For many of us, our pets are valued members of the family. Yet, while we automatically wear our own seat belts and place our children in approved child safety seats, we do not restrain our pets when they are riding in the car with us. In the case of a car crash, this puts our pets in danger.
In a wreck, a car comes to a sudden stop. Seat belts keep the occupants from continuing to travel forward and through the windshield. If your pet is not restrained, then the same thing can happen to your dog or cat. Even worse, your pet could become a live missile and hit another family member in the head causing serious injury.
These tips from Atlanta car crash attorney Shane Smith can help your pet travel safely and securely.
• Cats should always travel in a cage or other carrier to allow them to feel secure and to prevent them from climbing under your feet and around the car while you are driving.
• A dog that is riding in a pick-up truck bed should be in a protective dog kennel that is fastened to the truck bed.
• Dogs should never ride in the driver’s lap.
• Dogs should not ride in the front passenger seat if that seat is equipped with air bags.
• Harnesses, tethers and other straps to secure pets during travel are available at most pet stores. If your dog often travels with you, you can have your car fitted with a dog safety belt specifically for your breed of dog.
• Pets should not be allowed to ride with their head hanging outside the car window. Dirt and other debris may get in the pets eyes or ears causing infection. The dog may also be injured by a closely passing vehicle.
• The safest place for your pet is in a back seat pet restraint.
If your pet is injured in an Atlanta accident, you have the right to make a claim for your pet’s medical care. Because your pet is considered property rather than a person, damages may be limited.
To learn more about your right to compensation for property damage after an Atlanta auto accident, contact the Law Offices of Shane Smith and request our free book, “Property Damage Guide for Georgia.” If you have questions or need help, we can schedule a free consultation to discuss your Georgia car wreck case.