Whether your furry friend travels with you on a regular basis or he only hops in the car for trips to the vet, he must learn to be a good passenger. A dog that paces around in the car is a distraction, and a danger to you, himself and others on the road. One way to keep everyone safe is by using a seat belt harness, which allow you to buckle your dog in while driving so stays put. The downside of using a harness is that some dogs, when their movement is restricted, will chew nervously at the seat belt.
Tip #1 - Ease your dog's anxiety about riding in the car. He may be chewing on the seat belt because he is nervous. If his only experience with car rides is through trips to the vet, it makes sense that he gets anxious when put him into the car. Get into the habit of taking your dog on quick trips, driving around the block without even stopping, or driving down the road and taking him for a quick walk before loading back up and going home.
Tip #2 - Provide him with a chew toy for the ride. Nervous chewing doesn't have to be destructive. Get a chew toy that either has a rope attached or has a way to attach a rope so you can secure it in the car. It's no fair providing a toy that rolls out of puppy's reach as soon as you start moving.
Tip #3 - Use a taste deterrent to keep your pup from chewing on the seat belt. Dampen a tissue with taste deterrent, which is available at most box stores and pet stores. Offer it to your dog. He undoubtedly will recoil at the taste, which is good. Now, apply the deterrent to your seat belts. When he rides in the car, he will recognize the smell of the taste deterrent as something he wants to avoid.
By Stephanie Dube Dwilson
About the Author
With features published by media such as Business Week and Fox News, Stephanie Dube Dwilson is an accomplished writer with a law degree and a master's in science and technology journalism. She has written for law firms, public relations and marketing agencies, science and technology websites, and business magazines.