Whether you are just taking a drive to the dog park or planning a road trip across the country, there are some things that you must consider before hitting the road with your pet. This article is for New Bedford pet owners that are looking for new ways to keep their pets safe while they are out on the road. For more safety tips and ideas to enhance your next road trip, contact your New Bedford car insurance agent or click through our blog for more information.
Start With Safety
The first area that will help to improve auto safety in Massachusetts with a pet is to actually think about safety. We all adhere to certain safeguarding procedures, such as properly using seat belts and ensuring that smaller passengers are safely buckled in before driving. This should extend to your pet as well. We’ve all driven past cars where dogs are sitting on the driver’s lap or hanging out a window. This is not safe for the pet – or for the driver.
A recent study revealed that as little as two percent of American pet owners restrained their pets while driving. Pets often move about the vehicle and, in some cases, have been known to actually cause accidents by jumping back and forth or by distracting the driver. In the event of an accident, an unrestrained pet can get lose and get hit by another vehicle or, because they are scared, attack emergency personnel that are trying to reach an injured person or the pet and get them to safety.
One study showed that an unrestrained 60 pound dog that was involved in an accident just while driving at 35 mph, would cause an impact of 2700 pounds when they slam into a windshield, car seat or other passenger. The dog would be seriously injured, if not killed. Smaller dogs are even more susceptible to injury when unrestrained – like a baby or small child.
There are a number of safety products available for New Bedford pet owners that can be used to properly restrain a pet. Pet car seats, booster seats so they can look out the window, while remaining restrained, special seat belts and other products are all designed to make your next road trip with your pet a safe one. Ask your New Bedford car insurance for other tips regarding auto safety in Massachusetts.
Consider Your Pet’s Health
There are other things that New Bedford pet owners must consider before taking a pet on a road trip. Basic rules, which are really more like common sense, can often get overlooked when thinking about the places you’ll be visiting and the things you’ll do on your trip.
Pets should never be left in a hot car – even for a short period of time. Even just a quick run into a convenience store can result in increased car temperatures, which can rise very quickly. Just cracking the windows isn’t enough. Your pet should never be left in your car on a warm or sunny day.
Also, always bring water for your pet, papers, such as vaccination records, which may be required by some states, current ID tags with contact information and any medications or special food your pet might need during your trip.
Plan Ahead for Fun and Safety
Before taking any trip with a pet, New Bedford pet owners should look at all aspects of the trip to determine whether or not it will be appropriate for their pet. Check out hotel and other destination options to ensure that your pet will be welcome and consider any risks that might possibly injure or harm your pet during your trip. Areas that have increased problems with fleas, ticks or mosquitoes should be considered carefully and you should make sure that your pet is up to date on all vaccines and pest prevention medications.
Pack carefully for your pet, bringing favorite foods, treats, toys and medications that might not be available at local stores or veterinarian offices throughout your travels, to ensure that he has everything he needs. Speak with your New Bedford insurance agent for other ideas that will help boost auto safety in Massachusetts, and ask if there are any additional riders or types of auto insurance in New Bedford that might help increase your coverage while traveling with a pet.
Preparation is key in anything you do, but when it comes to the safety of your loved ones, it is even more important to ensure that you do everything you can do to increase auto safety in Massachusetts and all across the country. Wherever you go this year with your family and family pet, make sure you make safety and preparation a big part of your trip.