Sun Protection And You
Hello! Welcome back. It is hot out there today, isn’t it? It’s just way too warm for leggings and a long-sleeved tee [my usual choice]. Adjusting my wardrobe for the warmer weather is always fun. Because we are indoors with air conditioning, most of us [ I know that I am not alone] wear layers of clothing that’s comfy but covers more skin to ward off the occasional chill that comes from blasting the blessed thermostat into sub-zero temperatures as our own measure of ‘comfort’ begins to register.
Anyhow, I am watching Sophia shiver a bit, and then I make the necessary thermostat adjustment. We are preparing for our Lunch hour walk and the environmental swing really rests with her. I grab the lead and the poo bags, and the paw balm and the sunscreen.
What?? Too much?? No, it’s not. I know she’s got the insurance coverages but why put Sophia in the awkward position of prolonged discomfort due to sun exposure? Paws, noses, ears, tails, tummies, and private parts can burn during warm weather exposure. As pet parents, we simply must prepare for these temperature swings for the dogs the same as we do for ourselves.
Depending upon the breed of dog, sometimes the entire body of the dog may suffer due to over-exposure to the sun, as in the case of the Chinese Crested.
Other breeds requiring special consideration:
- Peruvian Inca Orchid
- American Hairless Terrier
Let’s take a look at sun protection for both of us [you and your dog].
I Don’t Need To Do That…Do I?
Well, that depends on who you are. I’ll share with you right now that I get a lot of flack for so-called ‘babying’ Sophia. Yup. I have been accused of spoiling her and treating her as if human. But, know what I say? It’s common sense. The dog’s experience during outdoor activity is NOT my experience. Think on this for a moment. Whenever we prepare for a walk, a great pair of shoes is the first thing that I grab. Sophia, on the other hand, on most days, does not wear footgear. During the snowy months, yes sir…she’s got boots on to protect her from frost-bite and winterizers [salts]. During the spring and summer, she’s natural. Have you ever walked barefoot on the asphalt on a day when the temperature reaches 82 degrees? The dogs do it all the time. How do you think it feels? Grassy areas help to lessen the burning and searing sensation, but you do see where I am going with this.
The same applies to rear-end care for dogs. On that same hot and blistering day, I can be seen with a guffaw on my face as I observe pet parents commanding their pets to ‘sit’ while they wait for the traffic light to change before crossing the street. Boy doggies… I sympathize with you! I’d like to see the opposite of this. If you can ever swing it, walk your dad to the corner on a hot day [no pants or skivvies of course] then tell himself to have a seat…just for a moment…go on…. that wouldn’t go over well. And for all dogs, boys and girls…my heart goes out to you. I do not wish to see your anus sizzle against the pavement. Proximity is important! I can see all of the shocked pet parent faces now saying, it’s not actually touching the asphalt — so that’s how I know it’s okay.
hmmph! How do you know the griddle is hot? Do you touch it? Or do you just get close to it to know? Anyway….
It’s Hot Out
Humans benefit from sunscreen usage, obviously. The skin protection keeps your skin tone even, for one. And two, it reduces the risk of developing a fatal cancer. Besides, owning great-looking moisturized, young-looking skin is a worthy goal! Besides, there are many choices available on the market [I go for the full-sized products vs the travel-sized products, personally] and you’ll have a great time shopping for your individual choice, weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, or however often your sun protection requires replenishing.
But, can you use your sun protection on Scruffy? I mean, it couldn’t hurt, right? WRONG. Sun protection for humans is not to be used as sun protection for the dogs too. You could do damage, unfortunately.
When you do decide to take the plunge and utilize sunscreen on your furbaby, a few rules apply.
It is of the utmost importance that you apply only formulas which have been manufactured specifically for use as a sunscreen for a dog. Your product should never contain any zinc oxide or any PABA [para-aminobenzoic acids]. Don’t think that the dog won’t lick their skin and coat after application. These ingredients are toxic to dogs. So, if ingested you’ll be faced with monitoring for GI upset. GI upset is significant enough that it can result in dehydration. Dehydration is a whole ‘nother’ article but do watch for vomiting [with and without diarrhea], panting, and dry nose if ingestion occurs.
Thank you! Please come back for more updates and be sure to visit us at Facebook and YouTube.