Many dogs love car travel, but for some dogs it can be quite stressful. Any of these signs is a good clue your dog isn't keen to travel:
- Excessive salivation
- Urinating / soiling
- Attempting to escape
Obviously if your dog is showing any of these signs, car journeys can be nightmare for both of you! Fortunately, there are lots of things you can do to help your dog cope with car travel!
Use Adaptil Spray* on the blanket or crate used in the vehicle. REMEMBER to wait 15 minutes before putting the dog in the car once you have sprayed to allow the alcohol in the spray to evaporate.
Teach your dog to sit calmly in the vehicle while the car is stationary.
Use treats with quiet praise and calm play to get your dog to associate the vehicle with good things.
Keep sessions short, allow the dog to become comfortable with the vehicle before proceeding to the next step.
Encourage the dog to get into the vehicle with the engine running, using treats and praise.
Once your dog is happy and calm in the vehicle, start taking them on short trips.
If your dog does not travel in a crate, consider using a leash or a harness to attach to the vehicle seat belt, to restrain your dog and keep everyone safe.
On the day of travel, only feed a light meal, but do not limit water.
Keep the vehicle well ventilated and never leave your dog unattended in the car.
Allow your dog to exercise and eliminate every 2 hours. For long journeys (more than 4-5 hours), take this opportunity to re-apply Adaptil Spray.
The use of an Adaptil Collar or Adaptil Spray has been clinically proven to help reduce the signs of travel related stress in dogs, and teaches dogs that vehicle travel can be a positive experience.
*Take time to consider if an Adaptil Collar would be more appropriate. If the journey is longer than 4-5 hours and/or the destination is new (e.g. going on holiday, moving house etc.) the Adaptil Collar may be more suitable, releasing a constant stream of the pheromone and helping the dog remain relaxed for up to 4 weeks.