We live in a rainforest.
Not the cool rainforest either. Some rain forests have like toucans and monkeys and all sorts of cool stuff. The only toucan we have is stuffed. No offense to Felix, who adores that darn Toucan, but it’s kind of a poor substitute for the real thing, plus he doesn’t exactly excel at sharing it.
We live in the kind of rain forest where we get 8 or 9 months of driving rain.
It’s awful and having light carpets and two dogs only makes it more awful. The dogs don’t much care to go out there when it’s wet. I know I sure don’t like it, but let’s face it. Rain, shine, sleet, snow…dogs need to get out and go for a walk.
Luckily, we know how to make things just a bit easier when you have to walk dogs in the rain.
Tips for Managing Rainy Day Dogs.
It all starts with the right equipment.
- For us, that means a great raincoat for me and great raincoats for the dogs. I know, I know, dressing up dogs, right? It’s not for everyone. I’m not suggesting you get them bunny slippers or anything, but a good quality dog rain coat is actually more for me than it is for my dogs. Felix especially has fur that soaks up water like sponge towels. Keeping the rain off as much as him as possible can cut my grooming time literally in half. It’s crazy. I don’t have to blow dry him for longer than a few minutes, I don’t have to brush leaves and twigs out of his undercarriage, and he’s not so soggy wet that he leave a wet puddle where ever he stands. A good coat can also help prevent wet dog smell. I’m not even kidding. A good coat, along with some DIY Grooming Spray can help keep wet dog smell at bay.
- Keep your stuff and yourself dry. Even the best coats can get soaked in a downpour. After a lot of walks, even out leashes are soaked through and they take so long to dry. I hate that feeling of picking up a cold, damp leash and heading out into the cold. A friend of mine introduced me to the best kept secret of Soccer Moms everywhere: WaterSeal Spray. This stuff is meant to be sprayed on tents and outdoor fabrics, but it can work it’s magic on just about any lightweight fabric. I sprayed my coat, both dogs coats, a bunch of leashes, the dog collars, my gloves, a couple pairs of jeans…everything I could think of. It works like crazy. Kol’s Note: Since we shared this post, we’ve discovered the best leashes & collars for walking dogs in the rain. They wipe dry, they don’t hold odours and they’re totally rain proof. Check our our biothane leashes from Dog Walkies.)
- We know we’re going to come home wet more often than not. I’m prepared for this. I have a huge rug just inside my door and it has a rubberized bottom, so that when we’re dripping wet, we don’t soak the the carpet underneath. Don’t shy away from picking a huge area rug, after all, it’s protecting your floors. Area rugs can be replaced with ease, my beige carpet can not.
- I keep a storage box in the entry way, just to keep dog towels in. These are the towels we use to mop ourselves off when we get home from a walk. We have more dog towels than people towels! It’s important to have a bunch of them, otherwise you’ll be doing laundry constantly. I love using the super absorbent automotive towels. Those things sucks up anything.
- Baby wipes are my best friend. We use a good natural, unscented brand and they’re so easy for removing dirt and mud from dog paws. For two dogs that don’t much care for rain, they sure spend a lot of time traipsing through the mud.
- Invest in a good hair dryer. Felix is fluffy, yo. That hair holds a lot of water and if I waited for him to dry naturally, he would never get dry between walks. Not only that, letting a damp dog run around the house means you’re getting wet dog smell in your carpets, on your furniture and even in your clothes. It’s totally worth the extra 2 or 3 minutes to blow dry any areas not covered by his coat.
- Dog blankets are great. Kol’s not a big fan of the hair dryer and he’d rather be allowed to air dry. To protect my furniture from damp dog, we’ve taught him always to lie on his blankie. That way any dampness he leaves behind is on the blanket and I can just toss it on the wash to make it smell good as new.
What’s your best tip for dealing with dogs and the rain?