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Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Traveling with Fluffy

Over hill and dale, off to Grandmother's house we go (with Fluffy)...

It is getting to be the holiday season and many of us will be traveling to family festivities with our dogs.  How do we make this a good experience for everyone in the car?  Here are some pointers:

First, let's talk about Fluffy's "happy time" in the car.  If Fluffy doesn't like to be in the car, "hill and dale" can be an eternity.  Here are some training tips:
  • Start walking Fluffy by taking him out to the car in the driveway.  Have him sit for a few minutes, have some toys and other distractions there, and then walk him back in the house. Repeat this for several days.
  • Next, open the car door.  Have fluffy walk to the car and jump in the back seat.  You might need to have some toys or other enticements in the back seat to have this happen.  As soon as he jumps in, praise him.  Wait a minute or two and have him come out and go back in the house.  Repeat this for several days.
  • Repeate the above step, but close the door.  Repeat this for one or two days.
  • Now, have Fluffy get in the car, start the engine, and back to the end of the driveway.  Then pull back, praise him, and bring him inside. Repeat this for several days.
  • Put Fluffy in the car and drive around the block.  Repeat this for several days.
  • Now, go on a little trip of ten to twenty minutes.  Do this a few times. 
Fluffy is now ready for "hill and dale".

Next, let's talk about safety,,,

Remember that I asked that Fluffy be put in the back seat.  This should eliminate the passenger side air bag deploying in Fluffy's face if you (I hope it never happens) get into a car crash.  I would also include that you either keep Fluffy in a crate that is stable or a restraining device that would keep him safe in the event of an accident.  A crate or restraining device is Fluffy's "seat belt" that will help him survive a crash.

I have heard of so many horriffic accidents with unrequired fatalities because of unrestrained dogs.  If you restrain your dog on a car trip, everything will be great.  For more information, please contact The Best Dog Trainers in South Florida.

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