Dogs maybe man’s best friend but they could prove to be a distraction for drivers while on the road. This is what a recent survey had found when interviewed dog owners said that they often make driving mistakes and risky behaviour behind the wheel when their dog is along for the ride.
According to the findings of survey conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety and pet restraint products dealer Kurgo, there are plenty of instances that a dog riding with their owners in their car would lead to risky behaviour on the road. 31% of the respondents admitted that they have been distracted by their dog while they are driving, while 59% of them have participated in distracting behaviour while driving at least once when their dog is with them. Also, 55% say that they pet their dog while driving and 21% allow their dog to sit on their lap while behind the wheel.
Other types of distracting behaviour that dog owners admit to doing while driving is giving food and water to their dog (which comprise 7% of the respondents), and playing around with their dog (5%). Almost all of these distracting behaviours could lead to a car crash or worse, and this is further backed up by the AAA’s findings that looking away from the road while driving for only a couple of seconds would be enough to double the chances of getting the driver into a car crash.
The survey also showed that over 80% of the respondents bring their dogs with them on the car on a variety of trips, while only 17% of them use any form of restraining devices to hold their dog down while driving. Drivers are advised to use such restraining systems or devices while their pet is with them on a trip in the car.
Jennifer Huebner-Davidson, the Traffic Safety Program manager of AAA National, said in a statement that restraining one’s pet while driving would greatly protect the driver, passengers, and the pet itself while driving. She also described how a large and heavy dog could not only be a distraction in the car but also be a risk while unrestrained.
There are plenty of pet restraint products provided by Kurgo that are available in local pet stores across the country, and these products are reasonably priced and convenient for pet owners to use on their pets while driving.