April 24, 2011
At present there is no specific laws that require a dog to be restrained while riding inside a vehicle, however if there is an accident and the dog is injured because it wasn’t restrained, you could be subjected to a fine under the Prevention of cruelty to Animals act. At least, that’s how it reads here in Australia.
There are rules about keeping a dog in the back of a truck, like here in Australia, if you transport an animal in the back of an open vehicle, that animal must be restrained. In the state of New South Wales a fine of $5,500.00 or 6-months imprisonment can be imposed on the driver if this rule is not followed. In Queensland the same rule is in effect and it carries a fine of $22,500.00 or 1-year imprisonment. It should be noted that working dogs such as those used to drive a herd are exempt from these rules.
My research didn’t turn up fines in other Countries. But I’m sure there are laws regarding restraining a dog in the back of a vehicle, if not, doing so should be common sense.
The prevention of cruelty to animals organizations all have a position on the matter, which includes protecting the animal from becoming injured, The RSPCA and I’m sure other organizations around the world highly recommends that you restrain your pet while travelling inside your vehicle.
I did read where several countries or jurisdictions are planning to introduce bills, which will make it an offence to carry animals in a moving car un-restrained. In the meantime, there are plenty of devices on the market that are easy to use and connect with your vehicle’s seatbelt system.
For now the decision is up to the pet owner.
Happy and safe travels