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Whether our furry friends are bouncing with excitement about driving to the park or shivering with terror over a vet visit, keeping them properly constrained is critical for both the animal and humans in the vehicle. Keep these tips in mind for safe driving with pets in the car as you buzz around Polk, FL’s busy streets.

Contain Your Pets

Florida laws do not require you to secure pets. However, you can receive a careless driving citation if the animal causes an accident. An unrestrained pet can also get seriously injured in even a fender bender by falling, being hit with an airbag, or crashing into the windshield. The American Automobile Association warns that a small pet exerts nearly 300 pounds of pressure. This is a deadly amount of force. Effective pet containers and carriers withstand rollover impacts and are secured against the rear seat in the cargo area. Non-certified crates and harnesses can restrain the animal to prevent distractions. However, they may not properly protect your pet during an accident.

Consider the Temperature

Florida’s blistering temperatures pose a serious risk to animals that are left in overheated vehicles. At just 85 degrees outside, temperatures can soar to 120 degrees in a non-ventilated car. As a result, some Florida counties have passed rules about leaving pets unattended since their organs can be damaged by only 30 minutes of intense heat. Cracked windows and water are a must if you need to step away from the vehicle without your pet for a few minutes.

Traveling Long Distances

Planning for potty, water, and food breaks is important if you will be driving with pets for several hours. Rest areas are great for dogs on a leash, but cats may need their litter box. Bring along a comfy cushion and favorite toys. This will offer some comfort to stressed pets and entertainment to prevent boredom.

Keep yourself, passengers and pets protected by maintaining a crack-free windshield. The windshield repair experts at Mr. Auto Glass are available at (866) 300-5013 to offer convenient auto glass services across the southwest Florida region.

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