Have Dog - Will Travel

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There is nothing I like better than going for a ride with my mom or dad. They each have big trucks and when I am sitting in the front seat, I can see everything.

Both mom and dad have several rules I have to follow and even though I would like not to follow them, I know they are for my own safety.

Rule number one is I have to wear a special doggy harness that keeps me secure in the seat. Should something happen, like an accident, I would not squash my mom or dad (I am a pretty big dog) or get myself tossed around.

Rule number two is “no head out the window.” I don’t mind that too much as mom or dad keeps the air conditioner on during our hot Florida days. However, I sure would love to have my head out the window and enjoy the wind in my face, but mom has given me the straight scoop on why I am not allowed to do that. It seems that gravel from the road or bugs flying around can get into my eyes and could cause me much pain. Plus with automatic windows, it is possible for someone to hit a button by mistake and a sudden window closing could choke me.

Rule number three is no riding in the back of the truck. I always thought that would be such fun, I could bark at people, and move around a lot. But, mom says it is very dangerous as I could fall out and get hurt. She says that even if I had a leash on and it was tethered, bad things could happen. She told me about a dog that she saw once who had a leash on and fell out of the truck it was riding in. The poor dog was dragged for a long time before its owner realized what happened and unfortunately it died. Mom says the only way to travel in the back of a truck is in a secured crate.

Mom also says, that there are dogs with timid tummies, and some that are scared to ride in cars and trucks. She says that you should treat these dogs with care and slowly show them that a trip in the car is fun.

With scared dogs, mom says, slowly introduce them to the car, without the car running and offer a few treats to show them, there is nothing to be afraid of. Once you get your dog feeling more comfortable, you can start the engine and just sit with the car/truck running to let the dog get used to the sound. The next step would be to back in and out of the driveway and then take a short trip around the block, always giving treats and making the trip enjoyable.

For the timid tummy part, mom says to talk to your veterinarian about using an anxiety drug to calm the dog down. Again treats will help, only you have to be careful on the kind and amount, as you do not want the dog to throw up in your car/truck. Once you get your dog to relax, you can start to slowly remove the drug use and still keep up with a few treats until your dog starts to enjoy the ride.

Mom says that small dogs can become weapons if left loose in the car, as they can crawl under your feet and create all kinds of problems between your feet, the gas, and brake pedals. Small dogs are best in a crate or attached to a “doggy seat belt.”

I love riding with my parents, and mom has taught me what she calls proper “truck riding behavior.” I know what “jump” or “in” means, I do “sit” properly and when we arrive at where we are going I know that “come” or “down” means I can get out. She says knowing these commands makes me a “good traveling dog” and keeps me safe.

I hope article helps you with your dog and that you have learned a few safety tips that will help keep you and your dog safe.

Until next time, I remain

Your Sadie

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