dog car anxiety

How to Alleviate Dog Car Anxiety

Many dogs love to ride in cars, as well as travel long distances with their owners. On the other hand, car rides can be a traumatic experience for many dogs as well as their owners.

If your dog has car anxiety, it doesn’t mean that the situation will never change, on the contrary, in this article, you will read great tips that, if used regularly, would help your dog overcome stress!

Dog car anxiety – why your dog doesn’t want to ride in a car ?

There are a number of potential causes for your dog to feel uncomfortable while in your car, so you need to identify where this discomfort is coming from. Most of the time, the refusal to ride in a car can be due to emotional reasons, which you may not be aware of.

For example, if you have adopted a dog and it already had a previous family, then the perception of traveling in a car can be stressful due to the fact that the dog thinks you’ll abandon it too. Some animals, on the other hand, have been abandoned several times, which from the very beginning will require you to make a greater effort to regain their trust, and battle their fear of car riding.

The next reason may be related to the discomfort, or car sickness they could feel, similar to what some humans feel while traveling. After all, not every living organism reacts the same to long journeys and driving through curves.

How to overcome dog car anxiety ?

Once you have spent enough time analyzing the potential reasons why your dog refuses to travel, the next step would be to work on overcoming the problems.

Be sure not to rush anything and follow the tips listed below, to finally eliminate your pet’s traveling fear and discomfort.

Use the seat belt

The main purpose of the seat belt is to protect the driver as well as the occupants of the vehicle, and given the fact that your dogs are also passengers, the use of the seat belt can offer several benefits.

Namely, while driving, the dog can be quite hyperactive, and constantly move inside the vehicle. This is mostly happening due to the dog’s curiosity. Dogs want to observe everything that happens in the environment around them, but this behavior can have a really negative impact when traveling.

So with the seat belt on, the position in which they have limited movement can prove to be crucial to improving the overall driving experience.

At the same time, travel difficulties in dogs are manifested through lethargic behavior, squealing, vomiting, constant yawning, etc., so, if you notice any of these indicators, then try to put the seat belt on your dog and see if it makes any changes.

Occasionally, drive your dog to their favorite destinations

Our dogs, often relate travel with traumatic experiences (for them), such as vet visits, etc., but there are some great solutions to help your dogs deal with this fear.

In the next few trips, try to reward your dog with some snack when it gets in the car, and then, take it to its favorite place, such as the park. A few of these trips and the dog will stop associating the traveling experience with a potential visit to the vet.

Gradually get your dog used to car rides

One of the biggest mistakes that many owners make is that they don’t pay enough attention to their pet’s feelings, but on the contrary, despite the dog’s grievance, they still decide to travel by a car. There are many ways to accustom and train your dog to better handle car travel.

For example, you can occasionally make a break, take your dog to a mini-walk, and then, put it back in the car and continue the journey. This way, you will train your dog to better deal with the environment inside the vehicle, and this will surely benefit both you and your pet.

Create a comfortable environment for your dogs

You don’t have to start driving the car right away, instead let it run for a while, and while the vehicle is running, pet your dog, or give it a piece of its favorite food or snack. You can also bring your dog’s favorite toy to make them feel more comfortable and relaxed. In a few minutes, when the dog has calmed down you can start driving towards your destination.

In the long run, the dog will overcome its whole psychological barrier with fewer problems.

Lastly, remember that the most important thing is the persistence and continuous work with your dog. Don’t be pushy and try to solve this problem in a day or two. Be moderate, put the above tips into practice, and it will help both you and your dog to better deal with the repulsion of car traveling!

Leave a Reply