Singing And Barking In The Rain!

Shirin Merchant shares tips to help our four-legged, best friends survive the monsoons

The monsoons may come in as a relief from summer, but it’s not too blissful for your pooch who’s wondering when the rains will stop so he can go out and play! The season with its dampness, humidity and grey symbolizes shorter walks, wet coats, muddy feet, the list is endless. Let’s try making this monsoon a fun time for you and your dog!

‘Tick’ed Off!

The rains usher in unwanted guests – ticks! Ticks thrive in this weather, so ensure your dog is regularly groomed and checked for ticks. The market has a plethora of tick treatments ranging from spot-ons, sprays, collars and even organic treatments to help keep your dog tick free. Keep in mind that if your dog has ticks on him, then your home has been infested and needs to be fumigated to remove the ticks living as guests in your carpets, furniture crevices and walls.

Walks And Exercise:

The rains hamper a dog’s walking schedule. Try taking your dog for shorter walks when the weather is dry. To avoid getting dogs’ coat wet, invest in a doggy raincoat – and get your pooch used to wearing the raincoat at home so he doesn’t fuss on the walk. If you have your poop rounds and exercise rounds clubbed, try and separate these two as it gives you less time in the rain.

Keep Boredom At Bay:

Due to likely lesser exercise in the rainy season, your pooch might display boredom/destructive behaviour at home. Try these tips to keep your dog occupied and exercised when its wet outdoors:

  • Use the stairs instead of the elevator – if you live on the 1stfloor, go up to the 5th floor and return.
  • You could play fun games like fetch or hide and seek in your parking lot. Ensure, if your dog is off leash, he responds when called.
  • In-house, move the furniture around, create an obstacle course and teach your dog to jump over a stool or crawl under a chair and weave around the dining table!
  • Scenting games are a great way to keep your dog’s brain sharp. Hide a toy or a treat and ask your dog to find it.
  • Give your dog some interactive toys to play with or a stuffed bone – these keep your dog occupied for hours on end.

Coat Care:

The constant monsoon humidity ruins a dog’s coat. Wet hair leads to wet skin, fungal infections, smelly coats and eventually a vet visit. Most dogs, naturally, will shrug off any excess water off their body, but you need to ensure that your dog dries off completely. Here are a few tips on coat care:

  • Wipe down your pet thoroughly after every walk.
  • Long coats get matted when wet, so brush out the tangles once the coat dries. A grooming spray helps get rid of tangles and keeps the odour at bay.
  • Visit a pet salon for a quick trim especially for the paws and tummy area; this is especially for the long haired breeds like the Lhasa Apso, Cocker Spaniel, Spitz and Setters. You’ll be better able to manage the coat at home.
  • Use a hair dryer if required. Don’t hold it too close to the skin as it could irritate your pet.

Paw Care:

  • Walking through puddles, wet grounds, muck and wet grass translates into wet and unclean paws. Keep a clean cotton cloth at the house entrance to wipe the paws after every walk.
  • Make sure your dog’s paws are thoroughly dried after each walk especially as paws are breeding grounds for fungal diseases. Ensure you separate each digit and dry it; don’t forget the paw pad – mud, burs and grass can get embedded there.
  • If your pet gets cracked or rough pads, you can use a paw balm to soften them.
  • Avoid allowing your dog to lick wet paws after a walk – as he could get a tummy infection. So always keep the paws clean.
  • With dry paws, you don’t have to worry about paw marks, muddy sofas and a dirty bed where your pet sleeps. You can also dust some grooming powder (like Absorb) to dry the moisture and prevent fungal infections caused due to wetness.

General Safety:

  • Most creepy crawlies are out and about in the monsoon season. Watch out for insects, frogs and snakes, especially if your dog plays in a garden. Accompany your dog outdoors to ensure he doesn’t swallow a baby frog or play with a poisonous insect.
  • Be extra careful with puppies as they succumb to water borne diseases quickly.
  • During walks, ensure your dog doesn’t lick water from roadside puddles or eats wet grass. Avoid letting your dog’s snout go into clumps of wet grass as small insects or even a baby snake could be hiding there and might get disturbed and attack your dog.
  • For late evening walks, carry a torch to know exactly where your pet is headed and always keep your pet ahead of you.
  • If you suspect that your pet has been bitten, immediately rush him to the vet.

With a bit of innovative thinking and common sense, we can ensure that our dogs can enjoy a safe and happy monsoon season!

Shirin Merchant

Shirin Merchant

Shirin Merchant looks forward to answering all relevant queries from our readers. Please write in to: k9cancare@hotmail.com or mailparsitimes@gmail.com
Shirin Merchant

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About Shirin Merchant

Shirin Merchant looks forward to answering all relevant queries from our readers. Please write in to: k9cancare@hotmail.com or mailparsitimes@gmail.com

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