Your year-old retriever mix Astro thinks car rides are the ultimate reward. When he displays a desirable behavior, he’ll happily bypass the treats for a trip in that magical vehicle. Recently, however, your fun-loving pooch has whimpered and whined while underway. Once, he vomited on your leather seat. You know dogs can experience motion sickness in cars, planes, and boats. You fear that poor Astro’s the latest victim. Tomorrow, he’ll visit your Gresham, OR veterinarian for a physical exam and behavioral counseling. The vet will diagnose your dog’s malady and develop a treatment plan.
If Astro has been nailed by motion sickness, you’ll notice several unmistakable symptoms. First, he’ll continually lick his lips. Next, he’ll drool excessively, probably slobbering all over the car. After that, he’ll yawn and moan; and then he’ll perch on the seat like a statue. If you’ve ignored him, you’ll take notice when he upchucks on the seat or deposits a smelly pile on the carpet.
Since Astro’s a young adult dog, his sense of equilibrium hasn’t completely developed, making him prone to motion sickness. After he fully matures, he could outgrow this embarrassing condition.
Or, your pooch’s unforgettable antics could stem from an incident he’d rather forget. He still recalls that terrible three-day weekend road trip, when he was trapped in the SUV’s cargo bay with your mean-tempered cat. Although this angry beast couldn’t leave his crate, he repeatedly growled and hissed at your terrified teenaged dog. Even today, your poor canine companion believes that nasty cat is lurking inside the vehicle.
First, your vet will consider a neurological or behavioral reason for your dog’s antics. After he eliminates those causes, and hears about Astro’s travel history, he’ll probably determine that motion sickness is the villain.
Your vet can use several concurrent treatment tactics. Open the vehicle’s windows while underway; as that should reduce the interior air pressure and decrease Astro’s queasiness. Pack his favorite blanket and toys; and stop often for pleasant potty walks. Don’t feed him for several hours prior to each trip. With less food churning in his stomach, he’s less likely to vomit.
If Astro’s still suffering, ask your Gresham, OR veterinarian if medication might help. If your dog could be affected by motion sickness, contact us for expert advice.