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Most Dogs love Car rides and you may not realize but a simple ride for you is a moment of bliss for the pooch. There are several reasons at play for the dog to feel overjoyed at the prospect of you and him/her jumping in the vehicle for some palatable & uninterrupted fun.
Car Rides can release feel good hormones like endorphin and oxytocin in dogs
One way to look at car rides is that the pet links it with positive things happening to it. One of the reasons for the ‘feel good factor’ is you being present with the dog. Canines are most secure when they are present next to their human family pack. This could mean being involved in almost every activity of the family. Long drives can offer the desired comfort derived from healthy bonding. Positive experiences and rewards trigger the brain to secrete happy hormones in living beings. The time spent with its humans in a car is one such driver in the release of happy hormones in a pet, motivating it to repeat the action time and again.
Anything that will satiate the canine’s fundamental wants of food, water, warm home, recreation & socialization is directly linked to feelings of pleasure. Car rides definitely fulfill more than one of these basic needs.
A sensory opportunity to explore nature and smells in a novel way
When you walk your dog you may have noticed the pet sniffing around as if in search of exciting discoveries. This is a dog’s way of interacting with its surroundings. A car ride is just another medium that opens the dog’s world to newer and fascinating things. The car window is its ticket to a different landscape, gazing at the beautiful locales, birds, cars zooming past, walkers on the pavements, and absorbing different smells all at once.
Coming back to a dog’s strong sense of smell and the love for it, your pooch is gifted with around 3,000,000 olfactory receptors in its nose. The power to detect scents is the dog’s main sense and they are inherent sniffers.
Image : www.nwitimes.com
Study reveals: Car rides give rise to the natural feeling of hunting
According to Kevin Behan (a pioneer in the natural dog training movement) dogs enjoy riding in cars due to a sense of elation & excitement common to hunting. He further proposed that the moving car causes a motion in its passengers occurring at the exact same time. The passengers here are pack members swinging together along the curves of the road and jolting along the bumps. He links these synchronized motions to activating emotions in dogs that are similar to the sensations felt by them while they move together with their pack to hunt.
The dog must not be allowed to stick its head out or hang its paws out of the window. Also have the dog safely restrained to not only ensure its safety but also to prevent it from intruding into your focus while you drive. If you own a small breed dog, purchase an elevated seat to enable it to gaze through the window. A harness that works like a seat belt is a good choice for securing small as well large dogs. Some big car owners can separate the back of the car with a mesh guard/barrier and offer the dog especially large sized dogs enough room to move around during a long road trip.