How to Prevent Car Sickness in Puppies
When your puppy is sick it can be an extremely upsetting experience for both of you. For most of us, our puppies are just like or children and all we want to do is make them feel better. There are some things you can do to help prevent car sickness or minimize its affects on your puppy. It's also possible that this is something your puppy will grow out of so at least there's some light at the end of the tunnel.
The first preventative measure you'll want to take is fasting your puppy. Withhold their food and water for 5-6 hours before your trip. If it's a long trip that may involve airplanes, you may want to fast them as many as 12 hours before the trip. You can also use a car seat or harness to help prevent them moving so much when you drive, and be continuous about your driving being sure to take turns slow and stop with long distances, this can also help to decrease the sick feeling that arises.
Puppy Training to Help Car Sickness
Car sickness is more common in younger puppies because their bodies are not fully developed and their balance feeling off is usually what's causing this reaction. But luckily there are some positive dog training techniques you can use to help your puppy have a better reaction. First and foremost, you want to do your very best to make the car an enjoyable place to be. Make sure your pup isn't only going in the car when they're going to the vet or groomer, this can cause negative associations to be formed.
Instead you'll want to do your best to create positive associations with the car by making it a fun place to be. You can bring special toys for the car, some light treats, or shower them with affection when they get inside. Take them on trips to places they'll enjoy like the pet store or the dog park. Also, be sure to make the car a calm and quiet place to be, this promote calmness from them. You can even bring along a shirt that smells like home for them or use a spray like adaptil which is meant to promote calm feelings.
When Nothing Seems to Help Your Puppy
If you've gone through all the previously mentioned suggestions and are still having struggles, then it's time to consult a veterinarian. They may possibly prescribe a medication that can help ease your dog's car sickness. It could be more physical than phycological or it could be a mixture of both. But either way, if you've already tried the previous steps with no success then it's best to contact your vet. The longer the issue goes on, the worse it can get. But remember some dogs may simply outgrow the issue around 1 year of age. Once the inner ear has fully developed some dogs will have a better sense of balance and therefore you'll see their car sickness disappear. Unfortunately, some dogs will have developed anxiety about the car at this point so it's important to also consult with a dog training company to ensure you're making the right choices for your pet!