A loose pet in a car may as well be a neon sign warning, "accident ahead."
Pets should always be restrained, and depending on the size and type of animal, restraints vary from harnesses and belts to crates and cages to car seats and other barriers. Unrestrained, pets could be catapulted into the passenger cabin during an accident or sudden stop.
Free roaming pets may also distract the driver, whose main attentions should be on the road. Pets might jump into a driver's lap, obstruct the driver's view or even become tangled in the gas or brake pedals, leaving the driver unable to control the car. The problem is serious; recent California legislation makes it illegal for anyone to drive with a pet in his or her lap.