Drivers risk huge fines when travelling with pets this summer

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With the summer holidays coming up and lockdown restrictions slowly being lifted, many families will be looking to travel. Pet owners are legally allowed to travel with their furry companions in the car, but if they do not follow the rules of the Highway Code, they could risk being fined.

The research, from Peter Vardy, has revealed five common and potentially expensive mistakes that pet owners make when driving. 

The most expensive fine is for not properly securing a dog, which could set you back £5,000.

Rule 57 of the Highway Code states that dogs should be “suitably restrained” so they do not injure you or themselves.

The code states: “When in a vehicle make sure dogs or other animals are suitably restrained so they cannot distract you while you are driving or injure you, or themselves if you stop quickly.”

Should a pet that is roaming freely cause you to swerve or break suddenly, you could be landed with a careless driving fine of up to £5,000.

A crash-tested pet seatbelt, cage or secure carrier are the most suitable options for securing your pooch.

If you have broken down on a hard shoulder, you are not allowed to let your pets out of the car.

This would breach Rule 56 of the Highway Code and could land you a careless driving fine of £2,500.


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It could cause a distraction to other drivers and a frightened pet could lose control and run out into the road, causing an accident.

Allowing a dog to stick their head out of the window can also lead to a £2,500 fine, in addition to three points on your licence.

You could be flagged for “driving without due care and attention” and pulled over.

Whilst it is not a legal requirement set out in legislation, it is a sign that a pet is not properly secured and could distract other drivers, especially when going at high speeds.


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