Tips for travelling with dogs

Check out these tips for keeping your pup happy and healthy on long car trips.

Dog owners travelling between the North and South Islands of New Zealand love Bluebridge – on our ferries you can take your precious pooch with you.

Check out these tips for keeping your pup happy and healthy on long car trips.

1 Buy a dog safety seat

Most dog owners will know what it’s like to have your pet flying into the front seat when you are forced to stop suddenly. You might even have experienced your dog knocking your car out of gear in this situation. Not ideal! Just like babies and toddlers, if you’re serious about keeping your dog safe you should consider buying a dog safety seat or belt.

2 Take Rover’s bed

If you can fit it in the car, take your dog’s bed or at least the blanket from it. A lot of dogs find sleeping a good way to cope with motion sickness and the stress of travelling and there’s nothing like familiar bedding to encourage a good sleep.

3 Introduce your puppy to travel gradually

Start by letting your puppy wander around the car with the motor off. Then start with short trips, gradually increasing the distance, so your dog can get used to the experience of car travel.

4 Don’t feed your dog immediately before travelling

Leaving a few hours between feeding and travelling will reduce the chance of travel sickness.

5 Chew toys to relieve boredom and stress

Not all dogs enjoy chew toys, but if yours does then take one or two with you on your journey.

7 Avoid leaving your dog in a parked car

This is especially important in warm weather when the risk of heat stroke is high. If you can’t avoid it, make sure you park in the shade, leave windows down, and leave a good supply of water.

8 Stop for regular walks

Every hour or so you should stop to give your dog a toilet stop and a quick walk. So don’t forget your lead!

9 Make the first few car trips to somewhere fun!

This will help your dog associated car travel with places he or she enjoys. So they’ll be keen to jump in the car whenever asked to.

10 Get a vet’s help for hyperactivity

If your dog is prone to hyperactivity, talk to your vet about whether a mild sedative might help.

But at the end of the day every dog is different. If you’ve got a top travel tip share it for your pet’s fellow pooches!