Despite the dangers involved, the Maryland State Senate want to make sure dogs have the freedom to ride however their people see fit. They voted 30-17 against a bill that would make it illegal for dogs to ride in truck beds without restraints, such as harnesses or cages. Senators who voted against the bill reasoned that it would make dogs unhappy and cause an unnecessary divide between rural and urban areas.
The bill, introduced by Sen. Norman Stone Jr. and Delegate Kevin Kelly, would have placed misdemeanor charges on violators. Kelly helped draft the bill after witnessing an accident involving a dog falling out of a truck bed.
Many states have passed laws banning dogs from truck beds, including California, New Hampshire, Washington, Maine, and Florida. The Humane Society of the United States suggests crating or harnessing dogs in the truck’s cab or keeping them behind the seats and away from the windshield if the truck has an extended cab.