Do Dogs Need Sunscreen for Sun Protection?
On a typical day in this peak scorching heat, using sunscreen is an essential skincare routine that people cannot afford to skip on any given day, whether they are out for a stroll in the park, having a picnic on the beach to beat the heat, or simply running errands. Long-term UV (ultraviolet) radiation exposure from the sun has been related to an increased risk of skin cancer and vision problems. But what about our four-legged companions? Are our dogs just as prone to sunburn as humans?
In many cases, the answer is yes — dogs are susceptible to sunburn and other problems and illnesses brought on by exposure to the sun, just like humans, especially on areas of the body with little to no hair. Taking specific precautions can reduce the chances of your dog suffering from any sun-related issues. Using sunscreen for dogs may help you ameliorate this conundrum.
The Risks of Sun Exposure for Dogs
Not only does sunburn cause discomfort in dogs, but it may also lead to more significant health issues, such as skin carcinomas, including squamous cell carcinoma, malignant melanomas, and hemangiomas. Apart from that, sunburn may cause old surgical sites to become irritated and exacerbate conditions like dermatitis and other inflammatory disorders. Fortunately, a little caution beforehand can help avoid overexposing your dog to ultraviolet (UV) radiation.
Which Dog Breeds Are More Susceptible to a Sunburn?
Some dog breeds are particularly more susceptible to sunburn than others. Hairless dog breeds like the Xoloitzcuintli, Chinese Crested, and American Hairless Terrier need sunscreen to protect them from the sun’s harmful radiation. White or thinly coated pups with pale pigmented noses, ears, and eyelids, such as Australian Sheepdogs, Whippets or many others are more prone to sunburn than their counterparts. Certain dogs with heavy fur might also lose their hair due to seasonal shedding or medical conditions, which makes their coats extremely thin, putting them at more risk for sunburn.
Sunscreen for Dogs
Dogs are shielded from sunburn with sunscreen. But picking the wrong sunscreen might also lead to issues. It’s crucial that you only apply sunscreen products designed exclusively for pets. As dogs frequently lick their skin and inadvertently absorb sunscreen, they shouldn’t include zinc oxide or para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA) since these substances are hazardous if consumed by dogs. Another great choice is sunscreen for dogs that is waterproof, odorless, and has a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30.
How to Apply Your Dog’s Sunscreen
A pet parent’s most common query is how to apply sunscreen on their active puppy. Being cautious is the first and most important response to the question! To ensure it won’t trigger an allergic response:
- Try a tiny quantity of sunscreen on one area first.
- Apply the sunscreen to the areas most exposed to the sun, including the inner thighs, crotch, skin around the lips, and the bridge of the nose.
- Try to be extra careful not to get any of the sunscreens on your dog’s eyes while applying it to his head.
- After applying the sunscreen, keep an eye out to ensure your dog doesn’t lick it off for 10 to 15 minutes so it can absorb.
Although it’s a good idea to include sunscreen in your dog’s summertime wellness routines, a pet owner should be mindful of the dangers of prolonged sun exposure.
In the summer, dogs are susceptible to heatstroke and probable sunburns. On such hot days, it’s crucial to ensure that your dog has access to water and shade to keep them safe.
Sunscreen also shouldn’t give pet owners a false feeling of security that their animal won’t develop skin cancer. The most straightforward strategy to protect a dog from the sun’s damaging rays is to keep them inside from 10 am to 4 pm.