5 Sun Safety Tips for Dogs

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July 11, 2011
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There’s something incredibly cute about a dog laying in the sun, rolling around on grass, and playing outside. Your dog needs some protection from those harmful rays just like you do. Sure, let her play and romp about in the sun but keep an eye on her too to make sure she’s not getting burned.

Here are 5 tips to help your dog enjoy summer:

1: If your dog has a long coat, you may opt to shave it down to help cool her during the summer but shaving her fur too short can expose her skin to the sun. The fur acts as a barrier to deflect the sun and also helps regulate body temperature. Regular brushing to remove the loose fur and undercoat is great and a haircut to trim some of the fur is enough to help your pup carry a lighter load of fur.

2: Protect your dog if she’s a sunbather! Some dogs will lay in the sun on their backs which exposes their stomach to the sun. This exposes the furless area and can cause sunburn, irritation, and rash. If your dog is a lighter skinned dog with a pink nose, she’s at a higher risk of burning. Don’t let your dog bathe too long, look for panting and feel her skin. If she’s hot, take her in.

3: If your dog has a sunburn, a soothing cool bath and a gentle shampoo like Theraneem can heal the burn. Keep her out of the sun for long periods of time for the next few days as the burn heals and watch for blisters and other signs of a bad burn.

4: If you have a dog that has a thin coat, or white fur, you may want to look for sunscreen. There are a few brands that are specifically made for our canine companions but make sure they are not toxic. You may want to consult your vet about brands or ingredients that are safe.

5: If your dog was shaved for a surgery or something that was necessary, consider buying a doggie shirt or using a t-shirt that will fit snuggly but not too tightly to protect from the rays.

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