Are you aware that your pets can get sunburned? Maybe a lot of you out there have never thought about this, but it is a reality that you might want to face if you value your pet’s health.
Let us think about this for a minute. When you go outside and expose your skin to the sun, what are the possibilities? If your skin tone is dark enough you might just tan. If your skin tone is light, there is a strong possibility that you will burn instead.
Seriously, have you ever thought about your pet’s skin tone? It actually has to do with the color of their fur. Lighter haired dogs and cats are more susceptible to getting sunburned than darker haired varieties.
Think Dalmatians, poodles, other light haired dogs and cats with white fur or golden fur. Also, if your doggie likes to lay belly up in the sun, the sensitive skin there could become burned easily. Other sensitive areas to watch are the tips of the ears, the skin surrounding the mouth, and the nose.
So what if your pet does get burned? The skin could be reddened or you may notice a change in the color of the skin or even dark spots. What can happen to a sunburned pet? Think about it like this, what can happen to a human that gets sunburned.
It will be painful, then itchy, and then peel, right? Those are the short term effects, yes but what are the long term effects? Just like humans, sunburns are a leading cause in skin cancer for dogs and cats.
Skin cancer can be quite serious and there are actually three particular kinds to keep an eye out for with your pets. They are the cancers known as hemangioma, squamous and basal cell carcinoma. These can actually lead to tumors.
How do you prevent this? The answer to this is simple. Leading veterinarians suggest using sunscreen on your pets to serve as protection if they will have prolonged exposure to the sun. You can actually use human sunscreen on them, but be careful because if they lick it too much, it can be toxic for them.
If this is the case, take a trip to your local pet store and pick up one of the sunscreens that are specially made for pets. Apply this to your pet every 4 to 6 hours during the time when they will be in the sunlight and they should be fine.