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Long drive home with new puppy
  • AsterixAsterix
    Posts: 90
    Hi all,

    We're getting our puppy in a little less than two weeks, and there's one thing about the pickup etc. that I'm a bit worried about - getting him home.

    The first night, we're staying at my parents' house, which is about an hour away from the breeder, so no big deal, but the next day we've got a 7 or 8 hour drive to get him home for real.

    This is a long trip, and we obviously aren't going to be able to get the pup used to the car, comfortable with it etc.

    And since the car will be full (small car, four people and a couple of suitcases), I'm not sure a crate will fit. And in any case, I'm sure my kids will be more than happy to have him in the back seat with them.

    Other than stopping every couple of hours to let the dog have a bathroom break, any suggestions on how to make this a good trip and experience for all of us? I'm particularly worried about the dog being carsick all the way home.

  • Adonia1986Adonia1986
    Posts: 451
    Truthfully, puppies have this uncanny ability to sleep for rediculous amounts of time (come to think of it Sakura retains that ability). Stopping every few hours or so and ensuring that they have a chance to potty, drink and eat they should be ok with a comfy lap to snooze on. Maybe bring a soft squeaky toy for it as well.Stefanie & Sakura Twin Cities - MN
  • mcsassymcsassy
    Posts: 339
    A puppy should be content with having a warm lap to sleep long as it's not being poked by a million fingers constantly = )
  • AsterixAsterix
    Posts: 90
    Probably only twenty fingers will be poking him. At least there will have been a day to reduce some of the new puppy excitedness...
  • shibamistressshibamistress
    Posts: 5171
    You should try to get a small crate in there. Trust me on this. I drove to Oregon to get my Akita puppy, 3 days there and back, and the crate was a lifesaver, both for the ride and for the overnight stays. He peed on me when I held him on my lap, which was less than pleasant. And he never vomited, but clearly felt sick in the crate, but getting carsick is a possibility, so having a crate will make all the possible accidents more manageable.

    And you need to get him used to a crate anyway, and have it as a safe place for him, so even if it is just a small puppy crate, I'd do it.

    (This from the person who has had to make multiple day drives for all her dogs).
  • lucylulucylu
    Posts: 500
    You should be fine. When we picked ours up we had a 6 hour drive to get back home. She basically slept the ENTIRE time. It's pretty tramatic for them and you can tell in their eyes that they get a little depressed. We just had a nice soft blanket for her to sleep on, a couple chew toys some food and water. The funny thing is when we got home we had a doggy bed under one of our tables for her. She wasn't in the house more than 30 seconds and she walked right over to her bed to lay down. Cutest thing ever.
  • SayaSaya
    Posts: 6678
    I brought Saya home I had her on my lap I had a fleece blanket so if she did pee it'd absorb most of it plus she really loved the fleece blanket and slept most time in my lap or she'd play a bit I brought her keychain nylabone puppy chew and she chewed on that a bit slept, chewed on the fleece, looked around and then sleep..

    A crate is good especially if the dog is car sick, but if you can't then bring two or three fleece or any type of blankets to cover the seat and your lap just in case she throws up plus makes the ride even more comfy. Be sure to have bowl and water bottle for stops to let the pup drink sometimes so she/he stays hydrated.
    Nicole, 5year old Bella(Boxer), and 4year old Saya(Shiba inu)
  • AWE46M3AWE46M3
    Posts: 357
    We put our pup in a crate for the drive home, and oh my! He screamed the whole ride home - just under an hour. He literally screamed the WHOLE time. He may have taken 1 or 2 minutes breaks every now and then, perhaps to catch his breath...? There was a bed inside the crate and toys so its not like it was just an empty plastic carrier/crate. It was a terrible experience - hopefully yours will not be like this if you use a crate!
  • When we brought our two puppies home from the Big Dog Rescue, they cried and screamed all the way home! We put toys, water, food, bones, and a soft cushion in the crate... so my experience was pretty much the same as AWE46ME. I hope your Shiba won't be dramatic like ours!! Sage did much better than Indy though, but now our family is inseparable with our Shibas! They will be fine, and they will get used to you pretty quickly with some love:)
  • we had the breeder put a blanket in with Tiger Lily's mother and litter mates so it would have their scent on it. We had a five hour drive home, and she is definitely a car dog. She looked out of the window while it was light out, and then settled down to sleep on Angie the rest of the ride home. She took a pee break and had some water, and she got home just fine.

    Yours is only a few more hours, so I think a comforting smell and a comfy lap should be okay, unless your puppy isn't one who handles car rides well.
  • zoezoezoezoe
    Posts: 110
    My girl got carsick, though we were warned in advance. I think she was very stressed and nervous. I was hoping she would give me a warning but it all just came out! Luckily it was not liquidy and pretty simple to clean up.
  • AsterixAsterix
    Posts: 90
    My breeder has indicated she doesn't believe in the "blanket with the smell of home" approach - it just makes the puppy pine away for his mother and siblings and prolongs the time to have him adjust to his new home. So we won't have that for the ride home. But I will make sure we have a couple of towels, and maybe a wee-wee pad underneath to keep my kids' legs dry in case of an accident.
  • KibaInuKibaInu
    Posts: 214
    my girlfriend held our pup for a good 9-10 hours on the ride back from our breeder so i think you'll be fine. just take some rest stops but im sure you will.
  • maxwellsmaxwells
    Posts: 347
    We had a crate to transport Ichiro from Ames, Iowa to Chicago, Illinois and found that when we had gotten about 10 miles into the journey home he was carsick all over. I tried cleaning it up, but the little dude was so pathetic and you could tell did NOT want to get back into that crate that I held him on my lap the whole way.

    Thankfully (sorta), he never once went potty during the whole trip. In fact, I recall calling my mom and telling her – my puppy is broken, he won’t do ANY potty, nor eat! He just needed to acclimate from rural IA to urban living in IL and took a few days doing so. So weird to have a joyous call a day later on the topic - my puppy pooped!
    Jenn & Stephen (humans), Ichiro & Akira (shibas), Abraham & Anya (cats)
  • MikadoMikado
    Posts: 47
    Hi and congrats on your new puppy! Everyone here has basically said it, your pup will likely sleep the whole ride :) As far as potty breaks, those would, IMO be more useful to your family than the puppy, if he is really young, cause he may not know what the potty breaks are for... also, we recently took a long drive with our young pup and were completely paranoid about exposing him to heaven knows what at those rest stops as he didn't have all his shots yet. So, I may be passing that paranoia on to you, but do be careful about letting your new, un-vaccinated pup into those rest stop "dog" areas where potentially thousands of dogs of unknown origin have relieved themselves. We had this whole crazy set up of puppy pads for the puppy on our rest stops, but would not let him anywhere near the grassy areas where other dogs had been. May sound over protective, but the potential risk of some nasty bug was not worth it to know the saying "an ounce of prevention..."

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