Traveling opens us up to a world of adventure. Many dog owners want to take their four-legged friends everywhere. We prefer to experience life with our dogs rather than leaving them at home with a sitter or boarding them in a kennel.
This raises an important question: How does travel affect a dog’s behavior? After all, we want to know how to provide our pets with the best care and avoid stressing them out. Like people, all dogs are different, but let’s go over what to expect when you travel with your best friend.
Travel Expectations To Keep in Mind
A good indication of how travel affects a dog’s behavior is how your furry friend fares in the car. Some dogs are just bursting with energy at the prospect of a car ride. They may recognize the signs as soon as you simply mention the word “car,” and they’ll start wagging their tail with unbridled joy.
On the other hand, you may have a nervous pup who whines and pants excessively the moment you take them into the car. While travel anxiety is a concern, here are a few tips to help set your best friend up for success:
- Start small and sit with your dog in the car without going anywhere.
- Reward them with their favorite treats.
- From there, go on short car trips around the neighborhood.
- Try taking your pup to places they'll associate with good experiences, like the park.
If you only take your dog with you to the vet, they may start to associate car trips with nerve-wracking experiences. Be sure to reinforce positive behavior in the car with treats.
Crate Training Can Help
No matter what form of travel you’re considering, you should get your dog used to being in a crate.
We offer a variety of high-quality foldable dog crates at DogGoods, ranging from size small to double XL. This type of crate is excellent in the car and helps keep your best friend safe. We recommend letting your pup get used to it on shorter rides before going on longer adventures. Once they’re totally used to this space, they’ll have a cozy place to chill while you handle the wheel.
By being crate trained, your dog will get used to being confined. While this may not eliminate all travel anxiety, it will help cut down on it, allowing you to more easily take your dog with you on adventures.
Additional Travel Tips
To help make travel comfortable for your pup, try out these travel tips:
- Bring along your dog’s favorite toys to help ease stress and help with changing air pressure when traveling by plane. Think of how humans chew gum!
- Keep your best friend well hydrated to help reduce anxiety. Give them a block of ice on a plane and make regular water stops when traveling by car.
- Avoid feeding your dog while traveling to reduce nausea. Consider providing a smaller meal beforehand and feeding your pup afterward or while you’re stopped.
- Give your best friend plenty of attention once traveling is over. Some dogs can experience separation anxiety while confined.
Like people, all dogs travel differently. Some become anxious while traveling. Training will benefit them and make the experience easier regardless of the type of traveler your dog is.