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Your Opinion: Driven by pets to distraction

Your Opinion: Driven by pets to distraction

May 20th, 2013 by Beverly Shelton, Jefferson City in News

Dear Editor:

This is not a case of how cute is that doggie in the window story but how dangerous for the driver to have a dog sitting in the front seat mobilizing more attention from the driver than necessary.

The animal is next to the window, partially on the driver's lap, taking attention from the person's vision and obstructing his or her viewing the instruments. It may seem and look cute but an upcoming accident can take place within a few seconds.

More times then I can say this is happening on the streets. This writer sees it taking place at intersections as well as witnessing a situation where a female driver started to enter onto the Missouri 179 ramp which showed a "Do Not Enter" sign.

She avoided a possible three- or four-vehicle accident when she realized her mistake and turned aside going on the her destination. My car was directly in back of hers coming down Commercial Drive. And yes, she was paying too much attention to the animal next to her.

Don't drivers realize that an animal can lunge forward if the vehicle could stop suddenly, thus throwing the animal against the steering wheel causing a serious even fatal accident.

For a person's own safety, it is suggested that the driver show more consideration for the welfare of not only him/herself, but for the pet, the oncoming traffic and for other passengers who might be in the car. It is hoped that more drivers quit this practice and show some responsibility toward life.

By all means take them with you to the grocery store and let them sit in your car. See that they are trained properly so they won't spend their time barking at other customers who get out of their car. It's just a cautionary measure to have the animal trained by a professional individual.