Dog Refusing To Get Into Car: 6 Reasons Why!

It’s not uncommon for dogs to be stubborn and refuse to get into a car and there are many reasons why this might happen.

but it can make for an awkward situation when you’re trying to leave the house and your dog is refusing to get into the car.

So when this happens what is the solution?

Well, the first thing is to find out the reasons why your dog is refusing to get into the car. Try to think about what might have been going on before they refused to get in the car.

To give you an idea here are some common reasons why some dogs refuse to get into the car.

6 reasons Why Dog Is Refusing To Get Into Car

1. Dog Has Previously Hurt Themselves Getting Into Car

Some dogs that have previously hurt themselves getting into my car may refuse to get in altogether and this is mainly because of the dog’s fear that it will happen again.

If this is the case then your need to distract your dog and keep them busy and the best and most effective way to do this is with dog treats.

Feed your dog a couple of treats to start with and then place some on the back seat this should help with any anxiety they might be feeling.

once your dog is inside then at this point you should secure using a harness or cage so they feel safe.

2. Scent From Another Dog Is Still Inside The Car

If your dog is refusing to get into the car, it may be because they are picking up on the scent of another dog that had been in there. This can happen if you have a friend who comes over with their pet.

If this is the reason why they won’t get into the car then you should clean out the inside of your car before driving again so as not to deter your own pet from getting in.

The best way to do this is by using an odor-eliminating spray, such as Febreeze Pet Odor Eliminator Spray, which will remove all traces of other animals’ scents. Once you have cleaned out any evidence that another animal has been inside your dog should be fine.

3. There Are Strange Smells Inside The Car

Here is another option you may not have considered, Your car smells! Dogs can pick up smells that even you yourself cant smell.

For dogs some odors can be overwhelming and even if you think that your trunk has been emptied recently, it’s possible that the odor could still linger due to lingering gases from upholstery or carpeting.

It might seem like an insignificant issue because nobody would notice but your dog will smell it right away and refuse to go inside for fear of being sickened by the smell. So like before, try using some odor-eliminating spray for the smell.

dog in car

4. Dog Is Having Trouble Jumping In The Car

Another reason could be that your dog is unable to jump up into the car, this could be why they hesitating.

As before this comes down to the dog s fear that they might get hurt.

You see, your dog might be scared of heights, or maybe because he’s getting a little older and his hind legs are starting to go.

If this sounds like your situation then simply give your dog a boost and help them get into the car.

5. Was Sick On His Last Trip

If your dog is refusing to get into the car, it could be because he or she was sick on their last trip. Of course, dogs don’t like being sick and the smell could be why they are hesitating to get in the car.

It’s actually quite common for dogs that were sick on their last trip to refuse to go in the car again because they are nervous or afraid of being sick again.

6. Dog Doesn’t Feel Safe In The Car

If your dog doesn’t want to get in the car it may be because she hates it or has been traumatized by something that happened when she was in there before.

If they’re afraid of cars or don’t feel safe, then sitting in the back seat with someone on either side will help them feel more secure.

What might also help is getting some treats from her favorite person and giving them every few minutes while driving away.

What Can You Do?

The best way to ensure they want to get in is by using positive reinforcement training. Make sure that your pet feels safe and secure before opening the door.

This will help with their anxiety about getting inside the car and make things easier for both parties involved!

You find that it can be a challenge to get your dog into the car, but we have found is if you follow these simple five steps below your dog will be more willing to enter the car without feeling afraid.

  • Get them excited about getting in by giving them their favorite toy or treat
  • Make sure they don’t see the car until you are ready to put them inside
  • Put down some treats on the other side of the door
  • Let them sniff and explore for a few minutes before opening
  • Open the door slowly and let him walk in himself.

Do any of these steps sound familiar? If so, then hopefully this post will help with your next trip!

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So If your dog is refusing to get into the car, try these tricks and see if they work with your dog.

We know it can be frustrating when you have to go somewhere and your pet won’t jump into the car.

But hopefully with these tips mentioned above they work for some dogs but not all so we recommend trying each one with patience until you find something that works before giving up.

A few things you might want to try include moving around as if playing a game, closing your eyes like they’re going to take a nap, tapping them lightly on the top of their head while keeping eye contact.

Or try making kissy noises at them which is often used by veterinarians working with scared animals.