opting for a hatchback or estate model to make this easier.
Travelling with your dog isn’t a problem, but if you leave your dog unrestrained and not secured it could be, not just for the driver who now has an added distraction, but also for the dog if you are unlucky enough to have an accident. If your dog really is ‘man’s best friend’, then don’t you have a responsibility to look after them when you are travelling?