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Taking Your Dog on a Long Drive: Essential Tips

Finally, the holidays! Whether you’re going on an adventurous drive or heading to your vacation home, you’ll naturally want to take your four-legged friend along. Some dogs love car rides, while others turn up their noses, or they get carsick. Follow the tips below, and your dog will be fresh, healthy, and enthusiastic when you arrive at your destination!

Before Departure

Get Your Dog Used to the Car

You and your fluffy ball of energy should schedule some car habituation sessions first. Don’t force it, but work on it in small steps. Does your pet show a feeling of fear in the car? Then get out and try again later. It may also be helpful to let the dog sit in the back seat or trunk while the car is parked in the driveway to familiarize him with the car. After a while, the dog will be at ease? Next, start the engine.

Make Sure You Don’t Forget Anything

Spending a vacation with your dog requires extra care in preparing for the trip and packing your belongings. Nothing can be worse than realizing you forgot an essential item during your trip. With a checklist, you can never go wrong. Be sure to also check the specific rules regarding dogs in the country you are traveling to. Some countries require muzzles, and unfortunately, not all breeds are welcome everywhere.

Let Your Dog Out First

It is always advisable to take your dog for a walk before a long car trip. Otherwise, they will want to go to the bathroom again before entering the highway. A calm travel companion is a happy travel companion!

Drive on Shorter Routes First

Do you have a dog that spontaneously jumps into the car just to go to the grocery store once a week? Then a longer trip should be possible. However, if it’s the contrary, then you might want to practice a slightly shorter car ride before taking the 10-hour trip. To begin with, let’s go to the other side of the country and see how your dog behaves. Good preparation takes a little time, but it will save you a lot of trouble during your vacation.

The Complete Guide to Traveling With Your Dog – American Kennel Club

Avoid Overheating

When you go on holiday to a tropical country, the heat in your car can quickly rise. This is especially true if you get stuck in traffic along the way. Your dog has difficulty letting heat escape, so you should consider how hot you feel and add a few extra degrees. Therefore, it is best to plan your trip so that you do not have to ride in the car during the hottest part of the day.

If your car has air conditioning, turn it on so that it is not too cold (18-20°C is ideal). Or, lay your dog on a cooling mat. Don’t have one? Keep a few ice packs wrapped in bath towels to prevent overheating.

Opening the windows to provide necessary ventilation is also a good idea. However, it is best to keep your dog from hanging his head out of an open car window to cool himself. First, letting your four-legged friend loose in the car can be dangerous, but it can also lead to eye and respiratory infections. Not an appropriate way to start the holiday!

Never leave your dog alone in the car when you go to the gas station to fill up. Cars, especially those parked in the sun, get hot quickly and can cause your dog’s body temperature to spike. In just five minutes, your dog can be irreparably damaged. Always take your dog along.

Let us know if these few tips have helped you in the comments below!

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