Holiday travel tips: drive safe with your pets onboard image

As the Christmas holiday season is fast approaching it’s safe to assume that many car owners are going to hit the – sometimes-slippery – roads. And because many of them also own pets, let’s talk about a safe trip for all parties involved.

Millions of pet owners might put their beloved animals at risk – or even themselves – without even knowing it, but if you follow a few easy pointers and tips you might turn a potentially disastrous ride into that great holiday trip you’ll want to remember. First off, Ryan McTigue, the Michigan, US, Humane Society spokesperson recommends that all pets (whether in the back seat or in the trunk) should be secured – a crate or a harness that attaches to the seat belt for dogs, a carrier for cats and other small animals. You don’t want any of them slip out an open window while driving or jumping in front of you or among the pedals at the driver’s feet.

Another big accident-in the making premise is when you drive with the pet in the lap – in the event of an accident, the rapidly inflating airbag would instantly kill it. And, while dogs traditionally love that, sticking their head out of the window is another bad idea – at automotive speeds a pebble that would chip your windshield could injure or blind your beloved pet. If you like to travel a lot with your animal you really know that the pet needs to get acclimated to cars when they’re young – you might find out that it’s going to always get sick or you can mitigate the understandable fear – remember they don’t actually understand what you’re doing when stuffing them inside a moving “crate”.