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Hello, JACustomer. I have been a Veterinary Nurse for over 15 years and would be happy to help you today. I'm reviewing your question right now.
Endorphins and the excitement of a ride are probably giving him enough of a boost to keep him from showing signs of discomfort when he gets to go for a ride. I would recommend having him examined and your vet discuss putting him on joint supplements like glucosamine and also an NSAID for discomfort of the hips like Rimadyl, Deramaxx, etc. If he is painful due to arthritis, this should help greatly at home and on the go.
Checking in, JA Customer. How is your companion doing?