Car sickness can be a common issue in many dogs, much to the dismay of owners who want to take them for rides! Usually, dogs stop getting car sick as they age and become used to traveling.
If your dog suffers from motion sickness, start with short, frequent rides around the block. You should notice his discomfort start to resolve. Better yet, drive him to the park and toss a few balls for him. This will let him know that car rides are a precursor to fun instead of just a trip to the vet's or groomer's.
But some dogs never seem to get over their motion sickness. That means they may need a little help making their car rides less traumatic - for both your dog and your upholstery! Luckily, there are a few herbs and remedies that might ease the trauma.
Herbs for Upset Tummies
These herbs may help ease upset stomachs and vomiting …
They can be given separately or in combination. (I’ll tell you how to give them a bit later.)
Herbs for Anxiety
Sometimes dogs get car sick because of nervousness and not the motion. If you think your dog's discomfort is because of anxiety, try valerian. It will help him relax and also calm the nervous stomach.
Herbs that can act as mild sedatives also include …
These can be given alone or in combination with the herbs mentioned above.
How To Give Your Dogs Herbs To Ease Car Sickness
It’s often best to use a tincture instead of dried herbs; dogs might not be able to digest enough of the dried herb to make it effective. The dosage depends on your dog and what you’re using it for, but a general rule of thumb is:
Tincture – 12 to 20 drops per 20 pounds of body weight, twice daily (this is a good starting point). Place on food or directly in the mouth.
Dried Herbs – 1 tsp per 20 pounds of body weight, twice daily (you can sprinkle it on his food).
RELATED: Can you use essential oils on your dog?
Bach Flower Remedies For Anxiety
In the early 1900s, Dr Edward Bach discovered certain flower essences can balance emotional states. Rescue Remedy is a blend of 5 Bach Flower Remedies that is helpful in stressful situations. This combination of flower essences can be given right before getting in the car to ease your dog's anxiety.
You can give Rescue Remedy to your dog directly from the bottle.
Small dogs … 2 drops
Medium to large dogs … 3 to 4 drops
Extra-large dogs … 4 drops
Give your dog 3 doses 3 to 5 minutes apart before your trip. You can give more along the way, too. You can’t overdose flower remedies.
Homeopathic Remedies for Dogs That Get Car Sick
Homeopathy is also a great option for motion sickness.
Cocculus indicus - Motion Sickness
Cocculus indicus is a homeopathic remedy you can give to your dog just before getting in the car. It’s the most popular remedy for nausea from motion sickness.
Argentum nitricum - Anxiety
Argentum nitricum is the first homeopathic remedy to consider when nausea is accompanied by nervousness and anxiety.
How To Give Homeopathic Remedies
Homeopathic dosing isn't based on weight. Give the same dose for all size dogs. To give your dog homeopathic remedies, you have three options …
- Give your dog 2 - 3 pellets.
- Crush the pellets with a spoon and drop them in some water for him to drink.
- Put the pellets in a dropper bottle and shake or pound the bottle 10 times on the palm of your hand. Put a few drops of liquid on your dog’s gums.
When you give homeopathic remedies, try not to touch the pellets … this can negate the remedy.Try your best to pop them from the cap into your dog's mouth or into the water.
You can give homeopathic remedies before you leave. I recommend you take some extras along for the ride, in case you need a second or third dose. (Dropper bottles are great for this.) Don't give remedies with food.
With a little help, and a little time, your dog may soon enjoy running errands with you, instead of waiting at home.