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Help Your Dog Win His Motion Sickness Battle

Your golden retriever Dusty has always thought car rides were the best treat in the world. They’re even better than the to-die-for gourmet snacks he only receives on special occasions. Recently, however, your one-year-old canine housemate has begun reacting strangely to his car trips. He whines and whimpers almost from the beginning; and once he even threw up on your leather back seat. You know dogs can suffer from motion sickness on car, boat, and plane trips. You’d like your Wine Country veterinarian to determine if Dusty’s the latest victim. You’d also like your poor pooch to get some relief.

Unpleasant, Progressive Symptoms

If your unfortunate dog has motion sickness, he’ll show progressively more dramatic symptoms as time goes on. First, he’ll repeatedly lick his lips. Following that, he’ll drool profusely; and then he’ll yawn and moan like a fool. Next, he’ll sit there like a statue. If you haven’t caught on, you’ll wake up when Dusty upchucks on the seat. If he’s really in distress, he might defecate on your vehicle’s floor.

Potential Sources of the Misery

Your canine housemate’s intestinal upheaval might correspond with his early adult age. He’s still establishing his sense of equilibrium, making him more susceptible to motion sickness. However, there’s a reasonable chance that he’ll outgrow this unfortunate reaction as he progresses through his adult dog years.

Perhaps your impressionable pooch previously had a horrendous travel experience. It might have been that awful weekend spent with your nasty old cat, who threatened your dog from the cat carrier. Whenever Dusty climbs into the car, he’s afraid that feline bully is waiting.

Straightforward Diagnosis

First, your vet will rule out a neurologic or behavioral cause for your dog’s problem. Once those are eliminated, and he hears about Dusty’s travel woes, he’ll likely identify motion sickness as the culprit.

Several-Part Solution

Your vet will probably recommend several tactics. Open the car windows while you travel, as that should lower the interior air pressure and reduce Dusty’s stomach upset. Bring along his favorite toys, and stop frequently for potty breaks. Don’t feed your pooch for several hours before each ride, as that will empty his stomach and reduce the chances of vomiting.

Also, ask your Wine Country veterinarian if a targeted medication might help. If your dog seems to have motion sickness, call us for expert advice.

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