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Discussion Starter #1
I've never had a dog that didn't love to go for car rides. Now I have 2 5-month old puppies. Granted, the only rides they've been on have been to the vet and to my home (away from the only home they'd known up until then), so I understand their riding history hasn't had great results. On both rides, one of them pooped in the crate within 5 minutes of getting in the car. In an effort to help them see that car rides don't always have bad results, my husband and I loaded them up yesterday for a slow ride down the driveway. We each held one in our lap so we could see how they reacted. One was completely relaxed and had no issues at all. The other one was so terrified, she began shaking, climbing up my neck, and within 1 minute of being in the car, pooped on me. I felt awful that she was so traumatized she involuntarily soiled.

We travel to another town an hour away from here about every weekend, so they'll be riding in the car a lot. For trips that extend past our driveway, they'll be in their crates.

Am I doing the right thing by taking them for rides that have no negative outcome to get them used to the car? I've only had them for 1 1/2 weeks. Is it just too much too soon?

Thanks in advance.
 

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Go slow. Make the car a really nice place to be. Just sit in the car without going anywhere. Bring some small tasty treats and just let her walk around the back seat. (You might want to cover the seats ahead of time with an old blanket or sheet).
Repeat many times. When she seems to accept the car, then start the car and shut it off without going anywhere. Then go 10'...then to the end of the drive...you get the idea.
 

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Thanks for the advice. I never would've thought to go that slow, but that's the approach I'll take.

I'm beginning to think I misnamed this thread. The same dog, Lena, got her first bath today since coming to living with us. My husband said she reacted the same way she did in the car, including pooping in the tub. He said she was so hysterical he could barely even soap her up.

I'm beginning to realize she's got issues and is going to take a lot of work to earn her trust. Since she's a schnauzer, I'd intended to keep her groomed, and I can see that's going to be a problem too. Her sister has none of the same issues. I guess I should tackle one thing at a time. Where to start?
 

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Ice used to not like the car as well... she came around eventually. Once she realized that going in the car meant we would visit some place fun (park, petco, etc) she learned to love it. =)
 

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Tooney's advice is what I would do... make it a ridiculously gradual thing with plenty of treats and praise when she does well (eventually the reward of a wonderful place to go at the end of the car ride!).

My two puppies were terrified of the car ride at first... I don't know why, because they did fine on the hour-long ride home when we first got them. (My husband thought maybe they were fearful I was going to take them back to the breeder!!) The first time I took them anywhere, they whimpered so sadly and both of them crawled up in my lap and on my shoulder, and one of them climbed up so that he was around my neck the whole rest of the drive! With gradual desensitization and plenty of love and patience and rewards, they're doing much better now. I'd take the same slow/gradual approach re: the bath. A ton of patience in the beginning will pay off later!
 

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I would suggest what others have mentioned. You just have to be very slow with the whole process.

Before actually gettng her into the car, try from outside the car. Some dogs may have a fear of just getting close to the car, because they know whats coming. Try giving her treats, playing, etc.
Maybe play with a toy she really likes for a while. Once she's really in the play mood, deliberatly thow the toy somewhat close to the car and see if she'll get it.
If she doesn't, continue playing and keep trying, maybe throwing the toy a little farther from the car.

Once she's comfortable around the car, ry getting her to go around the car while a door is open, or while the car is on.

This is only is you think she's deathly afraid and isn't making progress while being in the car. If she starts makign progress while being in the car the you dont have to be as ridiculously gradual.


Hope that helps! =D
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the advice everyone!

How would you recommend approaching the bath terror? Placing her in the tub without water and giving her treats? Should I work with her on this (and the car) daily?

She's very skidish. I finally got her to go through her dog door and into her crate. Now that she knows the dog door won't hurt her, she runs in and out all day long. This morning, I accidentally dropped something on her while she was in the crate (I didn't have the top on it). It wasn't heavy, but it really startled her. She shot out through the doggie door and now she won't go back in the crate. I guess I'll start over by luring her with treats. The poor thing is afraid of her own shadow.
 

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Since Nika was 6 weeks old .... I take her In the car/truck wherever I go, but latley she Is starting to get a bit 'bratty' in the car/truck .... I think she just gets a bit excited .... I have to wait until she settles down before taking off!!! Also, what helps is to take her 'chewie' with us.
 

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I have a question, If your dog is terrified or say drools a lot then vomits like mine; how do you treat the dog. I guess what I mean is if you give them affection "oh it's okay"pet pet pet, will it reinforce their behavior. I have been trying to just talk to mine to distract him and if he vomits a "oh bummer man" then clean it up like nothing really happened, basically staying neutral.
4Runner = vomit comet
Accord = the drool bucket
 

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I have a question, If your dog is terrified or say drools a lot then vomits like mine; how do you treat the dog. I guess what I mean is if you give them affection "oh it's okay"pet pet pet, will it reinforce their behavior. I have been trying to just talk to mine to distract him and if he vomits a "oh bummer man" then clean it up like nothing really happened, basically staying neutral.
4Runner = vomit comet
Accord = the drool bucket

I give mine Benedryl.This is what my vet recomended.You have to do it according to weight,each tablet= 25lbs.She doen't drool as much and calms her down so she doesn't throw up.
 

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I have a question, If your dog is terrified or say drools a lot then vomits like mine; how do you treat the dog.
No talking....get between your dog and the object of fear and then lead the dog away to a comfortable distance unless you're talking about something like thunderstorm phobia.
 
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