During the warm summer weather, you’ll most likely find yourself heading outside more. Whether you’re spending the day at a park, planning a trip to a beach, or going to the pool you’ll probably be applying ample amounts of sunscreen to protect yourself from those harmful UV Rays. You may be surprised to learn that your dog also needs protection from the sun. Even though they naturally get protection from their fur, they can still get burned. Sunburns cause discomfort and an increase in your dog’s risk of cancer, so you need to make sure you’re properly protecting them.
If you have a dog with short hair or your dog is losing hair their skin is going to need more protection. Without as much fur to cover up their skin, they are left exposed to those UV Rays. If you’re planning on heading out for a full day in the sun then just like you, your dog is going to need sunscreen reapplied as needed. Some pups just love laying out under the warm sun, not aware of the risks they are facing. So it’s your job to make sure your sun-loving canine is using the proper protection.
You can’t just use any old sunscreen lying around the house. Dog’s skin is more sensitive than ours and Zinc Oxide, a common ingredient found in many sunscreens, is toxic to them. There are sunscreens made specifically for dogs. If you’re having trouble finding any though, try using sunscreen made for babies or people with sensitive skin, but still, make sure it doesn’t contain any Zinc Oxide.
Even if you have selected a sunscreen you believe to be safe for your pup, they could still react to it negatively. It’s important that you test it on a small area of their skin first to make sure they don’t have any problems with it. When you have found the right sunscreen for your dog don’t just coat them in it. You only need to cover areas exposed to the sun. This could be areas between their back legs, their snout if it’s a lighter color, or any bald spot areas you might notice.
You may not be able to find any sunscreen your pup’s skin agrees with. If this is the case an alternative is using light clothing made to block the sun’s rays. Also, make sure your pup has a nice shaded place they can retreat to if needed.
And remember to keep your dog safe from the hot summer heat. Always ensure they have enough water, and be aware of the signs of dehydration and overheating.
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