Traveling with dogs in cars
Traveling with dogs doesn't need to be stressful as long as you are prepared and your dog is comfortable when spending time in a car. There are many useful dog car accessories on the market that will help you and your dog to have a safer and more comfortable trip.
How to calm a dog in the car
|Have your dog's favorite treats in the car.|
Bring your dog's favorite chewing toy with you in the car and let him chew on it in the car. Do not start the car immediately - wait for the dog to calm down and relax as he is enjoying his treat. The first time you are introducing the dog to spending time in the car should be short and sweet. Let the dog explore the new environment, have his treat, praise his good behavior and take the dog out for a walk. The next time you bring the dog in the car, bring his favorite treat and as the dog is enjoying the treat, start the car without driving yet. The dog needs to get used to the new sound of the car starting. Once the dog is used to hearing the sound of a starting car, he is ready to learn to be a good passenger in a moving vehicle. When the dog is comfortable spending a few minutes in a started car, he is ready for the next step. Take the dog for a very short drive and praise his good behavior when this step is complete. Give him a treat and take him for a walk after the short drive. This approach can help to train your dog to be calm and relaxed during car trips. Be positive and relaxed so that your dog can pick up your energy and also feel confident that there's nothing to fear.
|Dog gets car sick|
Some dogs get car sick easily and here's how you can help:|
Try to not feed your dog half an hour before riding in the car as the motion can make him sick especially on a full stomach.
Make frequent stops and walk the dog.
Let the dog out for a short walk from the car every half an hour or so during long car trips. If you have a puppy - make even more frequent stops as puppies tend to have less control over their bodily functions.
Never leave your dog alone in a car.
The car's temperature can quickly rise, causing your dog to have a heatstroke. If he is not given immediate medical attention the dog may die.
Dog car accessories
Dog accessories for car help you and your pet to have a safer and more comfortable trip. The better prepared you are for the trip with your dog, the more you will enjoy it! Having a list of dog supplies you will need during your trip can really help. Dog food, dog carrier or traveling crate, dog bed, dog's leash and collar as well as his id tag in case he gets lost during the trip. Don't forget traveling dog bowls and of course his waste bags. Don't forget any dog medications that he needs and of course his canine toothpaste and toothbrush. If you are traveling somewhere where the weather will be cold, remember to bring your dog's coat to keep him warm. If your dog has a long coat, bringing his brush will help to manage shedding and prevent any mats from forming while you're traveling. Are you going away for a while? Then remember to also pack your dog's shampoo and conditioner. How about his chewing toys? Having a healthy dental treat or a chewing toy can help your dog to stay calm and busy during the trip. If he picks up any fleas or ticks during the trip, having flea and tick treatments on hand can save the day.
Dog car seat covers
Car seat covers for dogs make traveling with your dog so much easier during long and short road trips. Dog car seat covers are available in many different styles. Various designs including waterproof, machine washable and easy to vacuum. If you have a large or medium dog breed, look for a heavy duty car seat cover that will protect your car from scratches. These will keep the car seats dry and pet hair free. If your dog is prone to getting car sick, tends to throw up in the car, having a waterproof seat cover will be extremely useful for an easy clean up.
Dog car seat
If your dog is small sized, a pet car seat or bucket booster pet seat will keep your dog safe in the car. Portable Foldable Pet Car Seat Cover Carrier with Seat Belt for a small dog can be a great option if your pet weighs less than 25 pounds.
Dog travel crate
Dog crates come in different sizes. A crate should be big enough for the dog to stretch out freely, to stand full height and to easily turn around. A crate should not be too big either. Dogs should not wander around in a car for safety concerns and travel crates are the safest way to transport your pet. You can also use the dog crate in a pet friendly hotel or motel to prevent your dog from accidentally getting lost. If you need to leave the dog for some time in the hotel room, leaving the dog in a travel crate will save the dog and the room from any trouble. The hotel staff will also appreciate it if your dog is in a crate during room service. Some dogs may be intimidating for the staff and make it impossible to do the room service with the dog running around.
Dog travel kennel
Dog travel kennels can be a convenient way to transport your pet. Just like a travel crate, dog travel kennel will save your room and the dog from trouble if you need to spend time in a pet friendly hotel. You are also minimizing the chances of losing your pet who may accidentally escape from the hotel room during room service.
Dog carriers are especially useful for small dogs and help to carry the dog around. Look for Airline approved dog carriers if you are planning to fly with your small dog.
Dog car safety harness
A dog car harness helps to keep your pet safe when traveling in the car. Be sure to write your contact info on the harness in case the dog accidentally gets lost during the trip.
Dog travel bowl
Stainless steel travel bowl is a good option because stainless steel is not easily breakable and easy to clean. Plastic dog travel bowls are lighter in weight but may crack and the cracks can easily harbor bacteria. Some dogs are allergic to plastic.
Dog clean up and waste bags
Dog waste bags or dog poop bags are available in different colors and some varieties even come scented.
To keep your dog entertained during long road trips, take some of his favorite toys with you to keep your dog happy and relaxed during traveling. Just make sure to get a toy that is big enough to not pose accidental swallowing danger during the trip.
Flying with a dog
Flying with a dog has its pros and cons. While you might hear occasional stories in the news about dogs exposed to extreme temperatures or dogs that got loose in the cargo area, traveling by air with your dog is usually safe, and many people do it. People with large dogs often choose to travel with dogs by car instead, but sometimes air travel is necessary.
To travel by air, dogs must travel in the cargo area in their kennels, and you will have to pay an additional fee to travel with a dog, up to several hundred dollars. Only small dogs, cats, and other small animals can travel in the cabin with you. Crates must be approved by the airline, and airlines may have a limit on how many animals they will take per flight, so book your flight early and tell them in advance that you are bringing a dog. Every airline has different rules, so find out when you book your flight exactly what the crate requirements are and what kind of documentation you need. You might have to prove your dog is current on vaccinations, especially rabies, and you may have to have a health certificate from a vet.
When planning an overseas trip with your dog, contact the local consulate for quarantine regulations and health certification requirements. Investigate the airlines' regulations on pet carriage and consider the length of the itinerary. Will a change of plane or airline be required? How long will your dog's confinement last? How will he handle it? Take the same care for your dog's safety and comfort as you would with any member of your family.
Pet policy for all major airlines in the United States
If you are flying with your dog, be sure to check the airline's pet policy. Some airlines have dog breeds restrictions. American Airlines, for example, do not accept brachycephalic dogs as checked luggage. And breeds such as Shih Tzu, Pug, Bulldog and many others that feature a short muzzle fall into the restricted category. Also, check the kennel guidelines for carry-on dogs. Some airlines may have restrictions on how many dogs you can check in as well as the dog's age. American Airlines, for example do not accept puppies that are younger than 8 weeks old. There can be other restrictions that you may need to be aware of. Find the airline that you are planning to use in the list below and be sure to check their pet policy prior to booking the flight.
Road trip with dog checklist (dog travel essentials)
Whether hotels, campgrounds, or friends' houses, call ahead to confirm the places you will be staying allow dogs. Research dog-friendly lodging in advance.
Never let your dog stick his head out of a moving car window. At best, debris can fly into his eyes. At worst, another vehicle may injure or kill him.
Don't leave your dog in a parked car, even with the windows open. A car heats up like a greenhouse and can rapidly cause a heatstroke. Open car windows do not provide enough ventilation to compensate for hot temperatures. Even on a day when temperature is mild and pleasant, the car interior can heat up to a dangerous level.
Always clean up after your dog.
Dog travel essentials include the dog's leash, collar, and identification tags. Keep tags on at all times, and be sure the identification info is always complete and accurate, including area code.
Bring dog food and water bowls, and a supply of your dog's regular food, and a few jugs of the same water you normally give your dog (out of tap, for example).
Chew toys and other comforting items in your dog's crate will help him feel more secure. Of course, don't forget the crate.
Dogs are creatures of habit, and some dogs can get very stressed by changes in routine. Stay alert and aware of how your dog is doing. If he gets scared and needs reassurance, or is getting hyperactive, be ready to take control before the behavior gets out of hand.
Bring the dog's brush along, especially if your dog's coat gets mats and tangles easily.
Bring an emergency first-aid kit including bandages, disinfectant, antibiotic cream, steroid cream, Benadryl, any medications your dog requires, grooming equipment, a blanket, and anything else your vet recommends. Also include a card with your vet's name, address, and phone number (these things are easy to forget when you are flustered), and the number of a 24-hour emergency clinic. Also, ask your vet ahead of time for any dosing information, just in case. For example, if your dog gets an allergic reaction, how much Benadryl should he take?
Tips for traveling with a dog - video
Other dog supplies
Indoor dog potty solutions
Crates for dogs
Best dog food for dogs of all ages