Managing a Car Sick Puppy

Give OTC Meds Prior to Travel


Lu Lu, the 4 month old miniature poodle, has responded well to your house breaking tips and continues to be a happy, energetic, entertaining puppy but she doesn’t do well on road trips.  She frequently vomits and doesn’t appear to be enjoying herself at all.  Is there anything we could do to ameliorate her symptoms so we can get on with our ‘new life on the road with Lu Lu’?


Dr. Nichol:

Please say Lu Lu isn’t driving when this happens. Gripping a steering wheel without opposable thumbs is hard enough; it has to be a lot worse with the wheel all slimy after she’s tossed her dog cookies. Talk about distracted driving…


Lu Lu is just a kid; her vestibular system (inner ear) hasn’t fully matured. There are ways of helping her but nothing will make a difference once her sense of equilibrium has gone squirrelly. Give any of the following remedies 1-2 hours prior to travel.


Dramamine (dimenhydrinate), the old standby: give 1/2 tablet to a cat or a small dog, a full tablet for medium sized dogs, 2 tablets to large dogs. Antivert, Bonine, D-Vert or Dramamine II are all brand names for meclizine – even better for many pets. Small dogs and cats should get one 12.5 mg tablet. Give two tablets to a medium or large dog.


These drugs are reliable but you can go au natural and feed ginger snaps (no one has a reliable cookie dose) or give 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of fresh grated ginger. Bon appetit!