Car Travel for Dogs - make every trip a happy one

For humans a car ride is a matter of routine. But for your dog it can be an uncomfortable, even frightening ordeal. Follow these tips and, to your dog, a ride in the car will be more like a walk in the park.

  • Spend time in the car with your dog when it’s not moving. Give him lots of praise and affection so he sees the car as a happy place.
  • Drive him to fun places (his favourite park, play area). If he only ever goes to the vet, he’ll be reluctant to get into your car!
  • Your dog should always travel in the back, secured in an approved travel box, dog car seat or harness. Make sure he can stand, lie down and turn around. Your pet should never travel on the driver’s or passenger’s lap or be allowed to sit in the foot-well where the pedals are.
  • Providing a familiar blanket and/or safe toy can help make your dog more comfortable during the trip.
  • Never let your dog ride with his head outside the window. Dirt and other debris can enter his eyes, ears and nose and cause injury or infection.
  • Make sure you feed him three to four hours before the trip – and just a light meal or he may get sick.
  • If your dog does gets car sick, talk to your veterinarian about alternate traveling suggestions or medications to keep them comfortable.
  • Carry a bowl and bottles of tap water to stop your dog becoming dehydrated.
  • Don’t leave your dog on his own in the car – even if it’s only for a short time. On a warm day, 210C, the temperature inside the car can rise to 310C in only 10 minutes. He could quickly overheat – with tragic results.
  • Build in regular toilet stops (every 2-3 hours) and always make sure your dog is on a lead before letting him out of the car.

Here’s wishing you and your dog happy travels together!