Planning a road trip with dog? Even the most enthusiastic traveler can become agitated and anxious on a very long ride. Here are some suggestions for making car travel safe and pleasant for you and your dog:
* Watch the temperature. Even with the air conditioning on, a dog riding in the back of a van can become overheated from direct sunlight shining into the vehicle. Sun shades will reflect heat and keep your traveling companion cool. And small battery-operated fans attached to the dog’s crate will keep the air moving.
* Remember to never leave your dog in a closed car with the windows rolled up. It can take just minutes for the temperature to rise enough to kill an animal.
* Help your dog relax. If your dog becomes anxious, a calming product, like hemp calming aids, may help relieve his or her fear, nervousness and aggression. Made from natural ingredients, the calming aids, cause no adverse side effects and meets all Food and Drug Administration guidelines for good manufacturing practices.
Avoid tranquilizers, which can lower the animal’s blood pressure and make the dog more prone to heat-related medical emergencies.
* Keep the dog contained. Your travel companion should either be in a crate or restrained by a seatbelt made especially for animals. Dogs riding unrestrained in a car can be dangerous to themselves, the humans riding with them and other motorists.
* Make two tags: one with your home address and another with the destination address in case the dog gets lost while on the road. You should also have your dog’s rabies tag, certificate and medical records.
* Pack a doggie bag. Your dog will appreciate some familiar things from home – a favorite blanket, for instance, treats and some toys. Bringing drinking water and food from home will help avoid an upset stomach. Don’t forget the cleanup supplies, because accidents happen.
* If your dog is territorial and you spend a night in a motel, keep the curtains drawn so the dog won’t feel the need to protect his new turf from everyone who walks by your windows. You can also use an anti bark collar to aid you in this direction.
* Have fun! A trip together can be a wonderful bonding experience for you and your dog.