Animals in Cars
Once you’ve made sure your family are safely restrained in the car, it is worth turning your attention to your pets, for your own sake as well as theirs.
In the event of an accident, a small dog such as a West Highland Terrier could be hurled at the head of someone sitting in the front of the car like a canine cannonball. Or, if your dog is a large breed, such as a Labrador, it could be catapulted through the car with the force of a baby elephant, injuring all in its way. In both cases it is unlikely that the dog, or the human occupants, would survive such a violent impact.
If you do travel regularly with a dog you should invest in a pet carrier (ideal for cats and small pets too, but should not simply be left unrestrained on the rear seat), dog guard, pet seatbelt or travel crate. The crate is the safest option, especially for larger dogs, but does depend on the type and size of your car – it is best suited to estate models. A dog guard works best in hatchbacks, but must be securely fitted in order to protect all occupants. Whereas pet seatbelts can be used in any car, but may take an older dog some time to get used to.