Riding inside a car is no big deal for us, but for dogs, it can be an entirely different story.
Previously, we looked at the reasons why some dogs become anxious and uncomfortable when asked to ride in cars. We learned that the reasons can be both psychological as well as physical.
This time around, we’re going to turn our attention to the dog training tips you can use to make the car ride as comfortable as possible for your pet.
Environment Inside Car
The car interior can appear scary to a dog because it looks so unfamiliar. It’s your job to let your dog know that there’s absolutely no reason to be afraid.
To accomplish that, you can start by having your dog rest inside his/her crate while inside the car, according to VetStreet. Make sure that the crate you’ll be using is very comfortable. Place a pillow inside the crate or even your dog’s favorite toy.
You can also feed your dog some treats while he/she is in the crate to help him/her relax even more.
Take Your Dog to Fun Locations
Adopted dogs may have learned to associate car trips with visits to the vet or stays at the shelter. It’s easy to understand why they may be afraid of putting one paw inside a car again if they still remember those earlier experiences.
So, how should you address that problem? The obvious solution is to show them that car trips can lead to good things.
Even if it’s a short trip, bring your dog to the park using your car. You can also use your car to take your dog to the beach.
As your dog associates more happy memories with car trips, he/she will be able to understand that there’s no need to be scared of going somewhere by riding inside a car with you.
Address the Motion Sickness
Even if your dog suffers from motion sickness, there are still things you can do to make car trips possible.
The American Kennel Club recommends talking to a veterinarian and possibly securing some medication for your dog. You can also go for a walk with your dog prior to the trip to make relaxing even easier for him/her.
Sometimes, opening up a window can help people relax more during car trips. You can do the same thing for your dog if he/she is looking a little worn down.
Dogs don’t just have to live with their fear of cars. As their trusted human companion, you can show them that the car is nothing to fear, especially when you are around to protect them.
If you want to properly prepare your dog for an upcoming car ride, TAILored Pet Services can provide some assistance. We can take your dog on a “field trip” rather than a walk around the neighborhood. Learn more about the other ways we can help your dog by calling us at 425-923-7791 or browse our website.