Many dogs love to ride in the car. You see them often with their noses to the wind and a happy doggy grin on their face. So you know dogs can enjoy a car ride but perhaps you are not sure how to get your dog to enjoy it too. Whether you have a puppy or an older dog, here are a few tips to help help your dog enjoy the car ride.
First, you need to consider using a pet auto safety device such as a pet car seat, dog seat belt, or pet carrier. If you use a pet auto safety device for your pet, you need to allow your pet time to get used to it. If you are using a pet car seat, for example, allow your pet to use as a bed for a short time before putting it in the car. If you are using a dog seat belt, put the safety harness on the dog (without the buckle strap attached) and allow them to wear it around the house (with supervision). If you are using a crate, crate train your pet first.
Tip #1 – To Help to Prevent Vomiting or Voiding in the Car
* Do not give them anything to eat for an hour or two before the ride.
* Don’t allow them to drink excessively.
* Allow your dog to take a potty break just before going for a ride.
Tip #2 – Take Short Fun Trips
Once your dog is used to the pet auto safety device, start taking them somewhere they will enjoy. This will help them learn to associate a car ride with these special places.
* Go to the park.
* Visit the pet store.
* Take your pet with you to visit a friend.
* Take your pet with you when you are only going to a drive-through such as at a bank or fast-food place.
* Go to a coffee shop or restaurant where you can sit outside.
Never take your dog someplace where you will have to leave them unattended in the car. The inside of a car is not safe for a pet, even if it is not hot outside or the windows are rolled down. Not only are there dangers, but it could also cause your pet to get lonely, anxious, or nervous. If your dog already fears a car ride, leaving them alone in it is not going to help.
Tip #3 - Distract Your Pet
* Give your dog a familiar object like their favorite toy or blanket.
* Talk to your dog while you drive, but don’t use a soothing voice. Talking to them in a soothing voice may confirm their thinking that the car ride is a bad thing. Use a regular tone of voice and talk as if nothing is wrong. However, every dog is different. Some dogs may get more excited by the sound of your voice, in which case you should ignore them. Try both talking and silence to see which works best for your pet. Try not to scold your pet. Positive reinforcement is the best way to make a car ride enjoyable. Do not let your talking to the dog distract you from your driving. It is also recommended that you do not pet them while you drive. Not only can this distract you from the road, it may also encourage the dog to pester you for more attention.
* Try playing the radio for your pet. Soothing music may have a calming effect on some pets. But most importantly, the sound of music will help cover the loud and unfamiliar sounds of the road. A passing semi, for example, may be a familiar sound to us, but the rumbling of these big trucks can be terrifying for a dog who has never heard them before.
* Open a window. Even if the loud sounds of the road are a problem for your pet an open window may provide a distraction of new and interesting smells for your dog. Most dogs seem to love this aspect of car rides. Your dog should not be able to stick their head out the window while using a restraint, but they should still be able to catch those exciting scents.
* If possible, have someone sit in the back seat with your dog. They can provide a distraction that you, as the driver, can not. This person, however, should not use a soothing voice and comforting manner. Remember, you want your dog to think that riding in the car is no big deal.
Does your dog like to try to join you in in the front seat of your car when you drive? Does your dog try to lick you or sniff you while you are driving? Dogs moving around freely in cars can be a serious a safety hazard to themselves, the driver, and the passengers. A pet car barrier keeps everyone safe by creating a strong wall between the front and back seats of the car. This wall keeps the dog safely in the backseat. The main benefits for keeping your dog in the back seat include:
* Should the car stop suddenly, the dog might be kept from flying forward into the front seat or out the front windshield.
* Helps restrict excited pups from distracting the driver by moving between the front and back seats of the vehicle.
* Should an accident occur, your dog will likely remain in the back seat and away from airbags. (Airbags can kill rather than save your pet.)
Being safe in the car is of utmost importance for you and your loved ones. New parents comb through products looking for the next big improvement to protect their children. There are hundreds of child protective seats available that are designed for children of varying ages which help reduce the impact of any car accident.
It goes to reason that this same product should be available for dogs which obviously cannot be secured in a safety device designed for human use. Having a special seat that can protect your dog is imperative for those that care about the safety of their most beloved pets. Dog car seats are an incredible innovation.
Like a cell phone, a dog can be a major distraction in the car. A phone call that distracts a driver has been statistically proven to cause car accidents and create cars of people more prone to injury and death. This can be said for an unruly dog in the vehicle. Even the best trained dogs can be excited in a car where anything can happen. A loud noise or an interesting dog walking down the street could be enough to send a calm dog into a fit. Avoid putting yourself and your dog in harms way by getting an inexpensive dog safety belt today.
Even though I only live four hours from St. Louis, I have never been there. So I made plans to visit this 4th of July weekend. The first thing I had to do was decide whether or not I was going to take the dogs. I considered a boarding kennel, a pet sitter, or leaving my dogs with a friend. But because it was a holiday weekend, these options were going to be hard to come by. So I decided to take them with me. Once this was determined, I needed to find a hotel that would allow my pets. After some research online at www.PetsWelcome.com, I found that the Sheraton generally accepts pets.
Once the hotel was booked, the next thing was to prepare for the trip. I had to not only pack for myself, but for the dogs as well. I packed their food bowls, water bowls, leashes, food, doggy biscuits, doggy poopie bags, crates, dog beds, and most importantly, extra water. I made sure they were in good health (both just had check-ups at the vet a couple weeks ago), that their tags were secure on their collars and up to date, and that my car was prepared for them. The back seat of my car has a car seat cover and I added the Kurgo Backseat Bridge which would give them extra room and keep them off the floor. My dogs wore their pet auto safety belts. The strap which buckles into the seat belt receptacle of the car was extended a little so that they had more room to move around but were still safe and secure.
On the way to St. Louis, we stopped at the rest stops along the way. There were three of them, each about 40-60 miles apart. Every interstate highway in the US has rest stops. I made sure the dogs only did their business in the pet area since the rest stops had a place designated specifically for pets. And I made sure I picked up after them. I also gave them water at each stop. Both dogs did great. No one got car sick. Maya was bored and tended to move around a lot, but because of her pet seat belt and the Extend-A-Seat, she was not able to bother me while I drove.
At the Destination
Both dogs were well-behaved at the hotel as well. Maya was a little hyper and wanted to greet everyone but I kept a hold of her leash and made sure she did not jump on or lick anyone. When I left the hotel and had to leave them behind, I kept them in their crates as required by hotel policy. I did not get any reports about them so I assume that they did not bark after I left. I did not always leave the dogs in the hotel when visiting St. Louis. I took them walking even went to a couple of nearby parks.
All-in-all it was a great trip. We all had a good time and we all kept safe. You and your pets can have a safe and pleasant time traveling as well. Just remember the four basics: Accommodation, Preparation, Travel, and Destination.
If your vehicle has passenger side airbags that can not be deactivated, then your dog should not be sitting in the front seat. This is true even if your dog is wearing a pet car safety harness or is in a pet safety travel seat. There is a warning in your vehicle manual and sometimes even on the visor that states no children under a certain age and no children in car seats are to be in the front seat. The vehicle manual generally does not state anything about pets but the same applies. This is because airbags are designed to protect adults and rather than save your pet, an airbag may end up seriously harming or possibly killing your pet instead.
So before allowing your dog to sit in the front seat, make certain that the front passenger side of your vehicle does not have airbags or that those airbags are turned off. And make sure that your dog is wearing a pet car safety harness or is secured to a pet safety travel seat.
We have just recently come across a great car seat for dogs. It’s the Travelin’ Dog Pet Seat made by The Good Pet Stuff Company (a division of Aquiline Innovations Corp). This is a company located in California where the strictest pet auto safety laws in the country are being implemented. The Travelin’ Dog Pet Seat follows all the guidelines being set forth in a soon to be passed California bill that will require all dogs in the car to be safely restrained.
The Travelin’ Dog Pet Car Seat features a heavy-duty strap hook which provides quick and easy hook-up to your pet’s harness. It fastens securely with your car’s own seat belt for a secure ride. The back 1 ½” strong wide straps provide support in sudden stops and the 1” side straps keep your pet from being thrown sideways. The seat belt passes through the plastic body of the peat seat, similar to an infant car seat, for a secure ride. A dependable anchor strap fastens through three openings to provide a strong anchor and the seat plastic is ribbed and reinforced. The hinged platform covers the storage space and allows easy access to the seat belt pass-through. The pet seat is shaped like a pet bed to provide comfort. It is semi-oval/square shaped approximately 18” wide and 17” long. Pets can ride 6″ above the seat with the legs folded under or at a 10″ height when the legs are extended. It can also be used outside of the automobile (in the home, hotel, etc.) as a pet bed when the legs are folded and in an up position. A thick foam and fleece seat padding provides your pet a comfortable and attractive riding surface with side padding for additional comfort. It has space under the riding platform which can be used to store your pet’s travel gear.Includes removable travel bowl with lid for food and water on the go. This car seat is best for small to medium sized dogs of up to 35 pounds.
Have you noticed doggy nose prints and slimy dog drool on your car windows and door panels? Not only is it disgusting, but the doggy drool can permanently damage your precious car interior if it is not cleaned on a regular basis. And while drool may not damage the windows, it sure is difficult to clean. There is a solution out there for those of us who like to travel with our pets but don’t like the damage done to our car.
Introducing a new product from Kurgo. The Kurgo car door guards protect your vehicle door panels from scratches, muddy paw prints, dog drool, pet hair, etc. If your dog likes to ride, this product is perfect for keeping the door panels of your car interior in new condition.
Janice from Cedar Falls, Iowa loves them. “It is so much easier to remove the bibs and car seat cover off to clean them. And when I do, the inside of my car still looks and smells brand new.”
Jacob from Grand Rapids, Minnesota says, “My dog Zeus is a drooler. He loves to ride in the car but when he does, slobber gets everywhere. The car seat cover protected the seat but I had nothing to protect the doors until I found the door bib. It doesn’t stop Zeus from drooling but now I feel much better about letting him ride in my new car.”
Best for small and medium sized dogs, a pet car seat is the perfect way to pamper your dog AND help keep them safe. We love to take our dogs with us when we travel, but sometimes the seat of the car just isn’t comfortable. The dogs tend to lose their balance when we make those turns or make those stops. The seat belt works great for helping to keep the dogs from being thrown on the floor, but the car seat adds comfort. And comfort is great if you are taking a long road trip for summer vacation.Most car seats are plushly padded and some even provide a boost so the dogs can still look out the window. A good pet car seat should somehow attach to the seat of a car. Some will hang right over the front passenger seat. (But be sure that the airbags for the passenger side is turned off before you use a pet car seat in the front seat. Air bags are safe for adult people only.) The best pet car seats have a connecting strap where one end clips onto your pet’s harness and the other somehow utilizes the car’s seat belt.
Before you travel in the car with your dog this summer, the most important thing you should do is consult your dog’s veterinarian to make sure your dog is healthy enough to go on a road trip. It is very important to take any health problems your dog may have into account and make sure the trip will not aggravate these health issues. You will also want to consider your dog’s temperament. A dog with a nervous tendency, for example, may not enjoy a long ride in the car. Health problems can occur if a nervous dog is exposed to stress for a long period. If you are unsure how your dog will handle a car ride, take him with you on several small local trips, such as to the park or the pet store. This will not only get them used to a car ride but it will also help them associate it with something fun. Just remember to use a dog seat belt and don’t leave your dog alone in the car.
If the road trip requires overnight stops, check with the hotels or motels you will be staying at to make sure that your dog is welcome. Be sure you pack all the necessary items your dog will need such as food and water, leashes, comfortable bedding, medication, and a first-aid kit. Also be sure to carry your vet’s information with you and see if they can provide you with a 24 hour emergency number. You will also want to make sure your dog is wearing his ID tags and that the information on the tags is legible. Carry a photo of your dog for in case your he gets loose and lost.