new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

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Jen
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new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby Jen » Tue Mar 29, 2016 10:07 pm

We bought a minivan especially so that we can take Bella with us as many places as we can. But now we think that she doesn't like it much. She used to pant in our old minivan when we drove around, but at the time we didn't know much and didn't think too hard about it.

Well, after four years of no van, she's back to panting, which she doesn't do in our Civic. Plus, she was very reluctant to get in after the first 3 times and this recent trip she almost had to be pushed in because she just planted her feet and refused.

So, I'm wondering if she gets carsick riding in a crate in a minivan but doesn't riding loose in a Civic? Does that seem like a possibility? Is there anything we can do to help her get over it? I'll be very sad if the car we bought for her can't actually be used for her. :hmm: I tried moving the crate closer to the front of the van where maybe it isn't as bouncy, but that didn't seem to work. She just looks very uncomfortable. Pressed up against the front of the crate and panting. :(

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby JudyL » Tue Mar 29, 2016 11:09 pm

1) Is she all the way in the back? What about leaving the back seats in position and having her ride there with a harness & tether arrangement instead of crating? I know, not as safe but she would be more forward in the vehicle. Maybe she has trouble being crated since loose in the Civic was different for her?

2) What about a homeopathic or something to help with the motion sickness if you decide that is her trouble?

3) Maybe your DH will have to ride in the back. Just kidding, or not. :lol:

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby Amanda » Wed Mar 30, 2016 12:15 am

Oh no! That is really interesting. Maybe she just really doesn't like being crated where she can't see. I know when I get seasick on a boat, it helps to watch the horizon. And in a car, it's much better if I can see the turn before it comes. If I am in the back and can't see out the front window it makes me more car sick. I don't know if that is a correlation that can be expanded to a dog, but maybe?

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby whiteboxerboy » Wed Mar 30, 2016 4:59 am

I get more carsick in the backseat in minivans, too. Sometimes even in the front seat.

Ditto what Amanda said about being able to see the horizon. For me it helps to be able to see out of all of the windows and definitely seeing turns before they happen.

Is her crate on the floor or on the seat? I'd think the best set up would be with her crate facing forward on the seat so she can see out of all of the windows. This probably sounds really random but this is something that will make me sick immediately - if the sunroof is open then all of the windows HAVE to be open a little bit as well. OMG there is nothing worse than the sunroof being open w/o windows open. :sick:

poor Bella. maybe you can do some nosework stuff in there with the van parked and all doors open? ugh, i'm light headed and sick to my stomach just thinking about riding in a van..... i avoid it whenever possible.

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby emmas_mom » Wed Mar 30, 2016 7:27 am

I agree with the posters above re Bella not being able to see the horizon etc in her crate, compared to when she road in the civic. One possibility that would still allow for her to be crated, if the van has sufficient height, would be to build a platform for under her crate so it raises the crate to where her head can look out the window.
Also, I've found some dogs ride better facing the back window in a van, and others ride better facing forward. Generally, when I used to have a van, my dogs seemed to prefer the rear-facing position (which would make me totally carsick if I had to ride that way!).
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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby MaisyPancakes » Wed Mar 30, 2016 9:26 am

Awww, sorry, you guys!! I get carsick sometimes, too, and I would definitely get sick if I were confined/vision blocked in any way. Is she able to sort of stretch her neck out and her head up in her crate? I'm sure dogs are different, but sometimes I have to tilt my head up or to the side a little in order to not get sick (the inner ear thing).

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby Jen » Wed Mar 30, 2016 11:43 am

To answer in no particular order:

If she's in a crate, she has to be on the floor. Her crate is a standard 42", which barely fits her.

Mostly she has been in the back. The back row is fold flat and her crate is on top of those. But last night I tumbled the front seats and put her almost directly behind the passenger seat. She still panted and leaned forward against the front of it like she wanted out.

We really wanted her to be crated so that she can't see because part of the problem with the Civic is her absolute belief that bicyclists and people who aren't walking properly (whatever she decides that to be) and, of course, dog walkers are Evil Incarnate and that she must sound the alarm and throw herself against the windows. :hmm: It's okay when there are two of us; we scan the road and tell her to lie down if we spot the evil before she does. If there's just one of us with her, it can be almost dangerous how startling and loud she can be while you're driving. Plus, it can get a little tiring to be constantly scanning the horizon on a long road trip.

She can't really stretch her neck up in her crate, she has to stand with it ducked like she's in a room too short for her.

What sort of homeopathics are recommended? Or does ginger work? If she'll eat it.

I like the idea of a platform anyway, and maybe that could work if it is a looking outside thing.

I'm open to the idea of basically building a pen in the "back-back" but DH really worries about her being loose in the car if she's left in it (part of what we wanted to do was be able to take her with us everywhere for the nine months of the year we have no sun) because of her reactivity issues.

Thanks for the feedback, though! If anyone else has other thoughts, I'm still all ears!

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby MaisyPancakes » Wed Mar 30, 2016 12:07 pm

Ginger capsules might be easier if she may not like the taste. Or, mash ginger into bananas or something else she may like?

For homeopathy, Nux Vomica is my go-to for anything nausea or tummy-related—it always makes me feel better, and also seems to work for MP (tight tummies, lickies)! If she is also spazzy in the car, you could try something like Nerve Tonic (or Valerian if using herbs).

MP is also a barker sometimes, especially if there's something to bark at. I am usually alone driving her, so I use pizzle sticks (for continuous not-looking-out-the-window) or throw fistfuls of Joe's Os from TJ's in her general direction when I anticipate a barkfest. But, yeah, it isn't fun watching out for stuff on the road. Would she chew something for a long time, then eventually feel less trigger-happy, and have a chiller ride rest of the way?

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby Jen » Wed Mar 30, 2016 12:18 pm

Would she chew something for a long time, then eventually feel less trigger-happy, and have a chiller ride rest of the way?
Hmmm, we've never tried because we always had the two of them on a Civic backseat, which is not conducive to high-value, long-lasting treats. :p Maybe that could be an option if we raise her bed to a platform that lets her look out.

But fistfuls of treats tossed in her general direction doesn't work. Either she's so far over threshhold or she knows she can just get to them once the Evil has passed. Either way, she ignores them, barks,a nd then eats. That's why we took to asking her to lie down and not look outside. There's just no redirecting in the car.

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby MaisyPancakes » Wed Mar 30, 2016 12:42 pm

I see. Oops, I totally passed over the lie down thing—which sounds very reliable and far less involved than throwing fistful of treats!!!

I was wondering if she could do the chewies in the crate—do you think she's already too upset as soon as the ride starts to want to chew stuff?

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby Jen » Wed Mar 30, 2016 1:39 pm

I was wondering if she could do the chewies in the crate—do you think she's already too upset as soon as the ride starts to want to chew stuff?
Good question. Right now she is. Maybe I'll have her do some chewies in her crate without it moving to begin with.

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby Kathleen » Thu Mar 31, 2016 5:32 pm

Hey Jen, by the way thanks for the booties. :)
Didn't you have a raptor hood for her at one time? I've had some pretty good luck with that with giant dogs and small cars that are reactive and just can't crate. Doesn't do much for the car sickness though. Quinn was sick in my truck and not in cars. It was a real bummer.

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby UpwardDog » Thu Mar 31, 2016 11:13 pm

I only skimmed the replies, I'm sure most of these have been suggested but...
I spent a fair amount of time hanging out on the floor of my van (seats were out) on the way home from Colorado with Will. I was amazed by how much I felt the vibration through the floor. It was intense! I don't know if that is at all what bothers her, but a decent layer of foam (foam tiles?) between crate and van floor and then foam between crate and dog might help. The vibration isn't damped by reg soft material most dog beds are made of, but foam really helps.

I second the ginger capsules if you think she's having nausea. I am easily made car sick in the back seats of vehicles, but I was fine in the van if I stayed below the windows. It's a weird feeling though and might be anxiety provoking.
I would do very short trips to only super fun places for now. I would also just do van-crate games. Almost all of my dogs and fosters have started out hating going in my van at first, but once they begin to associate that van rides = hikes, that changes.

1. foam x2
2. D &CC via short fun trips and van crate games
3. ginger?
4.chewy for van rides

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby connie » Fri Apr 01, 2016 9:37 am

Haven't read the whole thread, but just want to contribute that Rowley freakin' HATES being crated in the car (a Scion XB, more of a carryall than a car). He gets anxious, won't settle, STANDS in the crate until he's ready to collapse -- it's very stressful.

I got him a seatbelt harness thingy and put the crate back in the basement. :tongue:

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Re: new van! Bella doesn't like it :(

Postby maxs_mommy » Fri Apr 01, 2016 8:55 pm

Max won't crate, period, but he also won't lie down in the car. We got the seatbelt so there's some measure of protection. I think B would lose her ability to balance around corners and things if she's crated (though I totally understand why you would want to crate her) and not being able to see, if you're prone to motion sickness would be awful. Max, while riding, looks straight out the window. He will curl up on the seat for long car rides (interstates mostly) but once you hit neighborhood/city driving he's up and looking forward. In the civic does she curl up and sleep or stand and balance?
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