The pitter-patter of raindrops is just a few weeks away. While humans get excited for the relief from heat, dogs are looking forward to jumping in puddles as well. You have to be extra careful during the monsoon to keep your dog healthy and safe. This time is known to wreak havoc in your dog's life because it's also the favorite season for the ticks, fleas and insects of the world. While ticks and fleas occur mostly in summers, fungal and bacterial infections besides insect bites are more frequent in monsoon.
Here are some common monsoon problems and their solutions-
Problem: Pets are prone to getting tick fever during the monsoon season which can even lead to kidney failure. Monsoon season is a breeding ground for ticks and fleas and there are higher chances of your dog catching it if left unnoticed. Your dog could also be exposed to fungal and bacterial infections during this time besides insect bites. Fungal infections are very common in the paws and abdomen. You may also notice pimples, redness of skin or itching.
Solution: Clean and groom your dog's coat thoroughly with a vet-approved shampoo and tick powder. Blow-dry them properly after bath time. You will have to manually remove some ticks but don’t squirm. Remember that you must put them in kerosene or detergent-infused water to kill them. Use a tick collar or consult a vet for oral medication. Skin infections can be treated with over-the-counter (OTC) drugs as well. Consult your vet if symptoms persist.
In case of insect bites, cool the area with water or an ice cube. You could rub half an onion, diluted apple cider vinegar or baking soda mixed with water on the wound.
Problem: Dogs have a heightened sense of smell and would chew up anything they lay their eyes on. Does your pet chew your shoes? Then you have to be alert. What they put in their mouth could lead to tummy troubles. Since the rainy season is known for a swarm of insects and other harmful micro-organisms, there will be plenty. Stomach upsets can happen due to bacterial infections after ingestion of micro-organisms. Bacterial infections can occur even outside the body. They could face indigestion, loose stools, vomiting and more.
Solution: Keep their bowls, water and surroundings clean. Don’t let their drinking water stay stagnant for long. Make sure they don't consume dirty or contaminated water. Keep it on an elevated surface so that insects don't crawl into it.
All dogs love to catch insects. Train your puppy to not jump or catch insects from the air with commands. Also, don’t teach them to catch treats in the air.
If you see they have caught and consumed cockroaches, lizards or frogs, induce vomiting by giving them vinegar or putting salt at the back of their tongue. Don’t let them chew grass during walks. If your pet has an upset stomach, increase the gut flora in their intestine by giving them probiotic-infused drinks or curd.
Problem: Dogs get restless if they’re not walked or given space to play. They need to smell grass because it’s like reading the morning newspaper for them. This means that their paws will be exposed to a lot of moisture and water. It can lead to loosening of their paw follicles and cause dermatitis. They could get inflamed and painful. If they lick the mud off their paws, it could cause other digestive troubles.
Solution: Pat your dog's paw dry after every walk. Wash it with clean water and use a blow dryer. Clip the nails but not too close to the skin. Open cuts could lead to infections. If your dog has a heavy or hairy coat, trim the hair between the paws to prevent mud collection. You can rub healing oils on their paws to give them a rest.
Ear Me Out
Problem: Ever seen flies or insects hovering around your dog's face? They won’t go away during monsoon season and might get into their ears. It could cause your dog discomfort
Solution: Vets advise ear cleaning only once a month in other seasons but during the rainy season it is critical to clean their ears every day. Do it with a vet-approved solution or with cotton buds. Pet grooming centers are equipped to do the same.
Problem: Thunder, lightning, and heavy showers can scare your pooch and make them behave abnormally. Drooling, shivering, howling, putting their tail between their legs and even nightmares are observed in dogs during this season. Your pet might need constant reassurance, cuddles and hugs. They might not like living without their human parents for extended periods of time.
Pets also feel restless because of lack of activity as their running or walking time is heavily curtailed during this season. Their appetites may also suffer due to this.
Solution: Try to understand your dog's needs and what’s informing their behavior. You can consult a pet behavior expert on how to tackle it best as every dog is different and needs different reassurances. You can also try giving pet boarding a shot.
Try using up their pent up energy by playing indoor games with tennis balls or frisbees. Give them frequent but small meals.
You can prepare your pet for the monsoon by getting all their vaccinations in order and getting them booster doses to strengthen their immunity. Consult your vet about the same. Monsoon is supposed to be a happy and joyous time where nature is in full force. Make sure you and your pet have a wholesome, cozy and warm quality time together.
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*Disclaimer: This blog is vet-approved and includes original content which is compiled after thorough research and authenticity by our in-house team of vets and content experts. It is always advisable to consult a veterinarian before you try any products, pet food/treats or any kind of treatment/medicines on your pets, as each pet is unique and will respond differently.