Sun Protection for Pets
Sunburn and skin cancer can affect pets with light skin and short or thin hair coat. Pets shaved for cooling, or to check for ticks during summer can also suffer sunburn. Sunburn in pets appears as red skin or hair loss. It commonly occurs on the the bridge of the nose, and ear tips, and also on the belly of dogs who sunbake on their back.
The best way to minimize UV exposure in pets is to avoid the sun between 10am to 3pm. If that isn’t possible, then consider using sunscreen and sunsuits.
Some sunscreen products are specifically made for pets eg Filtabac (we sell this in our vet clinics 😊). Pet sunscreens are usually long-lasting and safe if licked. For cats, check the product labelling specifically states that it is safe for cats. Some human baby sunscreens are safe for pets but avoid human sunscreens that have ingestion warnings because these products may be toxic if licked by your dog or cat. Avoid zinc based suncreens because of the risk of licking. No matter what you choose, remember to apply liberally and then re-apply regularly during sun exposure.
Sun protective clothing can help protect dogs with thin hair coats and those who love to sunbake. Dog sun hats are available to protect dog noses but it can be difficult to protect the bridge of long nosed dogs. Unfortunately not many cats are willing to wear a hat!
Enjoy the summer with your pet protected from the sun