How to travel ‘Safely ‘, with your best friend

It is illegal to drive with dogs unrestrained in cars. But how is the best way to restrain your hound on the move?

The Highway Code states ‘a seat belt harness, pet carrier, dog cage or dog guard’ are the best ways to restrain your animal.

As more dogs seem to be kept as pets post-pandemic, the issue has become a more common issue.

Car leasing company LeaseCar.uk have explored the different options open to motorists to enable them to make the best decision for their pet.

A dog looking out of a car windowDescription automatically generated with medium confidence

Woof racks

The Highway Code’s advice means the UK Government feels these options are the safest and most appropriate. A dog should never just be restrained by their collar alone.

A spokesperson for LeaseCar.uk said: “Whether travelling long distance or short, if you want to take your pet dog with you then you need to consider the safest option before embarking on your journey.

“With numerous options available it is worth taking some time to explore which will best suit you and your pet.”

Barking the same tune

It is also worthwhile exposing a pet to travelling in the car at a young age so they can get used to this mode of transport. It’s important to be aware that they can also suffer with motion sickness, so to travel carefully on the road.

The sooner animals are acclimatised to travel, and appropriate restraints, the better for all concerned.

This is why it is important to consider the options, whats most appropriate to size and the type of animal, and the vehicle in question. Do the research and ensure whatever the choice, it is fitted correctly.

The options

Here are the key considerations as outlined by LeaseCar.uk on what you need to think about:

Travel harness – These are a popular option with many pet owners. They come in a wide variety of sizes to suit the size of your animal. These are usually fairly straightforward to attach to your pet so they can sit securely in the car seat.

Crate – This might be a suitable option particularly if the crate is something that has been used for training purposes. If so, pets will often be familiar with the surroundings and take to travelling more smoothly.

Dog seat belts – Similar to seat belts used by humans, the idea is to plug into the buckle and clip onto the dog’s harness. The seat belt is adjustable to meet the size of your pet. They can help your pet stay upright without allowing them to roam around on the back seat.

Boot gate – Some animals find they are happiest in the boot of the car. A gate can help ensure that the pet doesn’t make its way into the backseat while on the journey. It’s a solution that gives the pet plenty of space in which to settle.

Carrier – A carrier is useful for holidays or long journeys as it is a portable version of a crate and is user friendly if needing to get in and out of the car a lot.

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