Why do Dogs Sometimes Get Crazy at People in the Car

My dog is the greatest dog in the world until he goes for a car ride.  He just starts barking like crazy!  He barks at everyone as I drive down the street.  He doesn’t do this with people in the house, what’s happening?



I have seen this with so many clients of ours.  Let’s just say here is a picture of your dog in the back seat.  You are doing the right thing by constraining him so that he doesn’t fly out of control if you have to slam on the breaks.  So far you are doing great.  But still, he is constantly barking and is driving you crazy.  That is bad.  What is the problem and how can you fix it?

...The answer is simpler than you think and the explanation is just as simple.

Dogs are always very aware of dominance; who is the boss, who is the leader.  Who is the dominant one?  Who is in charge?  Look at this picture of your dog.  He is in his car seat that is elevated above the normal seating area which puts him in a raised position.  In the canine world, height is dominance.  Guess what?  You are sitting lower in your driver's seat while your dog is sitting high and mighty in his "dominance seat".  On top of that, you have given him an excellent view of everyone around the car.  He is dominant and he sees all these "other animals" (people) moving around the car.  Some of these "other animals" might even be walking towards the car which gives them an aggressive posture.

Don’t forget that you put your dog in the dominant role and he sees possible aggression towards his pack.  Barking, jumping, growling are all natural actions he could take to try and protect the rest of the "pack".  You put him out in front.  You told him that he was the one who had to protect you and the rest of the people in the car.  You did this by giving him height and dominance.  You elected him the "boss of you".

Now, what do you do?  The answer is simple.  Lower his height.  Find a doggie carrier that you can put on the seat or floor of your car.  Find a car seat that sits on the seat of your car.    All you are doing is lowering the height of your dog and lowering his requirement to be the "boss".  Also, make sure that you don't put him in the front passenger seat, unless you can turn off the air bag release.

This is a quick fix that seems to work over and over again.  Take away your dog's requirement for dominance in the car and your rides will be a whole lot nicer!  Please contact us immediately if you have any questions.  Please feel free to contact us regarding dog training questions at The Best Dog Trainers in South Florida.

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