It's important to know that there are ways to walk your dog in the rain comfortably for both you and your dog. Dogs have sensitive senses, and the sound and smell of rain can be overwhelming for some. Most dogs won't mind walking in the rain. In fact some will gain enjoyment from doing so. However, there are some dogs who find this a less than pleasant experience for a number of reasons, meaning that you may be a dog owner who dreads the idea of walking your dog in the rain.
Additionally, some dogs may simply dislike getting wet. But with proper gear and training, you can help your dog feel more comfortable in the rain and enjoy the benefits of regular exercise.
Why some dogs don't like the rain
Some dogs don't like the rain for various reasons. Some breeds are more sensitive to wet and cold weather than others, such as toy breeds, very short-haired breeds, or those with thin fur coats. Additionally, the sound of the rain can be overwhelming and scary to some dogs, making them feel anxious or stressed. Some dogs may have had negative experiences in the rain, such as getting lost or being outside for too long in a storm, which can cause them to associate rainy weather with fear and discomfort.
Can dogs get sick from being in the rain?
Dogs don’t get sick due to being in the rain, however it is important to dry them off as soon as you get inside. If a dog is already weakened due to an underlying health condition or a compromised immune system, being out in the rain can worsen their condition. It is important to dry off your dog after they have been in the rain and monitor them for any signs of illness such as coughing, sneezing, or lethargy. If you notice any concerning symptoms, it is best to consult with a vet.
What to do if your dog refuses to go for a walk in the rain?
It's not uncommon for some dogs to refuse to go for a walk in the rain. If your furry friend is showing reluctance to go out in the rain, there are a few things you can try to encourage them to go outside. First, try to make going outside a positive experience for your dog by using treats, praise, and toys as incentives. You can also try using a raincoat or umbrella to keep your dog dry, which can help them feel more comfortable. If your dog is still refusing to go outside, consider creating an indoor potty area using pee pads or artificial turf. It's important to be patient and understanding with your dog during this process, as forcing them to go out in the rain can create more anxiety and make the situation worse. Additionally, if your dog's aversion to the rain seems severe, it may be worth consulting with a vet or a professional dog trainer for further guidance.
Train your dog to go out in the rain
Training your dog to go out in the rain can take some patience and persistence, but it is possible. Here are some tips to help your dog become more comfortable with rainy weather:
Start with short walks: Begin by taking your dog out for short walks in the light rain, gradually increasing the duration over time. This will help your dog get used to the sensation of being wet.
Use positive reinforcement: Reward your dog with treats, praise, or toys when they go outside in the rain. This will help them associate the rain with positive experiences.
Dress them appropriately: Consider getting your dog a raincoat or waterproof harness to help keep them dry and comfortable.
Make it fun: Play games with your dog in the rain, such as fetch or hide-and-seek, to make the experience more enjoyable.
Be patient: Some dogs may take longer to adjust to rainy weather than others, so be patient and continue to work with your dog consistently. Remember, never force your dog to go outside in the rain if they are showing signs of fear or discomfort. It's important to make the training experience as positive and stress-free as possible for your furry friend.
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At Folly Garden Vets, we understand the role that behavioural medicine plays and the effects that behavioural problems may have on both patients and owners. If you’re having trouble with your pet’s behaviour or want to know more about behaviour management, then read more here .