Can Dogs Play in the Rain?

By John Martin - July 17, 2022

Dog playing in the rain

Dogs love to play. Most dogs are highly energetic and love prancing around in the great outdoors.

One of the things that certain dogs enjoy most is playing while the skies are pouring. While they may not see an issue with their rainy day playtime, it can be worrying for canine parents.

Is it safe for them to play in the rain? Why do they like the rain? What can you do about it? Read on to find out!

Can Dogs Play in the Rain?

There is nothing wrong with letting your dog enjoy some playtime in the rain. Some dogs love playing outside while it pours. The first sign of rain activates their playful center and makes them antsy to enjoy the water.

While it is okay to allow them to play in the rain and get wet in moderation, there are certain things you should know to ensure your pup remains safe and has a good time.

Before you let your pet out in the rain, make sure they have no open wounds. Even the smallest of wounds can get infected in the rain. Do not let your pet out if they are recovering from an illness like a cold. If they have a sickness or an injury, you will have to pump the brakes on their rainy day playtime.

Another important thing to keep in mind is not to leave your furry friend unsupervised. Even if your dog is running around in your backyard, do not leave them alone when it is raining.

You should be particularly cautious when there are strong winds as the risk of injury is higher. Strong winds could knock out branches, electric wires, etc., and injure your dog.

Therefore, if you are letting your canine friend out into the rain, keep an eye on them.

Why Does Your Dog Like Rain?

While we think rains are disruptive to our plans, some dogs find rain exciting. They enjoy getting wet and dirty in muddy puddles.

However, this is not true for every dog. Some dogs shy away from rain and want to stay indoors. They dislike the loud sounds that accompany rains like thunder. It can be confusing and uncomfortable for them.

If your furball enjoys the rain and wants to be outside once it starts raining, there is nothing wrong with them. There are a few reasons why some dogs like rain more than others.

They Like the Smell

One of the most vital attributes of a dog is their sense of smell. Their snoot has over 100 million sensory receptors as opposed to six million in our nasal cavity. This incredible sense is particularly heightened when it rains. The moisture in the air amplifies every scent in the surrounding region.

They enjoy every scent that comes alive when the raindrops hit the ground. Their curiosity gets aroused, and it acts as mental stimulation for them when they set out to explore all the different scents.

In fact, wet weather is ideally the best time to let hunting dogs do their job. The heightened sense of smell allows them to track their target easily.

They Are Bored

If you have confined your canine friends indoors to keep them out of the rain, it is possible they will get bored, especially if they are an energetic breed.

Staying indoors is particularly taxing for the dogs that love the outdoors.

So, to relieve this boredom and break out of the indoor prison, they may try to sneak outdoors to run around in the rain, not caring about the wet state of affairs.

It Is Hot Inside

If your indoor environment is warm, your dog will prefer to go outside in the rain and enjoy the cool breeze.

Most dogs are less active when the temperatures are hot. Therefore, if the temperatures are low outside, their sense of playfulness will perk up, and they will run around in the rain to cool off.

While some dogs are averse to water, others love splashing around in it. Rainy days fill them with a sense of adventure and fun, and they want to play in the mud and get wet.

It Is Mating Time

If your dog is on the hunt for a mating partner, rainy days are the best time for them to seek out an appropriate partner. Since wet days alleviate their sense of smell, they can more easily perceive the scents of different animals and pheromones in the air than on dry days.

These pheromone signals wafting through the atmosphere trigger a response and get your dog antsy to be outside in the rain.

Can Rain Affect a Dog’s Health?

While your dog may enjoy running around and playing in the rain, you should be aware that this can adversely affect their health.

As with humans, the combination of rain and cold weather can result in inflamed and irritated lungs. If they have spent a prolonged time in the rain, they can develop certain respiratory issues.

Rainwater puddles are also carriers of certain infectious diseases like giardia and leptospirosis. If your dog drinks from such puddles or licks the contaminants off their fur, they are at risk of becoming severely ill.

If you notice your dog showing symptoms like diarrhea, lethargy, loss of appetite, or vomiting after a splash in the rain, take them to a vet right away.

Additionally, if your pet shows respiratory symptoms like wheezing, runny nose, coughing, and shallow breathing, consult a vet immediately for the right course of treatment.

Besides the risk of getting sick, there is also a chance they may get injured when they are outside during turbulent rains.

How to Keep Your Dog Safe on Rainy Days

Whether you are letting your dog out in the backyard when it rains or taking them on walks, there are certain aspects you should take care of to ensure the safety of your pup.

As mentioned earlier, supervising their playtime is the most important thing to do when it is raining. Besides that, you can also let your dog play in the rain without letting them get all muddy and wet.

Invest in a good doggy raincoat and doggy boots. This will allow your pet to splash around in muddy pools to their heart’s content without getting wet or getting a lick of mud on their paws or fur.

If you are going around the block while it is raining, put your dog on a short leash. This will allow you to control them if they panic at any sudden noises like thunderclaps.

Once you are inside, you should prepare a lukewarm bath to clean your pet. The warm water will stabilize the body temperature and get rid of any dirt and bacteria. Rains increase the risk of infection. Therefore, it is important to properly clean and dry your dog after a rainy day playtime session.

Also Read: What Happens If My Dog Eats a Frog?

The Takeaway

Dogs are rambunctious creatures who love to play. While not every dog is fond of the rain, some really enjoy it. If your dog loves playing out in the rain, can you let them?

The bottom line is if they love playing in the rain, there is no harm in letting them do so as long as you supervise them and follow proper instructions to get them clean and dry again.