How Do I Train My Dog to Get in the Car?

Most people would love to have their dogs hop into the car and go on car rides with them. However, in the first instance having your dog get in the car with ease is not easy.

At times you will have to be super patient if at all you want your dog to ride in the car with you. The good news about dogs is, eventually your dog is going to be comfortable riding with you in the car.

Motion sickness is a phobia that a dog can be having. Unlike humans, animals can feel some type of way when moving around in objects like cars. Eventually, dogs with motion sickness can become a challenge when trying to get them in any moving object like a car.

If your biggest challenge has been having your dog get in the car he could be suffering from motion sickness. Here is a guide to help you train your dog to get in the car with you.

Get rid of car sickness

If your dog fails to get into the car because he is car sick. The very first step is to get the dog to deal with his phobias. Success begins with healing. The sickness often comes from anxiety and hence stress.

Therefore before you deal with the issue of the dog failing to get into the car, find ways to deal with the phobias. There are various ways of helping your dog deal with his fears.

The most known one is feeding your dog in the car with the car off. Most dogs will not get into the car because of the sound of the engine. Turning the car off will make the dog feel like the environment is accommodative.

Also, you can opt to play tag with the dog while the engine is off. The dog will begin to feel like the environment inside the car is not foreign and will like the experience. Thereafter try the two experiments with the car on.

In the event, you are not able to perform the exercises by yourself. A dog trainer will always come in handy. These professionals know what dogs want hence making work easy for you. A repetition of these actions will overtime become successful and you can now enjoy car rides with your dog.

Ensure your dog does not have a medical condition

The other issue you have to address before training is the issue of medical conditions. Older dogs might fail to get in the car because they have arthritis. If you are dealing with an older dog, ensure you rule out the possibility of arthritis.

With age, most dogs develop arthritis but the same can be dealt with if you get to visit the vet often. If the dog is a puppy and he can’t hop into the car, your car might be too high. I am sure you don’t want your dog tripping and falling on hard concrete.

If the issue is the height of the car, try and improvise or resolve to carry your dog into the car. You can be the help your dog needs until he is old enough to get into the car by himself.

Lure the dog into the car

After ruling out all possible hindrances, now you can move to train. The very first step is to lure the dog. Dogs love treats and play, you can use the two as your lure mechanism. Hold your dog’s treat in your hand and start moving closer to your car door.

Ensure the treatment is directly proportional to the nose of the dog and even closer. The closer the threat is to the nose of the dog, the more his focus will be on the treat. You will realize your dog eventually ends up getting into the car.

If you don’t have food with you, follow the same steps with a toy. Dogs love to play and the sight of their favorite toy will have them following closely. The trick is to ensure the toy is not too far from the dog, otherwise, he will lose focus.

Try to get the dog in the car with hand

Remember you don’t want to spend eternity luring your dog. Therefore the next step is to try without a lure. Just use your hand and no treats at all. Let the dog follow your hand into the car. Too many lures with gifts will have you performing the lures every day.

If the dog doesn’t jump into the car, you will have to use the lure just a few more times. No matter how tiring, please don’t give up. The results are beneficial at the end of the day. Alternate between luring with gifts and following your hand until a balance is found.

Talk to the dog

There are some words the often you use them, the more your dog identifies with them. There are no specific words to use here. You can even go with ‘hop in’ or ‘load up’. Whichever verbal cue you use, remember the intent is to get your dog to understand the words.

The more often the words are said, the nearer you are to getting him in the car. Remember verbal cues should be the first before you start luring. If the dog doesn’t hop in with a verbal cue then you can use the lure technique.

Drop hand signal

Always remember you are training the dog. So when he gets one command, you can drop the rest. If your dog starts being responsive to verbal cues the best step to take is to drop the hand signal. Also as much the treats should be part of your dog’s life.

You shouldn’t use them forever to get him into the car. However you will realize with the verbal cues and luring, your dog will just be fine. Training takes time but at the end of the day, you will realize all the benefits which come with patience. Don’t give up, frequent trials bring long term results.

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