What you have to do to prevent your dog from getting dizzy in the car


Dogs get dizzy in the car as much as people, especially puppies

  • Author: By EVA SAN MARTÍN
  • Last update: July 29, 2016

Dogs get dizzy in the car, just like people. But dog dizziness is more frequent among puppies, since their ears are still immature and protect them worse from this discomfort. But, Why do dogs get dizzy when they travel?, What are the symptoms? Y What tricks prevent dizziness? This article tries to answer these questions with four tips.

Why do dogs get dizzy in the car?

Dogs get dizzy in the car as much as people. Not being accustomed to travel, eating just before leaving or not being calm and relaxed They are more than enough reasons. However, "canine dizziness during travel is even more frequent among puppies"explains veterinarian Kathy Diamond, of the VIN professional veterinary information network. The reason is that the ears of puppies, such as human children, have not yet developed. Therefore, they are also less efficient when Try to keep the feeling of balance.

How are dog dizziness?

Dogs do not speak, so they cannot tell you that they are dizzy. And, in addition, they are experts in hiding their pain. However, there are a number of signs that betray if you feel nauseous and feel like vomiting.

Dizziness symptoms include inactivity, apathy, anxiety and stress, repeated yawning, excessive gasping and drooling, as well as vomiting.

Luckily there are some tricks to control the dizziness of dogs during car trips: from accommodating the vehicle for your needs, to using anti-dizziness medications.

Trick 1. Comfortable dogs with the car

"Dizzy dogs are usually little accustomed to travel"says veterinarian Ana Beck. These animals find the car a strange space. That is why it is so important before leaving to try to get the dog to gradually become familiar with the vehicle.

The trick is to get him to associate the trip with a positive experience. "We can put inside the travel carrier, or in the back area if the can is large, its quilt and favorite toys. In this way the car will be a more pleasant space for him, "says the veterinarian.

Another tip is to invite the four-legged friend to get into the vehicle from time to time and smell it and inspect it calmly. You can also make short journeys, if you have already got used to the car.

Trick 2. Offer you a relaxed trip

Traveling relaxed is important for the dog. That's why it's so important walk and play for a good while before of embarking on the journey, as well as showing a calm tone of voice once you enter the car. "If the dog gets nervous, and we respond with shouts or an impatient tone of voice, our dog's anxiety will increase," adds Ana Beck. Therefore, keep calm, lower the volume of the radio and try to ignore the howling of the animal, if it is stressed, are key against the dog's dizziness.

Further, stop every two hours and take the can to play -with care and leash-, open the windows a little and try to make the dog look forward They are other small tips that also reduce your dizziness.

Trick 3. When to eat?

Copious food is not a good travel companion either for dogs, let alone if they tend to get dizzy. Therefore, experts recommend that before embarking on a long car trip with the animal, it maintains a small fast. "Ideally, do not eat for two or three hours before to make the trip, in this way at least we will prevent the dog from vomiting, "adds the expert.

Tricks 4. Medications against dog dizziness

Veterinarians advise against using drugs against dog dizziness, unless they are necessary. The reason is that dogs can get used to these drugs and even create some dependence on them.

The convenient thing is that, before traveling, go to the canine doctor's office and consult him For this problem. Only then will the veterinarian be able to prescribe the most suitable anti-dizziness medication for the animal. There are of three types: so that the dog does not vomit, against the stress of the dog and, finally, those that cause the animal to fall asleep during the trip.

There are treatments that can prevent your pet from having a bad time when traveling. Ask your veterinarian for advice so that everyone can enjoy the holidays.

HeDizziness in the car in dogs is a very frequent problem and a common consultation in veterinary clinics, as it can limit the mobile>

There are several factors that make both them and we get dizzy when we travel. On the one hand, the processing of the information received by the brain, sight and proprioceptive system (which allows us to know our position) is confusing and contradictory (we are still but everything moves around). The brain interprets that this information is wrong and activates defense mechanisms through dizziness and vomiting. It may also be due to balance problems originating in the ear.

In our pets, these factors They can be mixed with anxiety. And if they have had a bad experience, it is likely that in successive trips they will be fearful and the picture will get worse. "Animals get dizzy just like humans by movement. The balance system in the inner ear is disturbed due to the phenomena of driving as well as the movement of the dog itself inside the vehicle. That is why it is important that it be as still as possible inside the cabin. Also, the mood also influences. The more anxiety, the greater the likelihood of getting dizzy, "says veterinarian Felix Vallejo, of The Cat's Smile clinic in Madrid.

Is it just anxiety?

When a dog gets dizzy in the car drooling, panting, may be nervous and may vomit, symptoms that can be confused with an anxiety problem. "To address this problem, the first thing we must distinguish is whether it is dizziness or fear, since the treatment will be different," recalls veterinarian and animal behavior expert Adriana Marmol, from the Triavet clinic, in Sant Cugat del Vallés.

If it is a behavior problem, Ideally, we will gradually get used to traveling by car. For example, making short journeys at the beginning and gradually increasing the distance. Also, we must ensure that the animal does not conceive of it as a punishment, nor always associate it with something negative (such as getting in the car just to go to the vet). Ideally, the pet anticipates that something good will be waiting for him if he gets into our vehicle. Taking you to places where you have fun or rewards can help you overcome fear.

During the journey, you have to say soft and affectionate words to make him feel safe. "It is also advisable not to move, so it will be useful to use special car carriers ", says Felix Vallejo. Of course, you must always be properly subject to approved systems to avoid annoyance.

Kinetic dizziness

Scientific dizziness, that is, that which occurs in the car, occurs largely in dogs. At least 75% of them suffer. It can be distinguished from anxiety by observation: if your dog was calm and happy before getting into the car and, when it starts or after a while, vomits, it is likely to be motion sickness.

If a puppy suffers, it is more likely to continue to suffer from this disorder in adulthood. But limit displacements or leave him in a residence It doesn't have to be the only solution, since there are remedies that can tackle this problem and allow owners and their pets to enjoy vacations or weekends outside.

Dizziness medications

There are different drugs to treat dizziness in dogs "In the past, we only had those who slightly reassured the animal to prevent movement (today we can also use them if the degree of anxiety is very high). However, we currently have medications that inhibit the vomiting center at the brain level , and that do not depress your mood. We also have more natural remedies. In any case, the treatment provided must be supervised and prescribed by a veterinarian, "says Felix Vallejo.

  • Antiemetics: They are the most used. They prevent and avoid nausea and vomiting and make the animal feel better during the trip. They do not produce drowsiness, they can be given to puppies from 4 months and they are tolerated very well. In addition, its action usually lasts about twelve hours.
  • Antiemetics and sedatives: In addition to avoiding vomiting, they have a sedative and depressant effect. They cannot be administered in puppies nor is it advisable for older dogs or those with any health problems to take them.
  • Pheromones: they mimic the pheromones that the female secretes to reassure the puppies, therefore, it has a calming action on the animals. There are different ways of administration for the car (collar or spray).
  • Natural medicine: these are sedative treatments that do not depress the central nervous system of the dog. Examples of this are "green tea extracts (L-theonine) or those of Kava," says Vallejo.


Finally, if you are traveling with your dog by car, do not forget that it can become an oven with heat. The vehicle temperatureIn fact, you can double the exterior even if it is in the shade. A heat stroke is a very dangerous accident for your pet that can compromise his life leading to death.

Therefore, never leave your dog or cat inside the cabin, even with the windows open, with water or even if you think you're only going to be absent for a few minutes. In the event that you see an animal in a dangerous situation, you should immediately call 091, the Police phone number, but do not take a picture and break the glass, as recommended in a derogatory hoax>

В © ВЎHOLA! The total or partial reproduction of this report and its photographs is prohibited, even citing their origin.

Why does my dog ​​get dizzy in the car?

This occurs due to the lack of adaptation of our dog or cat to the movement of the vehicle during the trip and is usually aggravated if there are several curves on the road. In addition, there are other factors that also influence the quality of the trip such as fear or stress to the trip. All this is what will cause our partner some anxiety, agitation, nausea and finally vomiting. Dizziness during the trip is much more common in puppies, since their ears are still immature and are not well adapted to the movement, so they will not maintain balance. We, at the clinic, meet weekly with puppies who come to vaccinate with an excess of drool or who have directly vomited during the journey (it is common).

Surely many people avoid taking your pet to avoid going through this bad drink, but shouldn't it be easier? Does your dog have to miss the pleasure of walking in a different environment? Today there are several ways to deal effectively with this problem, but in these cases it is best to consult a veterinarian before trying to search in forums for miraculous products that may endanger your health.

How to prevent my dog ​​from getting dizzy in the car and enjoy the trip?

If you have a puppy, you are still in time to gradually adapt it to the car and prevent it from being so disastrous to travel with it in the future. The first step is to get him used to the car without the engine running, putting him to eat, playing inside or even getting him used to sleeping for a while inside. Once this is done, I recommend that whenever you can, take it with you in the car. Try to be on an empty stomach and adapt as soon as possible to go in a carrier or with a seat belt (the medium that you prefer to carry in the future). In these cases, it helps to put their favorite toy or blanket that they usually have so that the smell is more familiar and does not see it as something totally different. It is advisable to start with short walks, avoid as far as you can, make the curves sharply and at the end of the journey give a prize (caresses, treats and even a bit of play), in this way you will associate the ride in the car with something positive at the end. When you have been doing it several times, you will easily get into the car waiting for your later reward.

During the trip

The symptoms of dizziness vary from dog to dog. For example, some may simply vomit directly without showing any other signal. However, the presence of one or more of the following symptoms suggests that your dog may feel dizzy when traveling:

  • Excess saliva (excessive drooling)
  • Panting, swallowing, licking lips
  • Restlessness, anxiety, tremor
  • Want to vomit
  • Vomiting

How to habituate an adult dog so he doesn't get dizzy in the car?

If you already have an older dog who is not used to traveling by car, I would ask for a little patience, in these cases they also require a little prior education if you are going to take a long trip.

Here are some tips to get your dog used to the car and thus prevent it from getting dizzy, getting nervous, suffering from stress or even vomiting:

⁃ Dogs must travel comfortably in the car to avoid anxiety. It is important to familiarize the dog with the car little by little before the trip (as we would if it were a puppy). The trick is to get him to associate the trip with a positive experience. If we use a carrier to carry it, we must place it to prevent it from moving during the trip and giving blows. It also helps that we introduce your favorite toy to make it more enjoyable. Ideally, do a previous education, let your dog get into the car from time to time to smell it and get acquainted with it, obtaining a prize later. Once you are comfortable and calmly you can go on short walks and increase the distance progressively.

⁃ Offer you a relaxed trip. Therefore it is very important to tire them previously. Take a good walk before embarking on the trip and thus release all the energy that has accumulated and will be much more relaxed during the trip. In these cases, you must try to remain calm at all times, speak with a soft and relaxed tone of voice and try to ignore the howls and whining that you can make. If we respond to them we could empower them and if we talk to them abruptly, they could associate getting in the car with an unpleasant experience.

⁃ It is very important to stop every two or three hours to get him to play and pee. In these cases, as the DGT also recommends, we must stop to hydrate and clear ourselves, it will be something very good for everyone.

⁃ It is recommended that before embarking on a long car trip with the animal, the animal maintains a small fast. Ideally, they should not eat two or three hours before making the trip to prevent the dog from vomiting. And above all, avoid copious food or large portions.

⁃ As a last option, if after doing all of the above we do not get a relaxed trip, there are anti-dizziness medications that help it not be something so traumatic. Depending on the drug, there are several options, there are drugs that prevent vomiting, and other products that cause muscle relaxation and avoid part of that anxiety. In these cases, you would have to go through your veterinary center to find out which is the best option, since they are veterinary prescription products. You already have all the necessary information so… Have a good trip.

Dizziness shared in the car

The fact of dizziness in the car is as common in our dogs as among people. It is estimated that this discomfort affects 25% of dogs. After dizziness, many dogs tend to vomit in the car.

Puppies tend to be the most affected by this problem, just like babies, due to the immaturity of their hearing system, which makes it difficult to maintain balance.

Before leaving home to the chosen destination, we must be very clear about the reasons for the dizziness of our dogs, the symptoms and how to deal with them.

Why do dogs get dizzy?

Among the reasons why our dog can get dizzy during a car ride, are the following:

  • It is the first time that you travel by car and you are not used to it, the vehicle is a strange place for the dog.
  • We have fed him just before going on a trip.
  • Our dog feels altered for some reason.

Symptoms before dizziness

As your dog cannot tell you that he is not well to undertake a trip, you must observe it carefully in search of the signs that alert you of a possible dizziness.

If you are getting dizzy and feel nauseous, you may experience these symptoms:

With these signals, it is possible that finally you can vomit in the car. Therefore, it is we who have to detect the signs that he is not well.

1. Visit to the veterinarian

Is this the first trip with your furry? Then, you should take it to the veterinarian to advise you about the possible administration of anti-dizziness drugs. These drugs can be to induce sleep, reduce stress or prevent vomiting.

The doctor may not find it necessary, but it is always better to contrast all doubts you have about it with the veterinarian. Keep in mind that it is he who has enough knowledge to prescribe the right medication against canine dizziness.

Another option is natural remedies, without side effects, such as anti-stress drops, which are used by massaging certain areas of the dog's body (such as pads or the outside of the ears).

2. The proper way to travel

It is essential that you know where to place your dog so that the journey becomes as bearable as possible.

Our veterinarian, Carlos Rodríguez, tells us in a didactic way in the video entitled “The best way to travel by car with your dog”.

We summarize them: the little ones in a carrier and the big ones with a petral and their corresponding hooks.

You have more information on the topic in “Tips for traveling with your dog”

3. Eat several hours before going on a trip

Often, the best tricks are based on common sense, so we can apply to our dogs what is advisable for people:

  • Avoid overeating shortly before heading.
  • As it is better to prevent nausea and vomiting, it is best to feed and drink our dog about 3-4 hours before starting the trip.

4. Relax and harmony

During the journey, we must avoid all kinds of nerves and stridencies. To achieve the right relaxing climate inside the car, we can do the following:

  • Walk and play with your dog a few hours before leaving, this way he will calm down and feel happy.
  • Once in the car, you should not hear screaming or shrill tones.
  • We will try to choose radio stations with harmonious music, chill out type, with a rather low volume.
  • If we notice that our hairy is restless, we must remain calm, ignore its barking and not stress it with signs of nervousness on our part.
  • With the windows ajar and looking forward, we can reduce possible dizziness of the dog.

5. Next stop ...

Frequently, dizziness is related to the number of hours in progress, therefore, before leaving we must be very clear that we must make frequent stops.

  • It is essential to stop the car every two hours, in a safe place, so that the dog can do his needs, drink water, run and play ... always on the leash and watching that he does not go out on the road.

6. Comfortable and cozy atmosphere

That the dog feels that the car is a projection of the home and feels comfortable inside is essential to keep stress at bay that can lead to dizziness.

The goal is that, before going on a trip, our dog gets used to getting in and out of the vehicle without fear, to associate the trip with something good. To achieve this, we can resort to strategies such as:

  • Let the dog get in the car several times, so he sniffs it and becomes familiar with it.
  • Place your favorite blanket and toy inside the car. When the dog goes up, down and stays in the car with total confidence, it is time to go on short journeys, of a few minutes, to get used to the movement of the vehicle.
  • Remember also that, for dogs, the comfort temperature inside the vehicle must be around 20 degrees.
  • In summer, be very careful with the dreaded heat stroke inside the car. You will be interested to read the points on this topic in our post "How to avoid a heat stroke in dogs?"

In addition to taking into account all these tips, do not forget to caress and pamper your hairy, with these gestures, surely you will have a crazy desire to undertake the next trip.

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Before the trip

Dogs quickly learn that car trips are uncomfortable, so they can begin to show signs of anxiety as soon as they realize they are going to start a journey. Some vomit in the car at the start of the trip and others do so even before putting them in the car.

What can I do to make my dog ​​enjoy the trip?

  • Gradually use your dog to ride in the car.
  • Keep the windows slightly open so that your dog can enjoy some fresh air during the trip.
  • Drive carefully and avoid any unnecessary braking or acceleration.
  • Make sure the temperature is not too hot or too cold in the car.
  • Make regular stops so your dog can walk and drink some water.
  • Avoid stress during the trip as much as possible. That your dog remembers the trip as a positive experience so that it is pleasant to get in the car in next trips
  • Adequate medication to prevent symptoms

However, keep in mind that these tips alone may not be enough to prevent our dog from getting dizzy.

Behavior Modification

Behavior modification consists of trying to accustom the dog to your car gradually, gradually increasing the amount of time spent inside it. This approach may take time and not achieve the desired results in the short term.

The best way to start is the combination of the two methods, getting used to making him stay in the car while you play, distracting and rewarding him, to gradually start making trips of a few minutes, increasing time very gradually. Using the medicines for motion sickness as soon as the trip is somewhat longer preventing the discomfort from appearing and relating the car to dizziness.