In this day and age, traveling with your dog is unavoidable. Whether it’s taking your new pup on a road trip home, driving across country to move into a new house, or just heading to the veterinarian, your furry friend is along for the ride. We know that some dogs are better at traveling in cars than others. So, no matter if your dog is a seasoned traveler or new explorer, we have put together a list of tips for taking car rides with your pooch.
Use the right equipment
Car safety is the most important thing when traveling with your pup. Just like us humans have to wear seat belts, dogs need to be strapped in too. The American Kennel Club suggests using a crate, seat belt, or harness to keep your dog safe in the car.
Practice makes perfect
Train your dog to be excited about car rides! You can do this by taking frequent cruises with your pup to get them used to being in the car. The AKC recommends taking them on fun outings to the dog park or beach, so they don’t associate car rides with going to the vet. This will reduce your dog’s nerves when you take a longer road trip.
Take breaks on a pet-friendly route
Plan your trip accordingly so there are frequent rest stops where your pup can go to the bathroom. US News writes that you should stop every 2-3 hours on a road trip to give your dog a break and let them use the bathroom if they wish.
Keep Fido entertained
Many dogs are accustomed to barking at other cars on the road when riding in the car. According to the AKC, to prevent your dog from barking in the car you should keep them distracted. Give your furry friend something to chew on like a bone or a chew toy to keep them occupied.
Don’t leave your pup in the car
Be cautious of leaving your dog in the car on extremely hot or cold days. According to US News, it is only safe to leave your pup in the car for short periods of time on mild days or when you’re in a cool, covered parking lot.
Get out your dog’s extra energy
Before embarking on a road trip, go outside and let your dog burn off some of his/her energy. Chewy recommends this in order to ensure that your dog will be more rested during a long car ride, and maybe even sleep!
Bring the right supplies
There’s nothing worse than being unprepared for a trip, so make sure you bring all of the essentials plus backup supplies. The necessities include paper towels, poop bags, a bowl, water, treats, pet stain remover, and your dog’s car safety equipment. If your dog is an anxious traveler, Chewy suggests packing a Thundershirt which works as a natural anxiety reducer.