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Most dogs love to play outside in the sun, but it can be dangerous without the best dog sunscreen. Dogs can get sunburned like humans can, so it’s up to us to protect their sensitive skin. The nose, near the lips, the tips of the ears, and the belly are the most likely to get burned, but any areas without thick hair are at risk.
So, we’ve compiled a list of the best dog sunscreen products to help you narrow down your search. It’s a good idea to talk to your vet before purchasing so you can be sure to choose one that’s safe and effective for your canine companion. Also, make sure your dog has access to shade and water whenever they’re playing outside.
Buyer’s Guide: Dog Sunscreen
When choosing the best sunscreen for your canine companion, it’s important to keep a few key factors in mind, including the following.
The first and foremost concern should be your pet’s safety. Avoid products with ingredients that could be harmful if ingested by your dog. Zinc oxide, a common ingredient in human sunscreens, is toxic to dogs and should be avoided. Instead, look for sunscreens specifically designed for dogs, and always consult with your vet if you’re unsure about a product.
Just like sunscreens for humans, a good dog sunscreen should offer broad-spectrum protection. This means it should protect against both UVA and UVB rays. Many products also moisturize your dog’s skin and coat as a bonus.
Dog sunscreens come in various forms, such as sprays, sticks, wipes, and balms. Choose a product that suits your pet’s needs and your application preferences. Spray sunscreens are easy to apply all over your dog, but a stick or balm might be a better option for targeted application, like on the ears or nose.
If your dog enjoys water activities, it’s crucial to choose a waterproof sunscreen. Remember, no sunscreen is fully waterproof and should be reapplied after your dog goes swimming or gets wet.
Look for sunscreens with natural, non-toxic ingredients. Some dog sunscreens also contain items like aloe vera or coconut oil that can moisturize and soothe your dog’s skin. Some ingredients may even give the sunscreen a pleasant scent.
Best Dog Sunscreen Products
Epi-Pet’s K-9 Care Sunscreen stands out as a top-tier choice for dog owners wanting to provide their pets with comprehensive protection against harmful UV rays. This product is the only pet sunscreen approved by the FDA, and it’s developed by veterinarians. It’s a non-greasy, quick-drying spray that protects from both UVA and UVB rays. It’s also designed to prevent skin and coat damage, reduce sunburn, and protect against skin cancer. Most importantly, this sunscreen is safe for dogs to lick, ensuring the health of your pet even if they ingest some of the product.
Emmy’s Best Pet Products Sun Skin Protector Spray shields your dog’s skin from harmful UVA and UVB rays, and it also has a moisturizing property to keep your pet’s skin healthy and hydrated. It uses shea butter and coconut oil to keep your pup’s skin and coat healthy. The easy-to-apply spray formula allows for quick application even on furry pets, and it won’t leave their coat feeling greasy. Furthermore, it’s a non-toxic product, ensuring safety even if your dog happens to lick it off.
My Dog Nose It Moisturizing Sun Protection Balm is a specialized product designed to offer sun protection specifically for your dog’s nose, but it can also be effective on other sensitive areas, such as the ears or belly. Crafted to prevent painful sunburns and reduce the risk of skin cancer, this balm provides a protective layer that reflects harmful UVA and UVB rays. The formula dries quickly and is water-resistant, making it a great option for dogs who love to swim or engage in outdoor activities. It also includes moisturizing elements, helping to soothe dry noses and maintain overall skin health.
Petkin’s Dog Sunscreen Sunstick offers a convenient and compact solution for pet owners wanting to protect their furry friends from the sun’s harmful rays. The protective formula shields your pet’s skin from both UVA and UVB radiation, mitigating the risk of sunburn and skin damage. In addition to its sun-protective qualities, the Sunstick is also enriched with moisturizing ingredients, ensuring that your dog’s skin remains hydrated and healthy. It’s not greasy or sticky, and it’s veterinarian-approved. When you want to remove it, you can simply rinse it off.
Also available at Petco
Warren London’s Dog Sunscreen Spray is a thoughtfully formulated product designed to offer robust sun protection for dogs. The non-oily and non-irritating formulation protects from harmful UVA and UVB rays, helping prevent sunburn and reduce the risk of skin cancer. After spraying it and rubbing it into your dog’s coat, it dries within seconds. Additionally, the product has soothing aloe vera, which nourishes your dog’s skin and leaves their coat soft and shiny. While most sunscreen products have an unusual smell, this one has a pleasant citrus scent.
Bodhi Dog Sunscreen is a non-toxic, paraben-free sunscreen spray. It’s designed to safeguard your pet from dangerous UVA and UVB rays, helping to prevent sunburn and reduce the risk of skin cancer. In addition to its sun protection capabilities, this product also enhances your pet’s coat shine. It’s an ideal choice for all coat types and breeds, and it’s most effective for noses, ears, and hairless breeds. When you want to use it, just spray it on your dog 15 minutes before they need to go outside. It’s non-greasy and works well for dogs, cats, and horses.
This organic sunscreen truly puts the safety and well-being of your dog at the forefront. Crafted with an all-natural, certified organic, and hypoallergenic formula, this sunscreen offers protection from harmful UVA and UVB rays. Its ingredients are safe and non-toxic, even if licked or ingested by your pet, making it a worry-free choice for pet parents. Beyond its protective capabilities, the product also boasts moisturizing properties that help maintain your dog’s skin health and coat shine. The convenient balm form ensures easy application and is especially suitable for sensitive areas such as the nose and ears. It’s also waterproof to cater to dogs who love to swim.
Petkin also has convenient sunscreen wipes for dogs. These easy-to-use wipes are saturated with a protective sunscreen that guards against both UVA and UVB rays. The wipes are particularly useful for dogs with short hair or for applying sunscreen to exposed areas like the nose and ears. They also make reapplication throughout the day a breeze, especially for active pets. The wipes are non-greasy and won’t leave any residue on your dog’s coat, making them an excellent choice for maintaining your pet’s comfort and cleanliness. They’re veterinarian-approved, and they have a pleasant vanilla coconut scent.
Handy Hound’s SnoutScreen is an innovative product designed to provide targeted sun protection for one of your dog’s most vulnerable areas: their nose. Formulated using natural, organic ingredients such as coconut oil and shea butter, this sunscreen creates a protective barrier that reflects harmful UVA and UVB rays. In addition to offering sun protection, it also provides hydration and soothes the delicate skin on your dog’s nose, making it perfect for all-season use. Its natural ingredients are non-toxic, ensuring your pet’s safety even if licked off.
Frequently Asked Questions About Dog Sunscreen
Do Dogs Need Sunscreen?
Yes, many dogs need sunscreen. Just like humans, dogs can suffer from sunburn and skin damage from UV rays. This can lead to skin cancer in the long term. Dogs with short, thin, or light-colored coats are particularly vulnerable. Noses, ears, and bellies are the most common parts of a dog to get sunburnt.
Can I Use Human Sunscreen on My Dog?
No, you shouldn’t use human sunscreen on a dog. While it may seem convenient to use your sunscreen on your dog, many human sunscreens contain ingredients that can be harmful to dogs if ingested, such as zinc oxide. Always use sunscreen specifically formulated for dogs to ensure safety.
How Do You Apply Dog Sunscreen?
Applying dog sunscreen is straightforward and involves spreading the product evenly on all exposed skin, including the nose, ears, underbelly, and bald spots. For sprays or liquids, you can use your hands or a cloth to gently massage the product into the skin and coat. If your dog tends to lick off the sunscreen, try to distract them for a few minutes to allow the sunscreen to absorb or dry.
How Often Should I Apply Sunscreen to My Dog?
It depends on the specific product, so it’s best to follow the manufacturer’s instructions. However, as a general rule, sunscreen should be reapplied every 2 to 4 hours or after your dog gets wet.
What Areas of a Dog Are Most Susceptible to Sunburn?
Areas where your dog’s skin is most exposed are the most vulnerable. This often includes the nose, ears, underbelly, and any bald or thinly-haired spots.
Can Dogs Smell Through Sunscreen?
Dogs have a remarkably acute sense of smell and can often detect scents even when sunscreen has been applied. The application of sunscreen shouldn’t significantly affect a dog’s overall ability to smell, as the product is typically applied on the skin and fur rather than near the nostrils. However, if the sunscreen has a strong scent, it might temporarily overwhelm some of the other scents in the dog’s immediate environment.
Can I Use Sunscreen on a Puppy?
It depends. Puppies have sensitive skin and may require a product designed specifically for young dogs. It’s always best to consult with a vet before applying any new product to your puppy’s skin.
What Should I Do if My Dog Licks Sunscreen Off?
Most dog sunscreens are made to be non-toxic if ingested in small amounts. However, ingestion can reduce the effectiveness of the sunscreen. Try to distract your dog or give them a chew toy after application to minimize licking.
Keeping your dog safe from the sun doesn’t need to be a difficult task. With the best dog sunscreen product, you can easily apply sun protection and enjoy sunny days with your canine companion. Always remember to check for potentially harmful ingredients, and when in doubt, consult with your vet. Along with sunscreen, ensure your dog has plenty of shade and water during hot weather to prevent overheating and dehydration. With these protective measures, your furry friend can safely bask in the sunshine.