CHENNAI: We love the rain, but getting wet and sticky is another story altogether. Well, most of our dogs may be the same. They love the rain. However, they may not like to get wet, but just love to watch it pour. You may think that your dog will not catch a cold since it doesn’t get drenched, but have you wondered about those small puddles that they tend to scamper into or worse, lick them?
“The sewage system in the city is bad and the bacteria that puddles hold are harmful! Licking their paws after a walk on a rainy day can cause infections or worse,” warns veterinarian Dr Priyadarshini Govind.
Rohit Koliyot, a pet owner, narrates an incident when his two-year-old pet Zoki licked something off the road, one rainy day.
“During the rains last year, Zoki licked something outside and then she couldn’t walk! It almost seemed like she had arthritis for a week. The doctor said that it was a water-borne virus that she had caught from outside,” he says.
Dr Priyadarshini offers some tips related to grooming.“They need regular grooming. When you go for a walk, they get damp. Once back home, make sure you dry their coat and brush thoroughly or it may lead to skin problems. Always wash their paws because stagnant water may hold contamination of urine and other infections,” she says.
Chitra, a pet owner, takes one step further when it comes to taking care of her cross-breed dog Bolt. Every time Bolt returns after a short or a long walk, I give him a vigorous hot water bath or a sponge bath and brush him.
“I add apple cidar vinegar to his drinking water,” she adds.
Dr R Sokkalingam of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals says, “It is used to improve the dog’s digestion. But during the rainy season, it is best to apply it on his coat to remove fungus when he gets wet.”
Though Bolt dislikes water and getting drenched in the rain, he loves to watch it pour fand he falls asleep, right there. But rain has some advantages too
“Since the weather becomes cold, you get to hug your pet and go to sleep,” says Koliyot. Rainy days are almost like any other normal day, just that some extra care has to be given as they are prone to water-borne diseases. Another concern is the lightning and thunder. Some dogs get scared when they hear thunder. Some pet owners seem oblivious to the fact that the reason behind the sudden spree of barks is the thunder and lightning.
“When there is thunder, it really scares them. They cower and come to you, to seek protection. Always be close to your dog during that time as it can get them agitated,” advises Rohit.