Help Your Dog Handle Car-Caused Anxiety

Labrador Dog in Car Sitting When we think of dogs riding in cars, we often have an image of a dog (especially labs) hanging out the passenger seats, tongue out with their tail wagging, right?

However, not all dogs are ready to embrace vehicles and many dogs suffer from car-caused anxiety that can be helped.

Many dogs get into the car, start whimpering, and are afraid to be near the window. But have no fear: there are tips available to help your dog in this situation.

Associate Cars with Happy Emotions

 Dogs base a lot of their reactions with associations. Dogs often see something, and it will remind them of a specific experience good or bad. The key with cars is to have the dog immediately think of the former; you want your dog to see the car, and think “Yes, that means fun!” So, to start, take your dog to the park in a car, or somewhere else they love: the beach, a dog run, or maybe a favorite hiking trail. That way, they’ll see the car and think “adventure.”

Reward Them for Riding

Like any other trick, it’s always good to give a treat. If your dog steps into the car, give them a nice, healthy treat for being brave. Once you get to where you’re going, give them another one. You’ll be surprised how quickly they’ll want to be in the car. Because the car means food!

Ask a Vet for Help

 If none of these options work, then your next safest bet is to ask your veterinarian for some advice. The doctor may be able to give you other options which include anxiety blankets or prescribed sedatives. It depends on how you want to move forward but having a professional opinion always helps.

Hopefully, soon enough, your dog will be ready to ride. Looking to add another passenger onto your family road trips? Contact Lankas Labs today!

Written by mlankaslabs