As we write, the sun has just come out after a heavy downpour. It’s a great time to head outside with the dog, who loves being outside anytime, especially in the rain.
The Los Angeles Department of Animal Services also offers some wet weather tips for you and your pet on these rainy days. While some dogs love to go out in any weather, they say, others are spoiled by our usually beautiful sunny days. When we do get rain, especially when it rains consistently, our four-legged friends can be quite stubborn about leaving the house, which may include not going outdoors to go to the bathroom. You may even happen to find a couple accidents here and there throughout your home, which can be frustrating.
Here are some tips to help you and your pup get though the messy rainy season.
1. Go outside with your dog.
If you normally just let your dog out in the backyard, you may need to actually go with him or her when it’s raining. Taking your dog for a short walk or stepping out in the yard with them will make your best buddy feel safer and it’s more likely that they will feel comfortable enough to go potty.
2. Use positive reinforcement and treats.
Just like with other kinds of potty training, bring a few treats when you take your dog outside and reward them after they “go.” Be sure to praise them enthusiastically as well.
3. Plan ahead.
Watch the weather and take advantage of bringing your dog outside during a lull in the storm. Your pooch will more likely be open to going outside when it’s sprinkling than when it’s pouring rain. Also, think about your walking route. Avoid busy streets where cars will splash through puddles and drench you both and potentially scare your furry family member. If your dog doesn’t mind getting dressed up, try purchasing a doggie rain coat and boots for them or grab a large umbrella to shield them from the rain drops. When they get wet, keep a towel on hand so you can quickly dry them off when you return to the house to avoid water and mud on your floors and furniture.
4. Play indoors.
If your dog is used to going outside and running around during the day, you’ll want to provide them with indoor activities when it rains for long periods of time. Teach them a new trick, give them a new chew toy, play hide in seek or let them figure out a puzzle feeder or Kong ball that you can pick up at your local pet store. Some pets do not like rain and some do…but regardless, remember companion animals want to be with you! They are safer and dryer inside with you during rainstorms, where they can spend their time doing what they do best: being your best friend.
On that note, better head outside — it’s starting look like rain again!