In my daily life as a professional dog walker, a rainstorm or windy weather doesn’t put me off at all. In fact, many of the dogs that I walk each day love being outside in the rain; they have furry coats that repel the water and how many dogs do you know that just love splashing about in puddles given the chance.
However, as the weather forecast looks a bit challenging, especially as there are several days of heavy rain showers expected, I thought it was the ideal opportunity to offer you a few of my tips for walking dogs when its wet outside.
No 1. Don’t worry about changing your plan
f its pelting down with rain and you don’t want to end up with a dripping wet dog walking onto your carpets, change your plans. Missing one walk throughout the day won’t harm your pet, provided he gets outside for toilet breaks, of course. Stay at home and play hide and seek games with your pup instead.
No 2. Head to the dog park
You can bet that if its raining heavily, you will probably be the only dog walker at the park. Stand under a tree to shelter and let your pooch have a run around to burn off all that excess energy; he won’t mind if you cut the walk short by 20 minutes for once. Remember to take along plenty of old towels to wipe off all the excess mud and dirt before the dog gets into your car, or have them ready prepared in the hallway at home, so the first thing you do when you return home is wipe down the wet dog.
No 3. Wear the right gear
Yes, this applies to both you and your pet. A decent raincoat with a hood and a pair of waterproof boots or wellingtons is necessary for walking in the rain, to keep you dry. Most dogs will tolerate wearing a light-weight coat to keep most of the rain off his fur. I find than an umbrella is useless when dog-walking – not enough hands!
No 4. Keep away from busy streets
Traffic speeding past and spraying water onto both of you isn’t ideal. Your dog might get a scare if he’s not expecting to get soaked. Pedestrians tend to rush along faster in the rain too, often with umbrellas held out in front of them, oblivious to anyone else walking along the pavement.
No 5. Keep away from contaminated floodwater
When drains become blocked and flood water builds up, of course, its common sense to keep your dog out of the deep water. Not only for his and your safety but also because of the possible contamination from toxic pollutants in the water. Sewage and chemicals, such as anti-freeze and screen wash can be very toxic to your dog so it’s best to avoid any deep puddles on your walk.
No 6. Smelly wet dog issues
There is no getting away from it, every dog has a certain aroma when he is soaking wet and its never pleasant. Your dog’s coat will soon dry, but the smell will linger around the house. There are many spray air fresheners you can use, or aromatic candles are a good option to eliminate the odor.
Deciding if you should walk your pooch in the rain is, of course, a personal choice. If it’s tackled properly, and you’re wearing the correct wet-weather gear, it can be fun and enjoyable for both of you.
Splash through the puddles, take in the sweet smells that the rain unleashes on the earth and look forward to returning home to a hot bath, dry clothes and a steaming cup of tea.