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Tips for keeping dogs safe when traveling in cars (videos)

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When traveling with dogs in cars, it’s important to take the time to prepare your pet and prevent any problems from arising. One of the greatest mistakes pet owners make is not taking the time needed to familiarize your pet with riding in a vehicle. Then, when there is an emergency or an absolute need for your dog to travel by automobile, he or she is scared, anxious and fearful. In order to prevent any distress in your pet, teach your dog how to ride in a car by slowly acquainting him or her with the vehicle, then going for short trips then ultimately take longer car rides.

There are many benefits to having a dog that feels comfortable traveling in cars. If your dog enjoys riding, you can easily take him or her on vacation, long road trips or not worry when it’s time for your dog’s scheduled trip to the veterinarian’s office. The best way to familiarize your dog with car travel is to start by putting your dog’s crate in the vehicle, then letting him or her sit in the crate without starting the car.

Take your time and make sure your dog is comfortable in his or her crate just being in the vehicle. Give him or her plenty of affection while in the crate. You can give rewards as well, but praise and affection is highly effective. Once your dog is used to being in the crate and in the vehicle, you can begin by starting up the engine. This is a good way to see if your dog becomes anxious or fearful once the engine is running. When you’re assured that, your dog is comfortable with the car running you can go for a short drive. Don’t try anything extensive, just a quick ride around the block will suffice. Be certain to give plenty of verbal praise and affection and reward your dog liberally.

You’ll find that your dog will become more comfortable with the idea of going for rides. You might even find that you can lose the crate and harness your dog to the seat.

Check out the video above for more on this topic, including tips, ideas and suggestions for keeping dogs safe when traveling in cars.

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Charisse Van Horn is the owner of the Pets and their Peeps blog. You may follow Pets and Peeps on Facebook.

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