• Hello Everyone, I'm not sure if this is behaviour issues, does anyone have issues with taking their B's in the car with them?

    Our girl is 6 months now, she struggles in vehicles, she always seems really nervous about being inside one and is never excited to get in. We do a lot of driving with her, as we take her to work every day, the dog park, beaches, mountains and whatever adventures we go on (and loves all of it). If she is really tired after a big day she falls asleep right away and no issue. But if not then she seems really uncomfortable the whole time and often pees too, while sitting or lying in her bed. We will make an effort to make sure she pees right before she gets in the car, this helps, but sometimes another small one will appear.

    I'm hoping that by doing it more and more she becomes used to it and sees it as an exciting thing, rather than something to fear. We have tried in a kennel, on the back seat, bed, no bed, and so far the most comfortable she seems to be in all seats folded flat with her bed.

    Any recommendations will help.
    Thank you!


  • Some dogs find car travel upsetting, and she is young. My first girl used to get car sick and would vomit, but she grew out of it. Giving her Gravol helped but was difficult because she did not like pills, so it was a struggle, and I was very relieved when she no longer needed it. Dogs that associate car rides with trips to the vet may also become car averse, but it sounds like your dog has more pleasant associations so that is unlikely to be the issue.


  • @love_leeloo - Do you have her in a crate in the car? If not that would help... she will get used to it.. it might take a bit for that to happen... when you are first leaving could be that she is looking forward to the adventure... crate will make her feel more secure. Never take any of mine not being in a crate. And could be that she is getting a bit seasickness... so I would say that a crate might help


  • @eeeefarm - But the excitement of the fun to come might make her seem nervous... when she is just looking forward to the adventure


  • Put her in a wire crate in the car. So she can see all around her but feels safe - wire is better for car journeys than the enclosed varikennel type. I find Basenjis hate these anyway - they make them feel vulnerable, not being about to see around 360 degrees.

    Go to the (human) health food shop and get a bottle of Rescue Remedy. This is a herbal preparation which comes in a small bottle with an eye-dropper in the cap. She probably won't like it but open the side of her mouth and drop about half the dropper full into her. Do this about 30 or so minutes before she is put into the car-crate.

    I have found over the years that this is a cure-all for vehicle sickness / anxiety / nervousness / general unease. Only a very few of my (many) Basenjis have needed it but it was always carried in the dog bag so it was there for return journeys too -

    It is also invaluable for Bonfire Night (5th November here) and fireworks ! My pack was always spaced out on Rescue Remedy well before the village festivities started banging !


  • @tanza said in Driving/travel Issues:

    @eeeefarm - But the excitement of the fun to come might make her seem nervous... when she is just looking forward to the adventure

    Yes, absolutely, but with mine it was a different kind of excitement. If I turned out of the driveway in the direction of the regional forest, it was happy. If I turned the other way.....towards the vet.....there was anxiety rather than happy anticipation. The difference was obvious. But they seem to take their dog lots of places, which usually results in car calmness after repeated trips, so I would lean toward physical discomfort.


  • I have had one further thought. Is anyone tense or anxious when driving? Or subject to road rage? Dogs are quick to pick up on human emotions, and they will read body language tension and possibly interpret it as a threat to them. Even one incident with a young dog could result in an aversion to driving. Eventually just the idea of getting into the car might cause anxiety.


  • i have a screamer , he hops in the car just fine but once it starts going he starts screaming. I believe it was from a very bad experience at a Vets office which we do not go to anymore, but the screaming still starts as soon as the car moves out of the driveway.


  • I think some doggies get dizzy or nauseous when they don't see the horizon.
    With my Cosmo, I have a hefty seatbelt safety harness in the back seat she's tethered to. She then positions herself in the center in the back seat where she can see the view from the windshield between the two front seats.
    Maybe it will help if she's high enough in the vehicle (i.e. her eye-level) where she can see through the windows.


  • @isabob said in Driving/travel Issues:

    he hops in the car just fine but once it starts going he starts screaming

    omgosh! How long does that go on for?


  • Not sure we've ever had a Basenji who loved the car. Some liked it less than others. We had one who hated the car until we were going dangerous speeds, at which point he totally relaxed. LOL Long way of saying I don't think your pup is behaving abnormally.

    What happens if you hold her? Of course you can't do this all the time but if she seems comfortable then it may be she feels vulnerable, which suggests that getting a wire crate, as suggested by @Zande, would be worth a try.

    I also suspect she'll get more used to the drives. Sometimes these things take longer than you think they should.


  • Our almost 6 month old isn't keen either but is better if she has something to lick or chew.


  • Mine have always loved the car and been speed merchants - they particularly loved the motorways where Mom could really put her foot down. On the way to a show or wherever, they would sit up and show an interest in the passing scene but on the way home, they always slept.

    It wasn't the car the one I used Rescue Remedy on objected to. He hated large lorries, passing or being passed by us !


  • My 11 month old does terrible poop in the car even a short trip to the end of the street...they are not normal ones...very runny, green and foul. If I hold him on my lap he does not poop, but tromps me and is very agitated. I am trying a thundershirt.


  • @daureen said in Driving/travel Issues:

    I am using the wire crate to try to contain the poop. I can't take him anywhere. He may associate with vet. When to groomer on my lap yesterday -- he lost the battle with a skunk that got into our home, He was not happy in the car...trip was less than 1 mile.


  • Over the years, all my Rosa descendents were anxious in the car at first, then settled down with age, and only showed excitement when the van stopped.

    And then there was my problem child, IBIS. She was a screamer, at many things. The van specifically _ we put her in a wire cage in the van (then the truck), like we use at home, about 2 1/2 ft wide, 3 ft deep, 3 ft high. She got to the point that she screamed for the first 5 minutes, settled down, but every stop sign/light, screamed, quietly gradually to blood curdling. I was always reminded of the story I heard on the old basenji list about the neighbor in the apartment building calling 911 because there was a woman being murdered in the apartment next door - and it was the basenji!
    She did best with the highway driving.
    Never poop or throwing up, it was anger, not the driving itself. When we stopped I think she felt she could get out NOW.
    She went through life thinking "I'm the Ibis, gotta love me!"
    To the poster that has the screaming dog, I'm very sorry, it is not fun. Luckily Ibis was so good natured, and so lovable she got through it (us too).
    Sorry, got off topic - Ibis would feel that's fitting, Gotta Love me! She is the one that we were more outwardly sad when we helped her cross the Rainbow Bridge when she was allowed to pass. She was 16


  • If you have ever transported a reluctant cat, you have a good idea of what it is like to ride with a screaming Basenji! That said, mine have mostly been reasonable. I find if their first experience in a car is a long trip, they may settle down more easily the second and subsequent times since they don't expect they are getting out every time you stop....


  • @eeeefarm No, the only thing I can think of in this case would be, maybe she picks up on my nerves that I have for Leeloo being nervous or peeing in her bed. We use a pee pad, but maybe if I'm more relaxed she will naturally be more relaxed as well. Maybe a case of feeding off each other's energy. I in particular try and drive very slow with her, so she isn't too overwhelmed with the movement. My previous dog loved car rides so this is definitely a new thing for me to try and get through.


  • @imbj I did notice the higher she was the more "comfortable" she got, so possibly having her up high in a crate may work.


  • @love_leeloo
    They do like to “see” - so the higher up makes sense.

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