Posted July 17, 2013 by James Rhodes in Pets

Driving with dogs: Tips to keep everyone in the car safe

It&rsquos only organic for man&rsquos best friend to keep close by his master&rsquos side, but for dog owners who drive frequently, bringing Fido along for the ride can be risky. The dilemma is especially worrisome for older drivers a current study carried out by researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham showed that for people 70 years and older, crash rates were higher among those who frequently drove with pets in the car. But for many drivers, leaving valuable pets behind isn&rsquot an choice. The best compromise is to find solutions that will get you from point A to point B with no compromising the security of human or animal passengers.

Distracted driving is a developing concern and a loose pet in the car undoubtedly numbers among the possible hazards that can take your eyes &ndash and mind &ndash off the road and lead to accidents. Even though older drivers may possibly not be as likely to be distracted by texting or smartphone surfing, even those who have spent many years navigating the roads need to have to honestly assess how possessing a pet in the vehicle can divert their interest away from the road.

To remain safe on the road when Fido is with you, bear in mind these tips:

* Don&rsquot permit pets in the front seats. Obtaining a pet sit on your lap is clearly distracting, but if he&rsquos in the front passenger seat, the problem can be just as poor. In the front seats, your pet is far more most likely to be inside your line of sight and obstruct your view of the road. An unrestrained dog in the front seats could also be easily injured if you have to slam on the brakes or swerve, or are hit from behind. The force with which airbags deploy also poses a safety hazard for dogs in the front seat &ndash if you&rsquore in an accident and they inflate and hit your dog, he could easily sustain an injury.

* Create separation. There are a variety of pet barriers on the marketplace that can keep your pet from moving among the front and back seats of your automobile. Installing a barrier will help hold your pet out of your way and diminish issues about him becoming propelled forward in case you have to make a sudden quit.

* Restrain your pet. There are a number of possibilities for pet restraints in your vehicle. Pet seatbelts and vehicle seats will aid keep a dog safely in spot. Keeping a crate in the automobile is also a good option. Make confident it&rsquos secured and large sufficient so that he can stand up, turn about and comfortably sit or lay down. Add a soft pad in the bottom of the crate and it may just become your pet&rsquos favored new way to travel.

* Brush up on your driving expertise. Right now&rsquos driving environment is probably extremely different than it was when you very first got your license. A refresher course, like those offered by AARP Driver Security, is an excellent way to make sure that your expertise are up to date. Brushing up on defensive driving methods and the crucial rules of the road will aid maintain everyone in your car safe &ndash and you could even qualify for a multi-year automobile insurance discount from your insurance company (check with your agent for particulars). AARP Driver Security courses are offered in a classroom or on the internet setting, in both English and Spanish.

Pets are essential members of the loved ones, so it&rsquos only correct that drivers consider their safety, just as they would for any other passenger. For much more secure driving tips and details about AARP Driver Safety, pay a visit to www.aarp.org/drive.

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James Rhodes