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Driving with Pets in the Car

Updated: Dec 13, 2023

With so many pet friendly locations why would you not want to take your pet on your next staycation? Travelling with your pet in the vehicle is legal but they must be properly retrained, don’t let them sit in the front seat, or stick their head out of windows.

Rule 57 of the Highway Code states: “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. A seat belt harness, pet carrier, dog cage or dog guard are ways of restraining animals in cars.

While driving with an unsecured pet isn’t an offence, it could be considered as ‘driving without due care and attention’. This could lead to a fixed penalty and points on your driver’s licence, and could also invalidate insurance claims if your pet is found to have caused or contributed to an accident.

How to travel with your pet in the Vehicle:

Harness / Belt

A harness or specially designed seatbelt usually clips into existing seat belt fixtures and safely restrains your pet across their body, protecting them from injury in the event of an accident. Make sure there is enough slack in the belt for your pet to get comfortable, but not so much that they can roam around.


These are best placed in a rear seat or boot of vehicle, never on the front seat as they would be at risk from the airbags.

Dog guard

Using a mesh or metal guard between the boot and rear passenger seats allows your pet to move around freely without affecting you’re driving. However, note that these will protect you in an accident but not your pet.



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