Should you put sunscreen on your dog? What to Know

What Is the Best Sunscreen for Dogs?

The safest and most effective sunscreen to put on your dogs is one that is specifically designed for canine use, says Dr. Rosales. These sunscreens are designed with dogs in mind and don’t pose any health risks.

If dog sunscreen isn’t available, Dr. Goldstein says that pet parents can purchase a broad-spectrum sunscreen for babies and children with an SPF of 15 or higher.

It’s EXTREMELY important for pet parents to read the labels on baby sunscreen before applying it, since dogs may lick their skin and accidentally ingest the sunscreen, many of which contain ingredients that are potentially toxic if ingested.

“When choosing baby sunscreen, pet owners should choose a fragrance-free product that doesn’t contain zinc oxide,” Dr. Rosales explains. “Ingestion of zinc oxide can lead to hemolytic anemia.”

Titanium dioxide is widely regarded as being a safe active ingredient in sunscreens for dogs, but when in doubt, ask your veterinarian for a recommendation. Never apply tanning lotions or oils to your pet.

How to Apply Your Dog’s Sunscreen

“Pet owners may want to apply the sunscreen to a small area on the body first to see if it causes a reaction before using it all over the body,” Dr. Rosales says. She adds, “When applying sunscreen to the face region, it is important to be careful with it getting into the eyes.”

After applying sunscreen, allow the lotion or cream to soak in or set for several minutes, and monitor your dog to be sure they doesn’t lick it, says Dr. Rosales.

Which Dog Breeds Are More Likely to Get Sunburned?

“White dogs with short hair, like Bull Terriers, Pit Bulls, Dalmatians, French Bulldogs, Greyhounds, and Boxers, are more susceptible to sunburn than dogs with darker skin and thicker coats,” Dr. Goldstein points out.

Still, even though these breeds are more likely to burn, all pet parents should consider the use of sunscreen for their dogs in the summer.

WHY YOU SHOULD PUT SUNSCREEN ON YOUR DOG – Sun Protection for Dogs – Dr Kate Adams – Bondi Vet