If you’re planning a family vacation, you may be thinking about taking your dogs too. After all, your dogs are part of the family as well. It can be a fun adventure taking your dogs to new places and letting them experience new sights, sounds and smells. However, the first hurdle you need to get over is the car ride. Even if your dogs are good travellers, it’s important to be prepared for longer journeys. It isn’t easy for a dog to be in a car for a prolonged amount of time so you’ll need to do what you can to ensure their comfort. Here are some tips.
A Secure Place
It’s best for your dogs to travel in a carrier while in the car. Firstly, they’ll know they have a safe place in the car where they can lie down and try to relax. Secondly, you can easily pad out a carrier or crate to ensure they aren’t harmed if you have to make any swift turns. Before you make your journey, make sure you do a few short journeys with your dog’s first so they can get used to the space you’ve made for them. Shorter journeys in the car will allow your dog to build up to a longer one.
It’s tempting for owners to stick to the same feeding schedules because dogs aren’t fond of change. However, feeding a dog just before departure can have disastrous results. Your dog is likely to either be sick or need to go to the toilet. That’s not something you want to deal with half way through your journey. So, to avoid any accidents, it’s better to feed your dogs a light meal about three to four hours before you head off.
Check the Car
Having dogs aboard the car means you’re carrying extra weight. You don’t need to find out that the extra weight has caused a flat tyre when you’re driving on a busy road. You can learn about tyre safety at www.safe-t-tyre.com.au. You should also check your oil and gas levels and look under the car for any leakages. Unusual noises or unsafe vehicles can make dogs nervous. You want your dogs to be as settled as possible.
Let the Air In
It can get hot and stuffy in a car, and animals are at risk when they’re too hot. Roll the windows down while you’re driving so your dogs can get plenty of fresh air. Otherwise, use the air conditioning to keep them cool. Never leave your dog alone in a parked car, even for five minutes. In some places, residents have the authority to smash your windows if they see a dog left in a hot car.
If you see that your dog is becoming agitated, it could be time to stop and go for a walk. Getting your dogs out of the car and going for a walk will make it easier for them to relax when you return. A tired dog is much more settled than an energetic one.