Training Your Dog To Love The Car

Going in a car should mean adventure, togetherness and fun! For some dogs however the rides make them sick or uneasy. To help your dog over these “road blocks” to travel here are some things to keep in mind.

Some dogs have issues with motion sickness. The rocking of the car paired with their distressed pacing or other movement further exacerbates this condition, leading to vomiting or excessive drooling. Many dogs resist travel due to the stress of the car ride.

* Decorate a space in your car for you dog. Place bedding, chewies and toys there. If your dog paces, secure a seat belt lead or consider using a crate to keep your dog in one place while you drive.

* Make the car a fun destination for treats, rewards and attention: even when you’re not going anywhere! Stop off and sit in the car while you read your mail, talk on the phone, or eat a snack. Say “Car” and point to it when you go and reward your dog when you arrive.

* Test out different areas of the car to see if one is preferable. On the floor of the front seat, behind you in the drive-side passenger seat or secured in an emptied, well-ventilated cargo space using a rear gate or station lead secured to a dog’s harness.

* Put on some soothing music, leave a favorite chew/toy and drive carefully—avoiding sharp turns and potholes. Try to make short trip to fun destinations!

* If you’re planning a long trip speak to your veterinarian about prescribing something to sooth your dog for the trip.

For more tips on social excursions and car travel safety get Sarah’s book titled: “Miss. Sarah’s Etiquette Guide for Dogs and People.”