In any state across the country, traveling with a small child that isn’t properly restrained is illegal – but only New Jersey carries these same laws for pets. And, dog owners that don’t comply could face hefty fines and even jail time.
Did you know that 98% of dogs aren’t properly restrained during travel Distracted driving is the number one cause of accidents across the country, with unrestrained dogs being a major source of distraction. Not only is this unsafe for you, the driver, but your dog faces serious injury if not restrained during travel. With these facts in mind, New Jersey lawmakers are cracking down on the dangers of transporting animals without proper restraint.
New Jersey is the only state in the country where driving with unrestrained pets is a violation of animal cruelty law. Drivers cited for failing to properly secure their pets can face fines ranging from $250 to $1,000 and may face as much as six months in jail.
Pets hanging their heads out the window, riding in the back of a pickup truck, or sitting on a driver’s lap are among animal cruelty offenses in New Jersey. While no other state boasts laws as clear as those in New Jersey pertaining to restraining dogs in cars, Arizona, Connecticut, and Maine can charge a driver with an unrestrained dog under their distracted driver laws and Hawaii drivers are specifically prohibited from driving with a dog on their laps.
No matter what state you live in, it’s vital to safely restrain your dogs during travel. Luckily, there are a wide variety of products and methods of restraint to protect your pet in the car.