How To Travel With Your Dog By Car


Traveling by car with a dog can be a pleasant enjoyable experience for both of you with some advance preparation.

Before embarking on a trip you need to get your dog comfortable and familiar with the vehicle. Let him walk around the car while it is parked at home so he can explore the machine and feel comfortable around it. Then start letting him sit in the car while it is parked. Finally begin taking the dog for short rides in the car.

When you plan to take your dog away on a trip make a visit to his vet so you are sure your pet is healthy and his shots are up to date.

You will need a sturdy leash and a good collar for your dog. You want identification tags on the collar with the dog’s name, your name and phone number. You also want the tag showing proof that the dog’s rabies shot is up to date attached to the collar.

No matter how well trained a dog is it is possible for you to lose him. Carry a recent picture of your dog and it is helpful if your pet has been micro chipped.

Do not feed your dog just before leaving on a trip since he may become car sick. The dog will need water.

Never let your dog ride with his head sticking out the window. This is dangerous and he can be hurt. Never let a dog ride in the bed of a pickup truck.


On a trip that takes several hours you should stop about every hour for a few minutes to let your dog stretch his legs, relieve himself and drink some water. Be sure the dog is securely on his leash when you take him from the vehicle.

If you are traveling long distances for many hours your dog will need some longer breaks so he can get some exercise.

Never leave your dog in a hot car alone for any length of time. Dogs can be overcome with heat very quickly. If you must leave him for five minutes or so park in a shady spot and leave the windows down a little. If you are stopping at a fast food place so you can get something to eat get your order to go, return to the car and eat your food while you run the air conditioner.

It is a good idea to have a pet safety belt so your dog will not be thrown from the car in the event of an accident.

If you are traveling a long distance you may want to use a sturdy crate. The crate needs to be large enough for the dog to move around and to lie down. It should have a leak proof bottom and be free of any interior obstacles that might injure the dog. Sturdy handles help you move or lift the crate. Make sure to provide a bed or mat for the dog to rest on as well as water for drinking.

If you will be staying overnight on the road know where you can book a pet friendly hotel so you and your dog can get a decent rest.

Travel with some of your dog’s favorite food, water, long lasting edible chews, chew toys and plastic bags so you can clean up after your dog. If you dog takes medication take it with you.

If you know your animal is prone to car sickness ask your vet about some medicine before starting your trip. Never give your dog over the counter motion sickness medicine meant for humans.

Traveling can be very stressful for your pet. If this is the case try to be kind and patient with him.