Many of us like to bring our pets along on car trips. We even and often make travel plans specifically with our pets in mind. Really, how many of us live within walking distance of that amazing dog park everyone has been bending our ear about forever? Swift-Cantrell Park anyone? And is your veterinarian across the street? What if your bearded dragon has a cough? What if your fennec fox needs its enormous ears cleaned? Any way you slice it, pets often need a ride in the car.
So what do you do when you are on a trip with your nonverbal best friend and get into an accident? The first thing you should do is contact the Law Offices of Roger Ghai, P.C. for help. But here are some things to be aware of to ease your worry beforehand:
Secure Your Pets to Protect Them From Harm
When driving with your pet, it is important to make sure they are secure. With small pets, the key is making sure that they are in an appropriate cage or container. Keeping small pets in a crate or soft cage will help them to stay in place during an accident, or even when you take corners a little too sharply. The pet will also feel more secure in their own space and as a result be less prone to move around and put themselves in a place of vulnerability.
For larger pets, you should take the same precautions you would with any living being in your car. Larger animals such as medium dogs and above should be seat-belted in. If possible, it is best to belt them into the backseat rather than the front. This is because of the airbags. Imagine your poor shepherd being hit by an airbag- they probably do not like the vacuum cleaner; the airbag would not only injure them, but scare the daylights out of them, too.
For a free legal consultation, call (770) 792-1000
Assess the Situation
Assuming you have taken the proper precautions, what do you do after an accident? The first thing is to remain calm and not react solely to your pet. Make sure everyone is ok before moving on to the animals.
Once you have checked all the human beings, take stock of your animal’s health. Not moving or disorientation is normal. Most dogs will breathe heavily. The best thing is to get your pets to the nearest veterinarian right away. But it is best not to drive your vehicle if it is damaged.
To repeat though, the most important thing is to make sure the pets are as safe as they can be while riding in your vehicle. Beyond that, make sure you drive safely and refrain from any sudden shifts, brakes, or accelerations. Following that, it is up to your insurance provider to determine what damages will be paid.
How an Attorney Will Help
Many insurance companies will cover your pet in an accident, so long as the accident was not your fault. Some insurance companies will cover pet injuries regardless of fault. But that is only if you have the right coverage, and more importantly, the right representation to make sure the insurance company pays the vet bill. The Law Offices of Roger Ghai, P.C. at 770-792-1000 are available to help make sure you are fully represented in the unfortunate case that you get in an accident with your pet.