Is Sunscreen Safe to Use On Pets?

The fun-in-the-sun months have officially arrived, which means it’s time to start thinking about sun protection. For those that spend time outside, sunscreen is usually a priority. But did you know that our furry family members can also suffer from damaging effects from the sun?

Hairless dogs or dogs that are light colored, or have short fur or have white or pink skin are susceptible to sunburn. In addition, some breeds have a higher propensity to skin tumors, such as boxers, Weimaraners and Dobermans.

Before you lather or spray your dog or cat down with sunscreen, you must check the ingredients!

Can I use human sunscreen on my pet?

The answer is no. Not all products are OK to use on a pet. Most sunscreens contain zinc oxide, an ingredient that’s effective for humans, but it’s toxic for dogs and cats. If ingested, it can damage your pet’s red blood cells and cause them to explode. The resulting anemia can be severe and require a blood transfusion.

For cats, you’ll need to avoid Octisalate and acetylsalicylic acid, which are salicylates that are frequent in sunscreens. Even a slight dose of salicylate can land your feline in the kitty ICU.

Pet-Specific Products

There’s only one FDA Compliant and safe pet sunscreen available on the market, and that is Epi-Pet Sun Protector Spray. This SPF 30 sunscreen is veterinarian-developed, provides broad spectrum protection, and its valve spray is easy to apply to even the wiggliest of dogs.

Epi Pet Sunscreen Charlie the Dachshund

Charlie the Dachshund with Epi Pet Sunscreen

This sunscreen is not formulated for cats, but it’s great for dogs for more reasons than one:

  • Prevents sunburns and reducing exposure to damaging UVA and UVB rays
  • It is the only pet sunscreen tha tmeets the FDA guidelines for ingredient stability
  • Waterproof
  • Quick dry formulation
  • Non-greasy, and doesn’t leave an oily film like human sunscreens
  • Includes sunscreen ingredients that rate equivalent to 30-40 SPF in human sunscreens
  • Valve spray can is environmentally friendly and provides constant spray from all angles
  • Contains vitamin E and other ingredients that act as antioxidants and skin enrichers
  • It offers a pleasant vanilla fragrance after application

If your dog is a boater or a beach bum, you should definitely give this sunscreen a try. If you’d like to learn more about Epi-Pet sunscreen, click here.