On a daily basis, you may need to travel with your dog in the car. Vet visits, walks, dog activities … the reasons why you can use your vehicle with your dog can be many. On the other hand, when the dog barks in the car, each ride can become painful, even a true hell for its master. Why does your dog do this? How to solve this problem? Let’s take a look at this case.
My dog barks in the car: why? How do you explain this behavior?
Your dog tends to bark in the car and this behavior is particularly embarrassing and unpleasant for you. But before you act, it is important to understand the causes of this phenomenon in order to provide an appropriate answer.
Here are the main reasons why a dog may bark in the car.
Your dog may have associated car trips with an unpleasant event, such as a visit to the vet. In this case, he may have a tendency to bark to show his fear and the stress that this anxiety generates in him.
Your dog may simply be trying to get your attention. As a toddler trying to catch your eye, he tries in every way to challenge you. And when you end up looking at him, talking to him or touching him, he is satisfied and he continues!
Your dog may be sensitive to the movements of the vehicle and the environment around him. If some dogs are only disturbed by not being able to act on the latter scrolling, other victims are disorders of the inner ear that can give them a feeling of restlessness or nausea and barking to manifest it.
act on the environment
Your dog may consider the car as his place. As soon as he sees vehicles, pedestrians or other animals moving nearby, and to the extent that he can not act on this moving environment, he barks to scare them away. In fact, your little companion may perceive their close passage as an aggression and try to keep them away. And since they necessarily move away by movement, he has the feeling that his process is working. By barking, your dog defends his territory, and to do this he intimidates those who come too close to him.
My dog barks in the car: how to solve the problem?
If your little friend is barking in the car, here are our tips for solving the problem.
Tip # 1: Get your dog used to the car and associate positive experiences with it
If your dog is afraid of cars, it is important to start by helping him appreciate it. To do this, do not hesitate to go back to the starting point. If the journeys are anxious for him before they even begin, if he is reluctant to get into the vehicle to the point where he yawns, moans or cries, then take the time to teach him to accept it.
To help her overcome her fears, avoid limiting car trips to only vet visits or other traumatic events. Take the car for walks with the dog on a regular basis or to drive him to sports sessions or games together. This way, you will allow him to associate your vehicle with positive and pleasant events that will not generate systematic fear when he is there.
Tip no. 2: select the transport box
The transport box is an excellent ally if your dog does a lot in the car. On the one hand, it secures the journeys as the animal is locked inside. Unable to get out, there is no risk of disrupting driving.
In addition, the transport box has the great advantage that it prevents any visual contact with the outside, which reduces stress. It becomes your pet’s cocoon, its protected space where it fears nothing.
However, be sure to choose your shipping box model carefully. It must be solid, safe and have a good size according to your doggy needs. This means that it should not be too small or too large. Your dog should be able to lie down comfortably, easily turn around and get up without the top of his head touching the ceiling. In fact, an unsuitable transport box is uncomfortable, even dangerous, and it will remain anxious for your dog.
Tip # 3: Block this window
To prevent your dog from barking in response to what it observes through the window, you can hide it with a blind. On the other hand, you need to be careful, because this practice is not very safe, which is why the use of the transport box is preferable in this case.
Tip # 4: Keep your dog busy
To prevent your dog from barking in the car, you can simply prey on him during the journeys. There are a whole lot of solutions, like chewing gum, wooden toys, Kong-type toys, etc.
Tip # 5: Ignore your pet
In many situations and in the face of negative behavior, ignoring your dog is particularly effective in getting the animal to stop barking. By barking, the dog is trying to get your attention. If you do not respond to it, it will eventually stop by itself. In fact, by talking to him, looking at him, or caressing him, you reinforce his behavior. He understands that barking is enough to call on you.
Ignoring your dog does not mean talking to him, touching him or even looking at him. This principle must be followed in order to counteract any bad behavior of the animal, a much more effective solution than punishing the doggie. In order for your relationship with your little companion to be fully balanced, it is also preferable that you systematically initiate contact.
My dog barks in the car: what should I avoid doing?
Having explained our advice to remedy this problem, here are the actions you should avoid at all costs.
- Do not try to calm your dog by talking to him, stroking him or looking at him. By doing so, you reinforce his idea of concern and legitimize his stress. You would only increase his discomfort.
- Never leave your dog loose in the car. On the one hand, it increases the risk of barking, but above all be aware that in a car, the law requires that you use a safety device to prevent the animal from becoming a danger to the driver and passengers. Among these systems, you can select the transport box, fasten it with a special belt or place it in the trunk and install a separation grid or safety net to separate it from the cabin.
- Do not try to shout to cover up his barking, because on the contrary, the animal will think that you are imitating him and that you are therefore encouraging him to continue.
- No need to scold your dog afterwards. You should avoid stopping to lecture your pet because he will not be able to create a connection between your anger and the fact that he barked a few minutes before when you were driving.
- Do not reduce your walks to avoid this problem because your dog will bark a lot more during the rare walks you have to make.
- Do not wear an anti-barking collar, which is a punishment that will punish the dog and not teach him good manners. He will stop barking to avoid punishment, out of fear, and not because he understands that this behavior is inappropriate.