Allowing your pet pooch to roam free around the car could lead to a £2,500 fine for ‘driving without due care and attention’
Pet owners in the UK who drive around with their furry friend in the car are being warned about the dangers of letting them roam free inside the vehicle – if caught, you could be hit with a hefty fine and penalty points.
Having an animal in the car without being restrained is dangerous and could lead to an accident due to driver distraction, or may even cause an injury to your pet pooch in the event of having to make an emergency stop.
An excitable or agitated pet can lead to driver distraction which is both dangerous for you and the animal but for other road users too.
According to previously released figures, around 40% of motorists who own pets confessed to allowing their furry friends to roam free in the car with being restricted.
Motorists are responsible for their animal’s welfare at all times, including when travelling in a vehicle, states the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
“When in a vehicle make sure dogs or other animals are suitably restrained so they cannot distract you while you are driving or injure you, or themselves, if you stop quickly,” states Rule 57 of the Highway Code.
“A seat belt harness, pet carrier, dog cage or dog guard are ways of restraining animals in cars.”
If caught, a driver can be issued with a £200 on-the-spot fine, which can increase to a hefty £2,500 if convicted for ‘driving without due care and attention’.
A motorist may also be fine £1,000 for driving without being in proper control of their vehicle and can also be given a nine penalty point endorsement.
Offending drivers could also find their insurance policy invalidated and may be refused a pay out in the event of an accident.
Motoring editor at Confused.com, Amanda Stretton, says: “Drivers must restrain their dogs properly, or they could receive fines up to £2,500,” adding: “Driving with an unrestrained pet can also invalidate your car insurance, meaning having to personally pay out for repairs in the event of a claim.”
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