Top Tips for Successful Puppy Car Travel

Well it’s a daily reality for most of us that we need to travel by car to get to our places of desire. This reality is one you will want your adult dog to accept. The car travel is part of modern life, be it for daily drop off to doggie day care, a weekly visit to the park with the family, a long journey on a staycation (holiday in your own country) or those important visits to the vets.

So we know that getting puppy to accept the car travel as part of his life is soooo important, we need to make sure we make it a priority for one of the many positive experiences Puppy needs to have.

If Puppy doesn’t learn to accept this mode of travel you could find your journeys result in a dog that barks, jumps around, chews, drools or throws up. Which may lead to you thinking the best option is to leave the dog at home rather than accompanying you and the family.

Therefore, make sure you start as you mean to go on, that first journey of picking Puppy up from the breeder has to go as positively as possible. Here are some tops tips to help you with that.

Top tips for a successful first journey

  • When collecting Puppy and it’s the puppy’s first experience in a car, make sure you introduce the environment slowly and calmly.
  • Place Puppy in a secure place, with soft, non-slip, absorbent bedding for the journey.
  • Be mindful to be calm and talk softly, no slamming of doors either, and don’t start engine until everyone's inside and secure.
  • Always drive extra carefully when you have a dog on board, but for this first journey take that extra care and consideration.
  • If you can, assess your route and ensure there's plenty of opportunity to take breaks and offer the puppy water (a little break and a treat when returning to the car will help ensure positive association with the journey and car).
  • If children are coming to pick Puppy up, make sure they too are calm around Puppy - no shrieking or loud noises for this sensitive time.

Puppy in car

If a dog crate in the car isn’t an option for you, please invest in a dog harness to ensure the puppy is secure at all times and can’t be a risk when you’re travelling.

Once Puppy is home and settled, try your best to take Puppy out every day on short trips, making it a positive experience each time. This way Puppy will soon get used to the car travel and accept it as a necessary part of life.

The key for successful car travel is to remember that each experience needs to be a positive one, with plenty of rewards for desirable behaviour and allowing the puppy to accept that all is ok.

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