For most people, the monsoons conjure up peaceful memories of warm chai and the soothing pitter-patter sounds of rain. For pet parents, however, these monsoon months have the infamous reputation for being ‘tick season’ and many prepare for it well in advance. Anti-tick and flea measures are important but there are other aspects of your pet’s lives that also need attention as the season changes:
During this season, the skies perpetually look cloudy so it may be tough to judge when it’s going to rain. To be on the safe side, slip your pet into a waterproof dog raincoat before you set out. Damp coats often lead to skin issues so it’s best to avoid the situation altogether.
Slipping waterproof boots on to your pet keeps his/her paws clean despite the icky stuff that’s often found on the roads after a rain. Dogs often lick their paws clean after the walk and thereby, ingest anything they’ve stepped in. This can be especially dangerous in the monsoons because rainwater may have spread things like rat urine (which causes leptospirosis) around. Boots keep their paws clean and dry. They also make it much harder for ticks to climb on.
It is important to keep your pet’s coat clean and dry through the monsoons. So, put together a little space by the door with everything you need to clean them up post-walk. Even if your pet’s coat is just a little damp, be sure to dry it off because dampness often leads to skin issues. An absorbent microfibre towel will help you do this quite easily. Pet wipes can be used on the paws to get rid of mud that your pet may have stepped in. Pets commonly pick up ticks on walks, so do a quick tick check and use an anti-tick spray on the coat to be safe.
Pet tummies are prone to upsets in the rainy season so be extra careful of their food and water. Make sure they drink boiled water and have them de-wormed at the beginning of the season. Keeping their bowls washed and clean after every meal is a good way to prevent infections.
Light and nutritious meals are best for this season. Since the weather is much colder, senior pets may appreciate getting warm food rather than cold. Don’t make the meals too heavy and ensure they include sufficient fiber to keep the tummy happy. Consider supplements like Golden Paste to strengthen the immune system.
A good way to judge your pet’s health is to keep an eye on what comes out at the other end. If your pet has loosies, it means that you need to take another look at what he/ she has been eating. Consult a vet for medication and a pet nutritionist for a better diet.
Keep them Busy:
Thanks to the frequent rains, your pet may not be able to spend as much time outside as he or she would like. So they’re probably bursting with energy. To prevent destructive chewing and to keep them out of mischief, keep your pet busy with indoor toys.
With puzzles, interactive toys and even chews, your pets are kept engaged and their minds are given a thorough workout. Solving puzzles and playing interactive games indoors are great to tire them out.
Doggies often end up getting their coat dirtier in the monsoons than in the dry seasons. Muddiness and the general dampness of the season can take a toll on your pet’s coat. And it may not be feasible to wait for a sunny day to give your pet a bath at home. Take your pet to an ethical groomer and have them bathed at a pet spa. The professional dryers ensure that your pet’s coat is completely dry post-bath.
Anti-Tick and Flea Measures:
Just as anti-tick and flea treatment requires a 360-degree approach, preventive measures are also the same. Besides spot-on treatments (there are also those made with natural ingredients), a nutritious diet keeps your pet healthy and ticks are less likely to thrive on a healthy pet. Using rubber boots and paw balms on walks makes it harder for ticks to get on to your dog. Checking your pet frequently for ticks and having his coat groomed regularly are also important. All of these steps come together to keep your pet tick-free healthy and happy.
A Note on Thunderstorms and Lightning:
Just as dogs get scared of firecrackers during Diwali, they also get very anxious when they hear thunder and lightning. Your pet may start shivering or become very restless during this time. Close the windows to shut out as much as the noise as possible and try to distract your pet with a game. No matter what, ensure that he or she is in a safely enclosed space indoors. You can use pet mats to give them a comfortable space to cosy up in. Pet mats cab be washed in the machine easily, making them ideal for the monsoon.
Scared dogs tend to run helter-skelter and in their panicked state, many run out of the house or jump over the compound. If you get caught in the rain on your walk, try to get home as soon as possible or take shelter at a friend’s house. Always, ALWAYS have a nametag with your updated contact details on your pet. So, even if he or she gets separated from you, rescuers can contact you.