Dogs at polling stations became a massive hit on Thursday June 8 but if you drove with your pet to vote you could have been handed a huge fine.

As EssexLive reported, almost all dog owners probably drive with their beloved pet in the car beside them at least once a week.

But did you know that if your dog isn't restrained properly in the car whilst you are at the wheel you run the risk of landing yourself a big fine?

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Dogs pictured outside Surrey polling stations during the 2017 General Election
Dogs pictured outside Surrey polling stations during the 2017 General Election

By taking unrestrained pets in the car drivers are putting themselves at risk of potentially deadly distractions, The Sun reports.

Rule 57 of the Highway Code states: "When in a vehicle make sure dogs or other animals are suitably restrained so they cannot distract you while you are driving or injure you, or themselves, if you stop quickly."

While breaking the Highway Code doesn't carry a direct penalty, drivers could still be pulled over for driving without due care and attention.

This can result in a maximum fine of £2,500 and nine penalty points.

Should the breach of the Highway Code be extreme, then a compulsory ban and re-test could be enforced.

In the event an unrestrained pet has caused an accident, then an insurer is likely to refuse to pay out.

What you should do when driving with pets

1. Don't allow your pet to ride with its head hanging out of the window, as it's potentially dangerous and can cause injury.

2. Always carry a large water bottle (5 litres minimum) in case your pet overheats and needs to be rapidly cooled in an emergency.

3. Use sun shades on the windows when it is hot or the sun is bright and never leave a pet in a hot car.

4. Don't feed your pet within two hours of starting a long car journey to avoid carsickness.

5. Pack a favourite toy or blanket to give your pet a sense of familiarity.

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