At Lexus of Orange Park, we’re not “just” Lexus dealers near Green Cove Springs, FL. We’re also pet lovers who enjoy seeing dogs in cars having a great time keeping their family members company. Even if they’re just going for a quick ride to the bank, most dogs simply enjoy being a part of the trip.

In a survey conducted by AAA and Kurgo, 60 percent of respondents said they have taken their dog along for a ride with them at least once in the past 12 months. While we think it’s great that so many people travel with their pets, the survey showed that a large number of drivers allow themselves to be distracted by their dogs. More specifically, 52 percent of motorists admit to petting their dog while driving and 23 percent of them have taken at least one hand off of the wheel to hold their pet in place when the brakes were applied.

Approximately 19 percent of motorists also used at least one hand to prevent their dog from getting into the front seat and 18 percent reached into the back seat to give their pet some attention. A surprising 17 percent of drivers allowed their dog to sit in their lap or they held their pet while driving while 13 percent of motorists have given their dog food or a treat while operating their vehicle. Believe it or not, three percent of survey participants admitted that they’ve taken a picture of their dog while driving.

Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of accidents in the United States so it’s important to minimize the distractions you’re exposed to when you’re driving. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t bring your dog with you when you run errands or take a road trip. Instead, it means you should travel with your dog in a safe manner.

The best way to keep yourself, your pet, and other drivers safe when you’re traveling with your dog is to use a pet restraint. Using a pet restraint will limit your dog’s ability to move around your automobile and it will prevent you from being distracted by your dog. A pet restraint can also help protect your dog from being injured, or reduce the severity of his or her injuries, if you are involved in an accident because it will prevent your dog from being bounced around the cabin or thrown from your car.

Whether you drive a 2017 Lexus ES 350 or another one of our luxury cars, there just isn’t anything like traveling with your pet. To make sure your car is ready for your next road trip with your dog, give us a call, contact us online, or stop by Lexus of Orange Park to schedule a Lexus service appointment. We’ll make sure your car is ready for the rigors of the road so you and your dog can enjoy peace of mind during your travels.