My ridgeback is deathly afraid of getting in the car. He's about 100 lbs, so if he doesn't want to get in there's nothing we can do about it. When we first got him we had to drive out of state to meet his breeders, so he spent the whole day in the car, and was fine w/ it. We took him places a couple times when he was 3,5, & 7 months old and he was mostly fine w/ it. We haven't needed to bring him to the vet or anywhere's else until last week (he's 1 yr old now), & he would not get in the car! We used cheese, hot dogs, & our other dogs but he would't get in. He really needed to get his shots so we went to the vet to get some pills to make him calm down & be more manageable, but they took a while to work (vet said to use 4 pills b/c of his size). Anyways they made him sleepy & relaxed, but he still wouldn't get in the car. The vet said he can make house calls if necessary which is great, but I will be moving in a few weeks!! How am I supposed to move him?? He is usually very laid back, but when he sees the car doors are open he freaks out. Please help me.
everytime you try to get the dog in the car and do not succeed the dog succeeds thus reiforcing his behavior. this is what i would do. i would put a halti on him. you will have control then. i would clip an 8 ft leash to the halti. take the dog to the car. you crawl through the car and let the dog fight til he is worn out then try to pupp him on through. this is gonna be a dramatic production. but no matter how you do it the dog must end up in the car. then the dog learns what i do does not work. he may try more antics before submitting. if you are not familiar with a halti. the dog may protest it at first but wil get used to it. i would put it on him for awhile before trying anything.
Do you mean a body halter? I tried everyting but that, but he's very strong and stubborn. I think he's just scared of it because he's the least aggressive dog I've ever known but when I got him up to the car and tried to pick him up, he growled and bared his teeth. I can understand that he's scared but he should know by now that I wouldn't put him in a place where he would get hurt. Next time I'll keep trying to get him in, but I don't want him to hurt himself.
when you took your dog out places, does that mean just the vet or someplace he might otherwise not like? He might be associating car rides with anal probes and needles. (lol) I know that's what happened with Syrus. He hated the vet so much, and we had to take him all the time when he was a pup for demodectic mange, that he soon realized that going in car = getting poked by vet. So we had to trick him by going to the park first, then going to the vet, followed by a treat from mcdonald's. lol - soooo spoiled.
We only had to take him to the vet once & that was just for one shot & to get weighed. Nothing bad ever happened to him at the vets or anywhers else we took him. The other times were to show him off to family since ridgebacks are kind of rare & most people have never seen one. He never liked riding in the car, but he never kept us from getting him inside like he does now. I'm pretty sure it's the doors.
If you cant do 100 pounds of dog yourself get two people.
I'd left under his front legs and drag him in.
If not, get someone under front legs and someone under belly, lift, and put into car, and seatbelt him down incase he spaze.
I have a dog who HATE HATE HATE HATE HATES the car. I once stood outside for twnety five minutes as she kicked, screamed thrashed, threw herself around, and eventually choked herself into passing out while I stood there staring at her. I then picked her up and put her into the car anyway.
Now I just pick her up under one arm, and toss her in as she screams, and lash her down or crate her. I refuse to let them win.
We have the same problem. Our Benji (90 pounds)doesn't like car rides either.
We basically walk him with the leash towards the back door of the car and my husband lifts the two front legs and body up and I push the rest of Benji in. We didn't find a better way to get him in the car, but it works.
In the beginning Benji did get car sick. He finally is over that, but he still doesn't like to get in the car. When he is in the car, he is fine and lays down.
i'd agree with gunny especially as this is the exact advice that my trainer gave to me. Like other have said he may think he is going on a trip to the not so nice vets etc so each time he gets in go for short trips to somewhere where he can have a fun experience. I done this with my dobie and we mixed up trips to different places and even took him to the vets just to hang around not just for a treatment..
Harvey had this fear of the car and we learned that he HAS to go in the car no matter how much a fight he puts on..when we started it was a huge effort but he got the idea that whatever he tries is not gonna work and he is getting in that car even if we had to stand there all night. Well now he gets in no probs but still has a big sulk once hes in! Whatever you do no matter how frustrating it is your dog must never win the argument :) ~twink
***Edited By: twinkletoes on 5/19/2005 9:32:12 AM*** Reason: edit
Maybe if you had someone else to help you. You could open both doors so the dog can see through the car, It may be the fact that it looks like a box, that scares him. I have a mini schnauzer that rides anything that has wheels and then i have a large black lab that will only get in my car and only for me. He will ride in other cars but you have to pick him up and he is HEAVY!! everytime we try to get him in my husbands truck he just goes and lays down and looks at us like -- yea right. But I can open the door on my expedition and he is in the back seat just waiting to go. I guess it is what ever they are comfortable with. As you already know dogs are like our kids -- but our kids can tell us what they are scared of but a terrified shaking dog is just hard to figure out. let me know what works.. GOOD LUCK!!
My mom & I both tried to push him in from both sides of the car. We used his girlfriend, a terrier mix. Every tasty food you can imagine. 4 pills that the vet gave us to calm him down (he was literally falling asleep where he stood). It got to the point that he tried to bite me & he NEVER did that before. We considered tying his legs together, getting a muzzle, and picking him up, but we thought he might really freak out then. I seriously do not know what to do. He is one of the calmest & sweetest dogs I know, but he was willing to fight me to keep from going in the car. I need serious, desperate measures type of advice. I don't know how he got this way, but it can't continue.
A hundred pound dog is nothing! It used to take hours to get my horse in a trailer. Pick him up and put him in there. If you have a really small car maybe borrow someone elses so its maybe easier for you. I've had to help get my cousins overweight lab into the back of my car and I'll admitt it was harder since its a 2 door. I wish I could keep my dogs out of the car:)
Maybe if it's too difficult to pick him up bare and place him in, try crating him and then picking up him in the crate and putting it in the car? that would make it heavier of course, but at least youd be lifting a crate instead of a bony, squirming, animal, lol.
I guess you'll have to break down and go through the desensitization steps to get the dog used to the car. Starting with getting ready to go and rewarding him for calm behavior(put into a sit), each time getting closer and closer to the car. It could take days,
Unfortunately our car isn't large enough for a crate his size. Today we brought him outside & had him sit a little ways away from the car to get him used to seeing the doors open & close. He would watch and then get bored with it. We had him watch as we put other dogs in & out of the car so he could see that it was safe. We then brought him closer & kept doing the same thing, but I could see him flinch when the door would close. I walked him around the car with the doors open so he could see the other dogs sitting in the back seat. I thought he was feeling a little better about it because he seemed bored & unconcerned & would even sniff the doors.
After an hour of all this I thought he might be comfortable being around the car. I went and got some treats and had him sit by the open door. When he stayed there & didn't move I gave him some cheese. We did that at every door. He was fine with everything. We had been out there for over an hour, so I then took him in side to eat & we would do it all again later that afternoon.
Well, later he was just as fine with it all as he had been that morning. I could have him sit by the door & open & close it & it didn't bother him at all. I figured if he was that comfortable sitting by the opening & closing doors, then he wouldn't mind getting into the car. I walked him around a little, then told him to sit by the door. He did & I gave him some cheese. I tried to get him to jump in but he ignored me & just sat there, so me & my mom tried to pick him up, but when he realized we meant for him to get in the car he freaked out. He was like a completely different dog in seconds. I don't understand why he was ok with everything we had done, but not with getting in. I assumed it was just the doors, but he stopped flinching when they closed, & he was right next to the car. I don't know. I guess it'll never happen.