Dog owners warned they could receive a fine of £5,000 if they let their pets hang out of their car window

Motoring experts have warned dog owners who let their pets hang out of their car windows that they could face a hefty fine of £5,000.

Motoring experts at have warned that Brits who have dogs with high levels of energy could be fined up to £5,000 due to a Highway Code Rule 57 that states drivers shouldn’t let their pet in the car unless they are suitably restrained.

If dogs are allowed to hang out of the car window on a hot day, it could be evidence that they are not restrained properly.

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Breaching the Highway Code does not carry a direct penalty, however, drivers could be pulled over by police and fined up to £1,000 for driving without proper control if their pet distracts them.

Dog sticks head out of car window. (Pic credit: sticks head out of car window. (Pic credit:
Dog sticks head out of car window. (Pic credit:

If an animal is found to have caused or contributed to a road accident, the owner could be fined up to £5,000 and be hit with points on their licence. It could also invalidate their car and pet insurance.

In order to be suitably restrained, the pet can be in a belt harness, a pet crate or cage, or in the boot of a car with a dividing dog guard between the book and the back seats.

Letting your dog hang its head out of the window of your car could also pose a health and safety risk for the dog as they could get injured by flying debris or hit an object outside the car.

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Small dogs might even fall out the vehicle if the window is open wide enough.

Tim Alcock from said: “We all love seeing our dogs enjoying the summer breeze with their heads hanging out the car window, but it actually poses some serious risks.

“Not only is it breaking the Highway Code and potentially distracting the driver, but your furry friend could get hurt by flying debris or, in a worst-case scenario, fall out of the car.

“It’s really crucial to keep pets properly restrained in the car. Think of it like a seatbelt for your dog.

“It’s easy to keep our pets safe in the car this summer. A pet harness, crate, or dog guard in the boot can make all the difference in preventing accidents and avoiding hefty fines.”