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Three Things You Can Do To Fix Car Sickness

Dear Adam:

Thank you so much for your tip on how to get my dog to come to me. After only a day of training he now comes right away no matter where I am. I am definitely the Alpha Dog around here.

I do have another problem. He always gets car sick. Yes, I have not fed him and taken him on short trips. But he always gets sick. He also hyperventilates when I get out of the car even to just get the mail. Not sure what to do.


Dear Patrick,

Car sickness like you’ve described is 100% psychological, and not physical.

Here are three things you can do to fix car sickness:

#1: Start feeding your dog dinner, in the car… while it’s parked in your drive way, with the engine off. After you’ve done this for a week, start doing it with the engine on. For the first couple of days, he may decide that he doesn’t want to eat. Too bad. His food drive will win out over his irrational fear of the car. By the third week, I want you to put him in the car, drive the car to the end of the street and back, then park and feed him dinner. Gradually extend the trips, and if he starts getting sick again, then you’re moving through the steps too quickly.

#2: Supplement #1 by playing games with the dog, involving the car. Play fetch, with the car door open. Throw the ball in the car, let the dog hop in, get the ball, and hop out. As you see the dog gradually start to relax, do it with the engine on. Soon you’ll be able to take him for a short drive to the park, where you will then reward him with lots of play and fun.

#3: With some dogs, simply taking them on an all day road trip will break them of their fear. They’ll throw up and stress for the first half of the day, but by the second half, they start to acclimate. Take lots of breaks at pit stops and take the dog out and play with him. Soon he’ll associate that the car represents a precursor to play and fun.

That’s all for now, folks!