Overcoming Motion Sickness in Dogs

For many pet owners, bringing the family dog along for a ride in the car is a great bonding experience for everyone involved. But for those with dogs that suffer from motion sickness, this simple activity can seem downright impossible. The good news is there are some things that you can do to help your canine companion overcome this condition. Here is some helpful advice from a Rosedale veterinarian that can help your dog come to enjoy car rides again.

Start out slow. Just like with anything else, helping your pet overcome motion sickness can take time and patience. Start out taking your pet with you on really short trips, such as a short ride around the block. As he or she becomes accustomed to riding, gradually increase the time and distance.

Allow for adequate airflow for your pet during travel. Often times a good dose of fresh air can help a pet overcome that wave of nausea so make sure there is plenty of good air circulating throughout the vehicle. Just be careful about how low your windows are. You don’t want your pet to jump or fall from your vehicle and get injured.

Keep your pet secure during travel. Being jostled around in a moving vehicle is not only a quick way to upset your pet’s stomach, but it’s also quite dangerous. If you were to get into an accident, your pet could become injured or worse. Always keep your animal companion secure when you’re traveling, whether it be in a carrier or with a specially designed pet harness (your Rosedale veterinarian can provide suggestions on which one would be best for your pet.) Staying still can help curb the symptoms of motion sickness.

Give your pet a break. If your dog appears as though he or she is about to get sick, try to avoid it by pulling over and stopping for a while. If possible, take your pet outside on a leash for a short walk, to get some fresh air, to have a drink of water or to have a bathroom break. By the time you get back in to go again, your pet will likely have gotten over that initial nausea and be feeling better.

Add some variety. Some pets become ill when they ride in a vehicle because they associate it with something that makes them feel anxious, such as a trip to your Rosedale veterinarian, or a visit to the boarder or groomer. Break this negative association by spicing it up a bit. Bring your pet to the local dog park or someplace else that is fun for them, and eventually they’ll begin to look forward to car rides.

Coping with motion sickness in dogs can be a challenge, but it’s something that can be overcome with enough time, effort and patience. By following these simple tips and working closely with your Rosedale veterinarian, you’ll hopefully have your dog enjoying car rides nausea-free in no time!