Source: BridportNews (Extract)
Posted: July 16, 2021

Most Brits will be basking in the sunshine and slapping on the sun cream to protect their skin- but it’s important to remember that animals can get sunburn too.

Many cats love soaking up the sunshine, choosing the warmest spots in the garden to enjoy.

Make sure you take precautions to avoid your cat getting dehydrated or sunburnt.

Cats Protection, which helps around 200,000 cats each year, says that pale-coloured cats, or cats that have unpigmented white noses or ears, are at particular risk from the sun’s rays which can cause sunburn and skin cancer.

Last year, the charity has to remove a cat’s ears after they were severely sunburnt.

It can take a few years before the damage is visible but once the early stages of cancer set in, cats require urgent veterinary treatment to prevent it spreading.

Felines can suffer long term damage including, in severe cases, having to have their ear tips removed.   

Here are some tips to protect your cat from the harmful effects of the sun:

  • Keep pet cats indoors when the sun is at its hottest, typically between 10am and 3pm
  • Speak to a vet about a suitable sunscreen for pet cats
  • Provide plenty of shade for pet cats when they are outdoors, such as providing cat hides, large cardboard boxes or plant plots placed close together
  • Always provide an outdoor water bowl to minimise the risk of your cat becoming dehydrated

Skin damage aside, you should also try to keep your cat cool even if it is inside.

Cats Protection recommend placing fans around the house to keep the air circulating- but remembering not to point the fan directly at your cat.

Another handy tip is to freeze a bottle of water, wrap it in a towel or pillowcase and place it somewhere your cat goes regularly.

This stops them from feeling overheated during hotter spells.

Remember to ensure that your cat can get away from the bottle if they chose to, and make sure the bottle does not leak!

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