Any tips for Toker?

Discussion in 'Dog Training Forum' started by Doberluv, Mar 27, 2010.

  1. Doberluv

    Doberluv Active Member

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    As most of you know, Toker is not technically my dog, although she's been living with me for a few years. Part of the time her owner, my son lived with me. He no longer does and lives where he can not have a dog. But near the end of April, he will be moving to where he can have her and he will take her away. :(

    Here's the thing: She goes with me frequently to Seattle and back again. She's a somewhat intense dog. Although she likes to ride in the car, (jumps in any chance she gets, loves to go with me) she is quite reactive to certain things, like cows, big trucks if there haven't been a lot of trucks going by and if she sees a dog out the car window. (not otherwise) LOL. If there are plenty of trucks zooming by, she gets use to them. She barks and looks out the window a lot and rarely lies down to rest and it's a 7 hour drive, including stopping a few times. But that particular trip, she is really quite all right and pretty comfortable.

    When my ex and I took a drive to Port Angeles in Washington, she was so stressed. She barked at everything and could not relax. She'd frantically look out the left window, then the right, reacting so much more than on the Seattle to Idaho trip.

    I can't fit a big enough crate in my Subaru.

    I have to pick my son up because he doesn't have a car there where he has been living. This is about a 5 hour trip and one that Toker is unfamiliar with. (like the Port Angeles trip was) I have another car, which will be for him, an Explorer, which I never drive because it uses much more gas than the Subaru, but that one is big enough for my big crate and the Chi's crate.

    Toker is not crate trained. LOL. But she doesn't mind the crate. So, I thought I better get her more use to it in the meantime before I go, in about 3+ weeks. I have been feeding her in there, giving her special treats, and have advanced to closing the door on her for about 5 minutes. She just lies there, doesn't get worked up or anything. But I don't want her to feel sad or uncomfortable when I take this unfamiliar and rather long trip. I thought soon, I'd work up to taking short trips, just around here...like 5, then 10 minutes, then 20 minutes.

    Can you think of anything else I should be doing to help ward off any big stress she may have? See...I thought being in the crate in the car would prevent her from seeing all this outside stimuli that stresses her out or maybe not even bad stress (she's not afraid I don't think) but maybe it's some kind of prey drive stress thing. I only have about 3 weeks to make a really positive, hopefully not too boring association with the crate, which she'll have to ride in for about 10 hours total on one day, then the next day, another 7 hours. We're going from one place in Idaho to my house, then the next day to western Washington. Uggggg. :eek: She will, of course get chances to get out for breaks. The Chi's will also be with us in their smaller crate. I just want to be sure there isn't something else I can do in this time to reduce any stress she might have from all this driving.

    What about a toke for Toker? :D J/K. What about some sedative type thing from the vet?
     
  2. Maura

    Maura New Member

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    On your short trips you will be able to see how she behaves in the car when in a crate. She may become very upset. If it isn't working, put a towel over the crate so she can't see and she may settle right down. You can also give her a big bone to chew on as a distraction when you head out on the long drive.
     
  3. lizzybeth727

    lizzybeth727 New Member

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    I think the crate is a great idea; it might also be good to cover it with a blanket so that she can't see out, or can only see straight ahead or something.

    I would probably also get sedatives for her, or at the very least use calming pheromones. Just be careful if you use sedatives, I'm sure you know this but some sedatives only make it so that she has a hard time moving and LOOKS relaxed, while her mind is still perfectly "normal," so that could freak her out even more.

    I moved to TX with my cat, which was a 16-hour car ride (over two days) where she had to be in a crate. She's stressed in a crate, not to dangerous levels but stressed nontheless, and so I got her a calming suppliment that I put in her food. It was years ago and I don't remember exactly what it was, but I got it at a pet store; it was a liquid, made for cats, and you give her a few drops every 12 hours or something. Anyway, something like that should be easy to find, and you could test it out before the trip to see how much it would help, before actually getting Toker drugs.
     
  4. darkchild16

    darkchild16 We are Home.

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    Maybe try Bachs Flower Essence. I know Rescue remedy is for anxiety but not sure what other fomulas they have that would work better. You can get it at a pet store or human health food store or order it. Thats what we use for sci when he has a seizure. I dunno about the crate never used one in a car because Ive never had anything big enough.
     
  5. Doberluv

    Doberluv Active Member

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    Thanks guys. I appreciate that. Her stress is as if she's not upset in a bad way. It's more like she's just excitable and anticipatory. I don't get the feeling she's having a rotten time or anything. She just drives me nuts mostly. LOL. (Oh yeah...I forgot. I'm already nuts. :p) I think if she were to have a sedative, it would have to be something that is an anti-anxiety med, that actually makes her not care about what's going on. But I'm hoping if she can get conditioned to the crate and maybe putting a towel or blanket over it, but not entirely over it, that might help. I think it would be super boring riding in a crate that long with utterly no stimulation at all. "Can't we just have a happy medium Toker?" LOL. I'll try a bone too. Thanks!
     
  6. darkchild16

    darkchild16 We are Home.

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    The Rescue Remedy is a anit anxiety IIRC. I know it helped walker whenhe got OVERLY excited to be in the car and helps my moms car sick dog. Its all natural and doesnt knock them out. We make sure we have it with us for trips, mostly because sometimes they are GREAT in the bar the others they need that little extra help. Just a thought. Cant hurt to do the crate and keep it on hand. It is ridiculously inexpensive where I got it at least. 5 bucks for a tin of 20 gummies or something. These were the human ones though i didnt buy the "dog" ones.
     
  7. Doberluv

    Doberluv Active Member

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    Okay D.C. I think I'll try that Rescue Remedy. I wouldn't really want to knock her out. I'd like to get knocked out, but have to drive. LOL.

    Thanks!
     
  8. darkchild16

    darkchild16 We are Home.

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  9. Criosphynx

    Criosphynx New Member

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    the calming cap? They are made mostly for car trips.
     
  10. darkchild16

    darkchild16 We are Home.

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    It was the pastille now Im glad I read that. We dont give them many I still have the original tin I didnt even think about the Xylitol :yikes:

    But we do have the liquid now too and thats all we use it for an after Scis seizures. It has been shown to lessen the effects of it. IDK but I know he freaks out less if given at the onset of one.
     
  11. sammgirl

    sammgirl ACoops favorite

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    I agree with rescue remedy. That stuff works wonders. Also, fill a kong with very rewarding stuff so that she has something to do while in the crate.
     
  12. Doberluv

    Doberluv Active Member

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    I have been putting the Kong with goodies in it for her. And I must go get that Rescue Remedy. At least she's not fearful. She goes right in and when I close the door, she just takes it in stride. But that's in the house. LOL. I think it helps that she's like 9 or 10 years old. The crate is new to her, but she's had a lot of new things throughout her life that she had to adjust to, so hopefully this will be a piece of cake for her. Thanks guys!
     

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