How to Tell If Your Dog Needs Sunscreen
- Your dog is losing hair. If your dog is allergic, undergoing chemotherapy, or dealing with hormonal changes, he may be shedding in many areas. This leads to some areas being left unprotected. In addition, some dogs are naturally hairless and thus require external protection.
- Your dog loves sunbathing. Some puppies just love the warm rays of the sun and there is no stopping them. Therefore, if your dog loves to spend time in the sun, it is your job to protect her. Apply sunscreen between the snouts (especially if they are pinkish) and back legs.
- Your dog spends a lot of time outdoors. Remaining outdoors for a quick walk is fine, but if you planning a camping trip or a day at the beach with your furry friend, bring along sunscreen for him, just as you would for yourself.
Which Sunscreen Should You Use?
It is important to remember that not all sunscreens are made equal, which means that if an option is safe for you, does not mean it is safe for your dog. Even sunscreens that are specially designed for dogs often don’t deliver the results and can actually prove harmful, especially if your dog licks it off his/her skin. Here are some important tips to keep in mind when buying sunscreen:
- Make sure the sunscreen factor or SPF of the sunscreen you are buying is 18 or at least above 15
- The product should be in a lotion form rather than a spray
- The key ingredient you should see listed on the bottle should be titanium dioxide
- The product should be completely fragrance free, or your dog could end up being allergic to different fragrances
- The sunscreen should also be free of paraben, since this chemical is certainly not what your dog needs
- Finally, it should contain plenty of skin conditioners, so look out for components, such as sunflower oil, jojoba oils, aloe juice, chamomile, and vitamin E
The Right Way to Apply Sunscreen on Your Dog
If your dog lacks hair on his or her tummy, you certainly want to cover that area, and anywhere else you can see actually see his/her skin. If your dog has short hair, just put some lotion on your hand, rub it all through his coat and work it into his skin. The essential oils will be helpful for his coat. Be sure to rub some on his nose as well, since the nose is exposed, and therefore vulnerable to sun damage. Since your dog will no doubt lick whatever you put on them, you must ensure the sunscreen is safe in case they consume it and one that will not make them sick or add to their health problems.
In addition, it is a good idea to keep your dog indoors during the hottest part of the day and away from the mid-day sun. In extremely hot climates, your dog may feel extremely hot fast and even suffer a heat stroke, especially if your dog remains indoors most of the time and your home is air-conditioned.