Holi 2022: As much as we love to play Holi and forget our worries during the festival of colours, when it comes to our pets, protecting them from all the festive madness (which may trigger anxiety in them), artificial colours, and of course sweet treats should be one of the top priorities for pet parents. (Also read: Holi 2022: How to celebrate safe Holi during pandemic)
Experts advise that before you soak yourself in the spirit of Holi, spend some time with your pets to settle their anxiety – buy them a nice toy and treat them to their favorite food, so that they can cope with the change in routine. It is always better to use organic and natural colors if your pet is around while you are playing Holi, but if you can’t, keep your pet away from artificial colors as the chemicals in them could trigger allergies and other health problems if they lick them.
Keeping the pets away from sweet treats is also one big challenge as they can be harmful for our pets. Prepare healthy holi treats for them and make sure they gorge on only pet-friendly snacks.
Dr Vinod Sharma, Head of Veterinary Services at DCC Animal Hospital and Dr Narendra Pardeshi, India’s leading Vet Surgeon from Small Animal Clinic, Pune give tips to safeguard your pets as you enjoy the festival of Holi.
Let them play with toys; spend some time with them
The loud noises and so many people outside can get very overwhelming for them. They should have at least one family member or friend they are familiar with to give them company to them at all times. You can even give them some extra treats, or their favorite toy or blanket to make them feel comfortable, and check in on them every now and then.
Keep them away from colors
Make sure your pet doesn’t come in contact of the chemicals in the colors as they can be very toxic for their skin and fur. If colors enter their eyes or ears, it can actually cause blindness, or severe infections, which take a long time to heal. Prevent you pet from licking any surfaces stained by these colors as it could cause a host of allergies, vomiting, diarrhea, rashes, and more. Water balloons can hurt the pet. So, avoid using balloons. Keep the balloons and colors away from the pet’s eyes too.
Skincare for pets
Apply some coconut oil on the pet’s skin to ensure the color doesn’t stick. If you wish to take your pet for a walk during Holi then do that early morning. Use shampoos that are only meant for the pets to wash off the color. Avoid using chemical products for pets that can cause allergies. If the pet is smeared in color, do not use kerosene or spirit to remove the color. Doing so is a strict no-no.
Do not feed them sweet or fried treats
Holi is also a time for delectable sweets, thandai, lassi, and a whole range of pakodes and snacks. But while we might relish them in troves, we cannot feed any of them to our pets. From the sugar content in them to the spices, the oils, and many other ingredients, these festive delights, along with most human foods, are not meant for our pets. So, if you’d like to make sure your pets don’t miss out on the celebrations, make or buy specific treats for your pets that are meant for them. Make sure to keep the pet hydrated and ensured he/she eats food.
Observe their behavior
Pay attention to how they are reacting, whether they look stressed, anxious, or calm, because when they feel scared or threatened, many pets tend to act out, either through aggression or by peeing in spaces they know they aren’t supposed to.