Holi, popularly known as the Festival of Colours, marks the beginning of the Spring Season. In India, we celebrate Holi by smearing Gulaal on the face of our loved ones. Some of you will also be excited to include your pets in this joyous celebration. However, this festival that is beautiful to us is one of their worst nightmares.
Pets & stray animals get frightened & confused during the celebration. Often they fall prey to toxic colours, water balloons, water sprays & more. This may seem like a normal Holi ritual to you, but pets & stray animals find it threatening. So, it is necessary to assure pet care & animal safety in such times.
Animals are extremely sensitive to synthetic colours used in the Holi Celebration. The presence of lead in these colours have adverse effects on their health, like Skin Allergies, Irritation, Rashes, etc.
Being an animal lover it is one’s responsibility to look after pet care & animal safety. It is easy to keep strays & pets safe, by taking certain measures. To help fellow pet lovers we have jotted down tips & precautions that one must follow to ensure a Pet Friendly Holi.
Tips & Precautions:
1. Create Awareness among the people
Creating awareness is the foremost step for having a pet-friendly Holi. Most people are not aware of the harm caused to pets & stray animals by the use of colours in Holi. Thus, one should take it as a responsibility to educate others.
If you are an animal lover & want to spread the word of awareness for pet care & animal safety, then we have a few tips for you that will help you to increase awareness effectively.
- Educate the people about the harm caused to animals i.e. Hair loss, rashes, skin allergies, Nasal Irritation, Respiratory disease & in a few cases blindness & even death.
- You can forward this article to the Whatsapp Group of your colony or you can draft a message and broadcast it into your circle.
- You can also distribute flyers & stick posters near lifts & parking so that the message reaches the maximum number of people.
2. Shelter the Strays before Celebration begins
If you are a pet owner make sure you walk your pet early in the morning before the festival begins to eliminate their contact with harmful Holi Colours. Like every other colony, if yours also has stray cats & dogs residing then shift them to a safer place away from the festive ground.
You can shelter them in a nearby NGO, Safety huts, or an empty field, this will minimize the chances of injury & other health hazards caused to animals. If there are no shelters around, celebrate Holi at a designated place only, away from the reach of dogs & cats.
3. Clean- Up the Holi Celebration Mess
After the Holi Celebration, a lot of colour is found lying on the ground. When the celebration ends it is one’s responsibility to dust the colour off & dispose of the colour contaminated water.
If the clean-up is not done the stray animals might end up sleeping on it or consuming it. This will affect them with health hazards such as skin allergies, hair loss, irritation, slow poisoning causing them loose motion, vomit & diarrhea.
4. No Sweets for Pets
Like every Indian festival during Holi we consume Bhang, ladoos, ghugra, etc. Some of you feed it to pets & stray animals out of kindness. Their metabolism isn’t built to digest sugar & they’ll suffer from constipation. So, make sure you avoid doing that.
5. Use Mild Shampoos
If your pet has fallen prey to the colours, refrain from using harsh shampoos. Instead, use a special pet care shampoo that is mild on their fur & eyes to bathe them. If a balloon is hit directly on their face, wash their eyes thoroughly yet gently with clean water. Don’t let them lick themselves to clean the coloured spots as it might cause life-threatening diseases.
6. Do Visit the Vet
For your pet’s safety, a vet visit is necessary if your pet is having loose motions & Vomits after Holi. In such cases pet care is essential. If you observe a difference in the behavior of the dogs in your colony, i.e. increase in aggression, it is advisable to take them to the vet as well. There could be a possibility of them suffering from a severe condition. Approach the street dogs carefully.
Caring for pets and looking after animal safety during festivals is necessary, it is important that they also enjoy our festival without getting harmed. Every festival mainly conveys one meaning & that is to celebrate with everybody & to keep everyone safe. This Holi let’s make sure that your pets & their friends have a Happy Holi too!
Also, we have an idea!
You can spend Holi with your pet by scratching their backs & playing with their favorite toy. You can also order a Digital Pet Portrait to add a dash of colour to your Pet-Friendly Holi Celebration.