Five Ways To Keep Your Dogs Calm In The Car

Travelling in a car can be stressful for dogs, but there are a few simple ways we can help reduce their anxiety…

Show them your Vehicle

Vehicles can be strange and intimidating things for dogs. Especially given the vibrations and noises they can create. Before travelling with a canine companion, introduce them to your car. Walk them around it, sit inside with them for a little while – so that they can take in the sights and smells.

Doing this will make the interior of your car less of an alien environment for your pet; hopefully relaxing them a bit more when it comes to an actual journey.

Start with Short Journeys

If your dog isn’t used to travelling in a car, it makes sense to ease them into it with shorter journeys. It might be a short drive to a local park, or to see a friend. If you have an opportunity to drive them somewhere nearby, utilise it.

This will help your four-legged friend(s) get used to being in a vehicle, and all of the sensory input that comes with being out on the road; but with reduced risk of any incidents.

Keep things Familiar

Most dogs enjoy the familiar, enjoying scents and sounds that they’re already accustomed to. By travelling with your dog’s blanket, toys and favourite treats, you’re providing them with a sense of consistency and security; which can help mitigate the stress of travelling in an unusual environment.

Secure them Properly

The last thing your dog wants is to be thrown around in the back of your car. Think about it, would you enjoy being thrown against the interior of your vehicle every time a turn was taken or the brakes were applied? Use a cage or harness suitable for your dog’s size and ensure that he or she is comfortable in it. If they’re stable and secure, they’ll be happier for it.

You should also use a guard rail to separate your car’s boot from the rest of the interior.

Regular Breaks 

Dogs can be effective communicators, but they can’t ask ‘are we there yet?’. If you’re travelling a significant distance, you’ll need to take regular breaks so that they can decompress, do their business and stretch their legs. Use breaks to keep them properly hydrated and to provide some food when required; just avoid anything too heavy or fatty, as such foods can contribute to nausea.

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