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For others that love car rides, they can get excited and express happiness by pacing back and forth, frequently whining and barking. It makes car rides extremely difficult and, at some point, dangerous. Do not worry, as there are ways you can help calm your dog down and enjoy the car ride. Keep reading to find out more!
Prepare Your Dog And Teach Him To Love Your Car
Counter-conditioning and desensitization are the most effective techniques used for training your dog to stay calm on car rides. Counter conditioning is known as rewarding your pet with praise or food to encourage the desired action. Desensitization means introducing your pet to the car in a way that does not cause anxiety. Take baby steps and start by getting your dog in the car, turning the car on, then turning it off and getting out. Drive for short distances around the neighborhood and give treats to him every once in a while in the backseat. Check how your dog reacts and be patient with him. Try not to lecture him when he is overly excited, as he may be unable to pay attention to you, and this will only increase the uneasiness.
A study reveals that dogs catch their owner’s emotions. Dogs are quite sensitive to human emotions, and if you’re feeling stressed out, your dog may be feeling it too. If you have an overly eager dog in the car, it’s reasonable if you become agitated during the trip. Yelling can be your initial response to attempt to lower his excitement in the car. But the more you do this, the more you encourage your dog to get hyper. Talk calmly and in soft tones to control their emotions.
Provide Mental Stimulation
Because their minds are hypersensitive to the outside environment, dogs get overly stimulated in cars. Minimize visual contact by blackening your windows using special cling window films. Give him toys to focus his attention on and provide activities to help him be calm for the ride. Have some scented cotton balls in your car. According to a study, dogs exposed to lavender and chamomile spent more time relaxing and less time moving. You can try to crack a window open so they can focus on other smells, but some dogs get overstimulated by this, and it just increases the feeling of excitement. Your dog may also be extremely excited because that is his only exciting experience for the week. Engage your dog in activities like exercising to reduce excess energy.
Use A Crate
If your dog has access to the whole car, it can get distracting and dangerous. Your drives will be safer with a covered crate because they won’t be able to climb all over you. Choose a crate that has enough space for your dog, allowing him to stand up and turn around. Dogs get less anxious knowing that they are physically secure in a car and eventually learn to settle down.
Bring Emergency Supplies
Secure your dog by including a harness or strap for a safe ride. Bring their favorite snacks and interactive toys for when they get impatient. Just like children, dogs get on their best behavior when you give them their favorite toys. Although it might not work all the time, it keeps them in a good mood for some period of time.
Following all these, your dog will soon look forward to your car trips because the drive is delightful and the destinations are enjoyable. What other tips would you add to the list?