Rallies Dog Lovers to Contact Local Legislators to Encourage Passage-
SPRINGFIELD, Ill., April 27, 2012 – If
Chicagoan Melissa Ramirez has her way, Illinois will be the safest place in the
country for drivers, pedestrians and animals. The inventor of the Doggie Seatbelt for small dogs is
working with legislators in Springfield to make it illegal to drive with an
animal on your lap.
State Sen. Martin
Sandoval, D-Cicero, filled a bill (http://1.usa.gov/IDOpz1), which will
prohibit drivers from having animals on their laps while behind the wheel.
with a dog can be just as dangerous as talking on the phone or texting –
especially if the animal gets excited. A distracted driver can easily cause an
accident hurting passengers, other drivers, pedestrians and the pet.
addition, not only can unrestrained dogs be distracting to the driver, but they
are dangerous to themselves. A ten-pound
unrestrained dog has the force of 80 pounds in a 40 mph car crash. That's 80
pounds of puppy smacking into the driver, other passengers or the car dashboard
is determined to ensure the passage of the proposed bill by asking Illinois
animal lovers to email their state representatives and ask them to protect
animals and people from distracted drivers with an animal on their lap. She added a push button to her web site (www.mydoggieseatbelt.com) where animal
supporters can input their zip code to receive the names and email addresses of
state legislators that represent them and email them to vote for the amendment
– all with one click.
need to update our driving laws so passengers, pedestrians and pets are safe
from distracted driving,” says Ramirez. “As a first step, “Paris Hilton” style
driving with a dog in your lap should not be legal.”
is the only state that specifically
prohibits a driver from operating a vehicle with a pet on his or her lap. The
law prohibits a driver from allowing an animal, person, or object to interfere
with his or her control of the vehicle. A similar law is in effect in Troy, MI.
dedication to dog safety comes from the heart. After her 12-pound puppy Max
became paralyzed from the waist down, while sitting in the front seat of her
husband's car when it was T-boned by another driver, she became determined to
raise awareness of the dangers of traveling with an unrestrained dog in a car.
She invented Doggie Seatbelt to
prevent other small dogs from going through the pain that Max suffered when he
landed at the foot pedals. The belt fills the void of quality tested restraints for dogs less than 25 pounds. It quickly
attaches to the pup’s existing harness and then to any backseat seatbelt to
prevent him from wiggling free.
Inc. is an independent company founded by Ramirez to call attention to the
dangers of traveling with an unrestrained dog in the car. The website www.mydoggieseatbelt.com includes ordering
information for quality-tested car dog restraints, safety tips for traveling
with dogs and updates on Chicago-area dog events.