Whether you want to bring your pet dog on a road trip or even just home from the pet shop, you might want to consider one small problem before you do so. Much like us humans, man’s best friend can also face motion sickness problems during car rides. Research has shown that there is no particular breed of dog that is more or less adversely affected by car sickness than other dogs. Although car sickness typically occurs more often in younger dogs or puppies (as their ear structures are not wholly in form yet), it could also affect older dogs as well. If you’re worried about what to give dogs for carsickness, then fret not! There are many ways to prevent or to lessen the effects on your pet dog until you arrive at the intended destination, be it a long or short car ride.
Dog Car Sickness Symptoms
Before the treatment though, a dog owner should be able to detect carsickness symptoms in a dog before any messes happen. In fact, a sharp-eyed owner may even notice that there are several stages to a dog’s carsickness:
- Stage 1: The dog would constantly lick its lips and drool excessively
- Stage 2: The dog would yawn or cry and whine in distress. The owner at this point should realize that something is wrong. The dog may also be immobile with fear.
- Stage 3: The dog would finally resort to vomiting (even on an empty stomach), urinating or defecating.
Things You Can Do For A Dog With Car Sickness
Distracting the Dog
Firstly, keep the dogs distracted. The distraction could come in the form of a toy, good scenery, or even a friend to play with, be it human or dog. An owner could choose the dog’s favorite toy and only let him/her play with it during car rides. Otherwise, if your dog has a short attention span or is too anxious to play by itself for long, the owner can always bring along a friend or family member to play with the dog and keep it busy when its attention drifts. This person should preferably be someone whom the dog already knows and likes (like kids), or else the dog would just feel even more threatened and overwhelmed by the nerve-wracking car ride and a complete stranger. Another option to distract dogs would be to roll down the windows and let the dog enjoy the scenery outside. Through the many pictures of dogs leaning out of car windows spread across the internet, it is not a secret that dogs love watching things. If the dog is big enough to look out the window, then the owner could focus on driving while the dog enjoys the scenery. However, owners must make sure that the dog is safely buckled into doggie seats to prevent an overeager pet from falling out. It would be worth noting that if the dog is in the passenger seat, then the owner should take out the airbags in case of an accident, as airbags may hurt the dog.
Watch Food and Drink Consumption
Another tip would be on the food and drink consumption of your dog. An owner should refrain from feeding the dog six to eight hours before the car ride, as some dogs are not able to vomit if there’s nothing in their stomachs (and watch what they consume too, like rocks). An owner could give the dog a treat or two during the car ride if they display good behavior to encourage acting like that in the future. Besides that, an owner can always consult the vet for anti-nausea medication for the dog. However, if a more organic method is preferred, dog owners can also give the dog ginger, food that is reported to lessen the effects of nausea on dogs. We must note that the consultation of a vet is essential when feeding your dog, as they would be able to give you professional advice to suit your dog.
If All Else Fails: Seek Out A Vet
If you don’t know what to give dogs for carsickness, the above points should be able to help a nauseous dog out during car rides. If your dog still faces carsickness after trying out everything, you might want to consult a vet to see if it’s motion sickness that your dog is facing, or something else, such as stress or the fear of cars.