two dogs peeping out the window of a car

Help Your Dogs Get Over Their Fear of Car Rides

How to Get Dogs Comfortable in the Car

While some dogs love riding in cars, others fear hopping in the backseat and riding around town. Thankfully, most dogs are able to get over their fear of car rides with a little help from their owners. But how do we get dogs comfortable in the car? This guide from Auto Simple is going to offer you some advice on helping your pup adjust to trips in the car.

Read more: Make Long Trips Enjoyable with These Top Car Games 

Why Are Dogs Afraid of the Car?

There are a number of reasons dogs develop a fear of riding in the car, from traumatic experiences to illness. Just like in people, it isn’t uncommon for dogs to get uncomfortable or nauseated by riding in the car. The sensation of riding in a vehicle isn’t something dogs are innately used to, which can make them an uncomfortable environment for your dog to be in. Dogs can also have negative experiences associated with riding in the car or may have only ridden in one once or twice before.

Helping Dogs Get Over Car Fear a dog wearing shades looking out a car window

So, how do we get dogs comfortable in the car? The key is understanding what might be causing your pet’s fear. If you think car sickness might be the root of the issue then it is a good idea to avoid riding in the car right after your dog has eaten a full meal. You can also talk with your vet about an over-the-counter motion sickness medicine.

If your dog’s fear seems to be purely environmental, slowly adjusting them to being in the car and creating a positive experience can help get them comfortable. Make getting in the car an exciting experience instead of a forced one. Bring toys along in the car and offer a treat or two as a reward for getting into the car. Once inside the vehicle, wait a few minutes to allow them to adjust to the car instead of speeding off right away.

A helpful tip to getting a nervous pup adjusted to riding in the car is starting with short trips to fun destinations. Start off with trips to the park or beach to show that riding in the car doesn’t always lead to stopping by the vet.

Read more: Which Ride-Share App Should I Use? 

Each dog’s comfort level with the car is different and being patient and consistent with them will help get your dog more comfortable. Are you looking for the perfect vehicle for your next road trip? Check out our online inventory to find the ultimate road trip partner for you and your pup and be sure to schedule a test drive today.