I am fortunate enough to have two dogs who not only love to travel, but who view car travel much the way I might view a trip to any Club Med: If someone offers the opportunity, jump on it, and worry about where you’re going, exactly, later. I mean, there aren’t any bad Club Meds, right?
Of course Club Med costs thousands of dollars, while a drive around town costs you a few bucks in gas. Fortunately my dogs don’t seem to get the difference. Even a short car trip to run errands is cause for celebration with them, and they are equally happy going to Hess (bonus points if they can scare the gas station guy with a good loud bark!), driving through Dairy Barn or just taking a run to my parents’ house. It’s about the journey, and a car journey is a wonderful thing in their world.
But not all dogs feel that way. Motion sickness seems to be an increasingly common ailment among dogs, and in recent weeks, I’ve spoken with three different friends whose dogs get car sick.
I feel for them, as it’s no fun traveling with a dog who throws up in the backseat.
But I probably have greater sympathy for the dogs, as I was one of those people who suffered from motion sickness for most of my childhood, and I know how awful it is.
Fortunately, motion sickness in dogs is generally easily treatable, just as it is in humans. In fact, many of the medications used for human motion sickness can also be prescribed for dogs. (I actually found this out when Lexie jumped six feet off the ground to snag a bottle of medicine from my top shelf, resulting in frantic calls to the vet. While she didn’t actually consume anything but the bottle, I learned from that particular call that my motion sickness medicine isn’t harmful to dogs, and may, in fact, be prescribed to treat dogs with similar problems).
However, before you go the drug route, you may be able to stave off motion sickness with something easily found in your spice rack: ginger.
Ginger is a great way to settle the stomach, and this is equally true for humans and canines. For years, I carried candied ginger in my purse for long drives, or trips on the LIRR where accidentally I ended up in one of the seats facing backwards.
While not all dogs will eat candied ginger, you can easily include this is a delicious home baked dog treat which may help settle your pup’s stomach for car trips. So if your car is making your dog sick, try baking up a batch of these and giving your pup a couple for the ride!
Delicious Ginger Dog Biscuits
2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 cup oatmeal
1/2 cup nonfat dry milk
3/4 cup water
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon dried ginger powder
Pre-heat oven to 300 degrees. Mix oil and water in a small bowl. In a separate bowl, combine flour, oatmeal, mil and ginger. Add the water mixture slowly to the mixed ingredients. Knead and roll out the dough on a flat surface. Cut with cookie cutters (you can find fun bone or dog-shaped cookie cutters in most craft stores or on Amazon). Bake for 30-35 minutes. Set out on cooking rack to cool, or leave them in the oven until they are dry for extra crunchiness. Enjoy!