Don't Miss: "Bark Buckle UP" Pet Safety Day Events
Paris Hilton and Britney Spears have both gotten away with it, but if you drive with your dog unrestrained in your car and you live in California, then you may soon be breaking the law.
A bill sponsored by California lawmaker Bill Maze is looking to get Fido out of the driver's seat. On May 5th, his bill passed in the California Assembly with a 44-11 vote and was approved by the Senate without a vote to spare. The 21-17 vote sent the legislation back to the Assembly, which already passed the bill, to approve amendments before sending the measure to the Governator.
Violators could be fined $35 if they are found to have an animal in their arms or laps, says the San Diego Union Tribune. The bill may not go into effect until July 1, 2009. Animals are the ninth-ranked cause of driver distraction, according to the bill's analysis.
We're already focused on the importance of safety seats for children traveling in cars, but what about pet safety while traveling in cars? Did you know that a 60-pound unrestrained dog in a 35 mph accident can cause an impact of 2,700 pounds slamming against a windshield or another passenger. Unrestrained animals can also become a problem for first responders to accident scenes when they become aggressive out of fright and impede the rescue of human victims or run out into traffic and cause another accident or be hit by another vehicle. Not to mention how easily they could jump or fall out of the vehicle through car windows during simple turns, as happened to this owner.
And yet, as many as 98% of pets currently travel unrestrained. If obeying the law isn't enough to keep your beloved ball of fur buckled up, then why not consider your pet's safety? "Bark Buckle UP" (www.barkbuckleup.com) is planning several Pet Safety Day to help teach drivers how to safely travel with their pets.
"Bark Buckle UP" Events will be held on:
*Saturday September 20, 2008, at Jim Fisher Volvo in Portland, Oregon;
*Sunday, September 21, 2008, at Volvo of Santa Monica,
Santa Monica, California;
*And from Thursday through Sunday, October 2-5, 2008 (with a special Family Day Giveaway on October 5th) as part of the Anaheim Auto Show, at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, California.
Attendees at these "Bark Buckle UP" special events will learn about the importance of safe pet travel from Pet Safety Expert and Founder of Bark Buckle UP, Christina Selter, as well as Fetch Pet Care Professionals and Bark Busters Pet Trainers. Dogs for the Deaf will also be participating. Bring your dog and test and try various pet travel and safety products for free, win prizes, giveaways, eat free treats for dogs and humans, and enter the "Safest Pet in America" contest.
Bark Buckle UP will be giving away free first responder approved Pet Safety Kits. Kits include an emergency pet card and safety decal, to list important information -- if you have a pet at home in need of care, if you are unable to care for it, who to call to care for your pet if they've been in an accident with you, and the name and phone number of your pet's veterinarian. In the event of an accident, the information provided in the Bark Buckle UP Pet Safety Kit will help rescue workers properly seek care for your pet. Bark Buckle UP continues to work closely with fire, police, and rescue officials nationwide to gain their support and teach them where to locate the emergency pet card and window decal.
"Seat belts protect millions of people every day," said Selter, who buckles up her dog Betty, even if she is just driving to the supermarket. "In the event of an accident, an unrestrained pet can escape and be hit by another vehicle, cause another collision, or attack emergency crews trying to reach an injured party. It only takes a few minutes to safeguard your pet and by properly securing your pet you are protecting yourself, your passengers and your pet from injury, not to mention protecting other drivers and strangers trying to help."
Selter works closely with fire and police personnel who support the safety program. "Just like Click it or Ticket, the Bark Buckle UP campaign helps save lives," says Selter.
By Brandy Schaffels