8 Reasons Why Dogs Pant In The Car?

Dogs love to travel, but it sometimes doesn’t excite them about traveling in a hot car.

Dogs pant because their tongue design helps to cool them down as saliva evaporates and takes their body heat with it.

The problem is that dogs don’t sweat as we do, so when they are outside they can regulate themselves naturally by panting and cooling off.

But inside of a car dogs can have problems cooling off and this is why they pant in the car.

Why Do Dogs Pant In The Car?

The panting of a dog is typically due to physical activity or being too hot.

Dogs have sensitive respiratory systems, and the heat can be hard on their bodies which may cause them to pant more than usual in order for it to cool off.

When they exercise, their body temperature also rises so that could possibly be why they are panting in the car!

However, there are a few more different possible explanations as to why this might be happening with your dog.

1. Scared Of Car Rides

It’s natural for dogs to pant when they are nervous, so dog owners pretty much know this prior to car rides.

The average dog doesn’t understand what’s happening when they get into a car.

For some dogs, their confusion only increases from all of these strange things that are happening around them that don’t make sense it can be very scary for your pooch.

Possible Solution

  • Every dog deserves to enjoy a ride in the car! When you’re driving, keep your pup relaxed with some slow and steady movements.
  • It’s also important not to make any jarring moves that might scare them.
  • If they seem uneasy, don’t frustrate yourself or the dog, even yelling is also not a good solution.
  • Instead, encourage them, give them some treats this way you’re telling your dog it’s ok and safe to be in a car.
Why Dog Pants In The Car

2. Uncomfortable

Your dog is panting in the car this can be a sign that they are feeling uncomfortable.

The most common reason for dogs to be panting while riding in cars is due to high temperatures if it’s very hot outside.

Vehicles can heat up quickly especially when in direct sunlight and panting is a way for your dog to signal that he or she isn’t feeling well.

Panting can sometimes be an indicator of physical injury, illness, and discomfort.

Possible Solution

  • You should always provide your pup with a comfortable area to rest. If you have an SUV or other large vehicle, consider letting your dog sit in the back.
  • If you have a small car then try using a dog crate! Dog crates are excellent at providing a comfortable spot, while at the same time also keeping them safe.

3. Motion Sickness

If your dog is panting in the car, there’s a good chance it could be motion sickness.

If you don’t want to have doggy vomit all over your upholstery and seats,

you should slow down or pull over and let your dog out for some fresh air.

Motion sickness mostly affects puppies but there are some dogs that never grow out of it.

You can help by gradually introducing them one short ride at a time until they adapt to the sensation of moving vehicles.

Possible Solution

  • Dogs can suffer from motion sickness this tends to happen because of their sense of balance and eyesight that are very different than ours and if your pup is especially sensitive to car rides, give them some time to adjust before taking off.
  • If your dog is in a carrier try covering it with blankets so they can’t see anything while you’re driving around this can help with motion sickness and make sure you don’t do any hard braking or maneuvering.

4. Overheating

Dogs can get very hot during car rides, which is why they often pant. Not only are dogs always wearing a fur coat but even if you have the sleekest and shortest-haired pet they can still overheat in a car.

In hot weather, it’s important to keep your dog cool and panting is one indication that they need some relief from the heat!

When you see them panting heavily or drooling excessively (or if their tongue looks dry), give them water.

Possible Solution

  • It is important to keep your dog cool when in the car and the best way to do this is to turn on the air conditioning. This will help keep the dog’s temperature down.
  • The last thing you want is for them to get overexcited and start moving around in an already heated space, which could lead to heatstroke later on!
Dog Panting  In The Car

5. Dehydration

Dog owners know that a long summer day can be rough on our four-legged friend and that outdoor exercise, combined with all the drooling and sweating from being out in the heat is bound to make your pup thirsty!

The same goes when a dog travels in a car! It can get very hot and the dog will start panting to get cool as a result this causes dehydration for the dog.

Possible Solution

  • If you notice any signs in your dog after they’ve been outside for more than 30 minutes you should act immediately by giving them plenty of water.
  • Clean running water would be even better as this will hydrate them faster.
    • However bottled water will be fine, just make sure you bring enough because you be surprised how much water a dog can drink when they are dehydrated.

6. Excitement

Panting in dogs means they are overheated or might be feeling anxious or it could be that they are excited. It doesn’t always mean that the dog needs water.

but if you see your pup inhaling and exhaling quickly, then he/she probably needs some water as well as a reprieve from the situation causing anxiety.

Possible Solution

  • There are ways to help calm down an anxious pup like giving him his favorite toy, running around with him outside for at least 15 minutes (or until he cools off).
  • You can also try distracting them by playing music (not too loud) or giving them treats this should help them calming down.

7. Medical Reasons

The panting of a dog can be the first sign that they are in pain, or something is wrong.

If you ever notice your pup starting to breathe heavily even outside of their car ride home from work, take them to see a vet as soon as possible!

You know that your dog is in pain if it starts panting excessively and this will happen both inside and outside of the car and may continue for an extended amount of time.

Possible Solution

  • Keep an eye on your dog if they keep panting and it’s none of the reasons mentioned in this article then you should see your vet asap and try to avoid letting your dog in the car.
  • You should also try and keep your dog as comfortable as possible and give them some love just to let your dog know that everything is going to be ok.

8. Bodily Pain

Your dog often pants for no reason – which might be a sign of pain. Like humans, panting is one way that dogs express the physical discomfort they experience with long-term problems like arthritis or chronic back issues.

Dogs are just as in tune with their own bodies and feelings as we are! For example, when you’re feeling sick (either physically or emotionally), your body may tense up and your breathing becomes more rapid and it’s the same for our dogs.

Possible Solution

  • When your dog pants, take it as an early sign that you need to investigate further. Don’t disregard this panting if taking place after a long walk or playing in the yard for hours on end – visit your vet!
  • Your veterinarian will know how to properly diagnose and relieve pain from any health issue.

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How To Preventing Excessive Panting?

Check The Temperature: Keep your pup safe and cool by checking the temperature before going out for a walk or leaving them in your car.

Make sure you know how to prepare their environment because it’s not healthy if they are left inside of a hot car all day, even with air conditioning!

Know-How To Reduce Car Anxiety: Anxiety is one major reason why pets will pant excessively during the process,

which in turn makes breathing difficult because air cannot enter properly due to rapid respiration rates- as well as pushing blood pressure up with all this extra work!

Keeping them relaxed by keeping them happy – through calming training sessions at home (using treats!) – reduces stress levels drastically leading soon enough to fewer instances of excessive panting and better overall wellbeing.

Think About Your Dog’s Health: A caring pet owner spends a lot of time with their dog, but they may not know that the health and well-being of your furry friend depend on you.

Panting is one indication to look out for when assessing how our pup’s doing.

If excessive panting becomes uncontrollable or persists most days without any obvious cause then it should be taken seriously as an indicator something might be wrong.

How To Keep Your Dog Calm In The Car?

Have you ever wondered how to calm your dog in the car? It’s not as easy for untrained dogs,

However, we can show you some tips on calming them in the car.

First, you should get their focus off of something that may trigger a reaction such as another animal or person,’ ‘to help use environmental stimuli and distractions like smells they associate with home.

When it’s time to calm them down, start limiting their movements by putting the pup at the boot or back of your seat or even inside a dog crate.

A dog’s excitement comes when you are about to go outside and play with them and as mentioned before the best way to keep your pup calm is to distract them by playing music or feed them treats.

It’s not easy for dogs to get used to traveling in cars and if you are about start car training with your dog, take it slow so that they will be comfortable and won’t feel sick or anxious while riding around the block.

Start by getting them into a vehicle without moving than once they’re relaxed, try taking short trips nearby before gradually increasing their distance from home as well as time spent on the road. Just remember to be prepared for the unexpected!


There are many instances where you need to take your dog with you on a long car journey.

This can be an enjoyable experience for both of you, but there will inevitably come times when the ride becomes too much for one or even both of you!

This is where using CBD products can provide a way by which any human can relax in situations like this without being sleepy afterward and the same goes for our pets.

These products can work wonders at calming down your dog however you should always seek advice from your local vet before giving your dog any medication just to be on the safe side.


If you notice your pup panting it is a good idea to observe and assess the situation.

The immediate solution, however, would be to find a comfortable place for them to rest and get out of the heat as soon as possible.

If they are in pain or uncomfortable (physical injury) then consult with your vet immediately! Your dog’s health should always come first!!

It may also help by bringing along the water on trips so that they can have some hydration while riding along in the car.

It may seem like an innocent situation at first glance but considering all the factors we know about our pets this information should be considered before riding with your dog in the car.

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