It is monsoon again. Everything around us is fresh and drenched in the rains. The lovely greenery and cool weather encourage one to go on long walks and people love to take their dogs along as well. While we can enjoy the monsoons safely and comfortably, our furry friends may not be so lucky. Since they don’t speak our language, we may not know they are not doing fine if we don’t take precautions or keep a lookout for the signs. The pandemic & lockdown situation has resulted in many people opting for pets. So this may actually be the first monsoon for many pet parents. Here are some trusted tips that may be useful.
How to care for your dogs in the rainy season.
Keep The Paws Clean
Rains bring with it a lot of slush and mud. Since dogs love to play and are naturally inquisitive, they can get their paws dirty. Ensure you wash your dog’s paws with lukewarm water after every walk and wipe them completely dry. Check for mud in the nails, between the paws and the belly. This will make sure both you and your dog don’t catch any infection from the dirty paws or body.
Keep Your Dog Dry
Don’t take your dog, especially young pups, for a walk in the rain, even if it is a slight drizzle. They can catch a cold or cough, which can turn to pneumonia. If you are caught unawares in the rain, ensure you wipe your dog as soon as you return home and keep them warm & dry.
Get Appropriate Gear
These days there are special raincoats and shoes available for dogs to keep them protected from rain. Get good quality rain gear that is of the right size as per the brand. Keep in mind that many dogs don’t like to wear clothes and may not be comfortable in a raincoat.
Prevent Ticks & Fleas
Ensure your dog is bathed regularly. Increase the frequency of baths as they can get dirty more easily. Post bath and on regular basis, ensure you use an anti-tick powder or belt to keep them tick-free. Check every day for hidden ticks in the folds of the ears, paws, etc. To read my earlier post on appropriate care & how to keep your dogs tick-free, click here.
Watch Out For Infections
Skin infections are common in this season – so look out for itchiness, incessant scratches, boils, rashes, etc. There is also a high risk of dogs getting gastro-Intestinal diseases. If your dog has an upset stomach, refusing water, or is not eating properly, consult your vet immediately. If appropriate treatment is delayed or not given, it can turn serious, especially in young pups whose immunity is low.
Food & Water
Make sure their water bowl is always filled with fresh, clean water. Boiled and cooled water is good for them. Ensure their food is freshly made. Include high-fiber vegetables like sweet potatoes or pumpkins in their diet. Make sure that there is no fungus on their dry food and treats by storing them in air-tight containers.
Many infections spread with poop. Ensure you pick up after your dog and properly dispose of poop. If your dog is unwell, keep away from other dogs and do not allow them to play together or mingle as there is a chance of the infection spreading. If you live in a community, inform other pet parents of any infections as they can be alert and keep a lookout for symptoms.
Make sure that your dog’s vaccination and deworming are up to date.
The rains bring out many reptiles, insects, and bugs. Many of these can harm your dogs. Avoid dark and bushy spots. It is recommended you carry a flashlight during walks at night. Look out for frogs as their secretions can be poisonous if your dog bites them. Snakes too will be encountered more, as will insects, bugs, etc. A lot of weeds and mushrooms too flourish during this season. Make sure your dog does not eat them. If your dog is bitten or shows signs of distress, rush to the vet immediately.
Empathize And Show You Care
Rains bring with it lightning and thunder. Most dogs are very scared of the loud and sudden noise. Avoid leaving your dog alone during thunderstorms as your presence reassures them that they are protected. Create a safe and secure space for them to crawl into if they so desire. Allow them to stay close to you if they feel safer with you.
By just taking a few precautions, you can ensure your furry friend is happy & healthy and both of you can enjoy the monsoon in all its glory!
If you are a new pet parent or considering getting a pet, you may find the tips in my earlier blog useful. Click here to read my blog.