If your dog begins yawning, drooling, or whining when she travels in your car, you may be witnessing the first signs of carsickness.  Most often carsickness is caused by the stress of being in a car and not the motion of the car.  Here are some tips to help you and your dog to have more pleasant car rides.

1.  Open the window a little to get some fresh air circulating inside.

2.  Make sure your dog can see out the window.  Choose a spot in your car – a rear window ledge is fine – where she can get up and look out to see the road up ahead.

3.  Train her to be comfortable riding in the car.  Begin by just sitting in the car with her and praise her for being good.  Next, start and run the engine for a few minutes and continue the praise.  Then drive away slowly, praising her all the while.  Do this exercise over the course of a few hours, increasing the distance you travel until she can ride in the car without getting sick.  Once you’ve been able to drive for a half-hour without her getting sick, the problem is probably solved.  It is best to have someone else in the car with you who can help calm and soothe your dog while you drive.

4.  If your dog’s reaction to being in the car is severe, try a motion sickness medication and take her to the vet.

“Did you ever notice when you blow in a dog’s face he gets mad at you?  But when you take him in a car, he sticks his head out the window!” ~ Steve Bluestone

Source: Sandra and Harry Choron. Planet Dog, a doglopedia. Houghton Mifflin Co. 2005