July 13, 2023

When Can Puppies Travel by Car?

Puppies can travel by car at any age as long as you’re sensible about it. The younger they are the more considerate you should be.

In this article I try to cover all the possible options and things you should consider.

Table of Contents

Can newborn puppies travel in a car?

Whoa there, let's not jump the gun! Newborn pups should stick close to mommy for at least their first few weeks of life. Their little bodies are still developing, and they need that maternal bonding time. It is very unusual that a puppy would leave its mother during the first 8 weeks so unless the pups mother is going in the car as well, it is very unlikely a puppy would be in a car before eight weeks.

When can puppies travel by car

Assuming the pups are being sold or given away to good homes hen at 8 weeks the new owner will be collecting them. Normally that would be by car. So that would be its first road trip.

If you wanted to transport them when they were younger than 8 weeks then yes, newborn puppies can travel by car, but with precautions. Ensure they're secure in a carrier for safety, maintain a stable temperature, and avoid long journeys due to their delicate health and potential motion sickness.

Try to drive evenly, with no excessive acceleration and braking and avoid pot holes and driving off road over bumpy terrain.

You should read my post called "Why does my dog pant in the car".

What age can you take a puppy in the car?

Like I said, waiting until 8 weeks is best. At that age, they've had their first round of shots and have started weaning from mom. They're still teensy and beyond adorable but have a bit more resilience for new adventures. Just keep trips short at first - think quick jaunts to the park or pet store. Ease them into it. 

Is it okay for puppies to travel in the car?

Totally! Well-socialized pups usually love seeing the world whoosh by. If you have signed up your dog for dog training classes or want to take them on a puppy play date then car trips are fine. Read "Are Puppy Play Groups Good?"

Just take precautions to keep them safe and comfortable. Crates, harnesses, and covered beds help make the journey less stressful. Bring water, chew toys, pee pads...you know, all the creature comforts. Read "What is the best Chew for a puppy?"

If they get antsy, take frequent potty and play breaks. As they mature, they'll become seasoned road warriors!

When can I take my puppy on a long car journey?

You'll want to wait until about 6 months old before hitting the open road for extended trips. At this point, they have more bladder control and can go longer between pit stops. Make sure they're microchipped and have ID tags too, just in case they decide to go on a little adventure!

Read "Can I take my dog to France on the ferry?"

Apart from doggy treats etc mentioned above, bring food, meds, vet records, and other essentials. Long hauls take more planning but are so worth it for dog-friendly destinations. Just think of the memories you'll make!

Conclusion: When Can Puppies Travel by Car?

Remember these simple rules. Secure your pup in a crate or carrier and use a doggy seat belt for safety. Keep the temperature comfortable and be ready to stop whenever needed. If going for longer than a 5-minute spin, take water bowls, toys, and blankets must be secured and dogs in cars should be out of direct sunlight.

If you’re so stupid that I need to tell you not to park your car and leave your puppy inside it on a hot day unattended for even 5 minutes, yet alone more, then you’re too stupid to be allowed to own a dog.

Simple common-sense rules apply. Just buckle up, roll down the windows, and prepare for tail wags aplenty!

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