A VET has issued a serious warning to dog owners not to let their pooches walk in puddles.
It comes as thunderstorms, heavy rain and 65mph winds will batter Britain in the coming days.
As much as 40mm of rain could fall in just three hours today, while gusts could reach gale force speeds of 65mph in coastal areas.
Now a pooch expert has told how owners should be extra careful in the wet weather, and make sure that their furry friends don’t get sick.
Karen Heskin, Head of Pets at Pets at Home, explains: “It’s completely safe to walk dogs of all breeds and sizes in the rain.
“It’s actually important we make sure our pets are still getting their daily exercise, even in wet weather.
“But there are some things we should watch out for and extra steps we can take to help keep them happy and safe when it is raining outdoors.”
There are several ways in which rainy weather can be dangerous for dogs.
First of all large puddles should be avoided – despite how much they may like splashing in them.
This is because it could lead to injured paws – as its tough to see whats under the surface and sharp objects could be lurking below the water.
What is lungworm?
While some may assume their pooches will be OK without certain jabs and treatments, there is a common killer parasite that can be prevented when simple measures are taken.
Lungworm is a parasite that can cause serious health problems in dogs and can be fatal if not treated – it is now endemic across much of the UK.
All breeds of dogs can become infected and both young and old pets are susceptible – particularly those under two.
If your dog is known to eat slugs and snails they are considered high risk, according to lungworm.co.uk.
While lungworm can be treated, preventative measures are advised as the parasite can still be fatal.
If your dog is diagnosed with lungworm, treatment is easily available from vets and, once treated, most dogs make a full recovery when it is caught early.
If you are concerned your dog has picked up or could be at risk of picking up lungworm, make sure you speak to a vet as soon as possible.
Meanwhile wet weather also brings out slugs and snails – which can sometimes be carrying lungworm.
Dogs can easily gobble up infected slugs and snails, either accidentally while they munch on grass and drink from puddles, or deliberately.
To avoid lungworm owners are also advised to not leave their pets toys out in the garden overnight, to clear up their dog's poo as often as possible and regularly clean water bowls – especially if they're left outside.
This is because slugs and snails love crawling over these items and could contaminate them with parasite larvae.
Pets at Home also say owners should think about buying a doggy raincoat to stop them from getting soaked.
And once you return from a walk in the rain, make sure to dry your dog's fur thoroughly by patting their fur with a towel.
Finally it's also important to ensure their paws are completely dry too – especially between their toes and paw pads to avoid dermatitis.
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