By Mark Whitehouse
Thursday, 19 March 2009
My dog gets worried at the prospect of car journeys to shoots. How can I overcome this?
MARK WHITEHOUSE SAYS: Travel sickness can be caused by different factors.
For many puppies their first experience of travel sickness can be associated with unpleasantness, such as leaving his/her litter mates for the first time, or with a trip to the vets for their first vaccination.
Unfortunately this can become a type of phobia and if not dealt with properly can result in many months of discomfort for both parties, and when a young gun dog produces lots of saliva this will always result in vomiting.
There is no quick fix for this problem and young gun dogs must be conditioned to associate all travelling with pleasantness.
With my own gun dogs, which are all kenneled, the older ones associate travelling with a training lesson and my puppies associate travelling with a play and exercise session.
I encourage all my young gun dogs to jump in and out of the dog box and I always give puppies treats when they have done this.
I then put the gun dog box inside my vehicle and to begin with I will just do short trips checking at all times that there is no discomfort or uneasiness amongst them.
Over a period of time I will increase the travelling distance, always ensuring the gun dogs are not apprehensive or nervous.
When transporting gun dogs I prefer to use a travelling box with solid sides as this will stop the dogs from looking out, and this also helps to prevent motion sickness.
Always ensure there is plenty of fresh air in your vehicle at all times.
Most young gun dogs do grow out of this problem once their training starts regularly and then trips to shooting days become more enjoyable for all.
MARK WHITEHOUSE SAYS: This is an unpleasant proble...
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