Can cats get sunburns?
When it comes to our feline friends it is very easy to either not consider or dismiss the possible harmful effects of the sun on their skin.
The truth is, their skin is very similar to ours, (give or take some fur!), and, as such, is just as prone to sunburns as ours. Of course, not all cats have the same risks of getting sunburned and we need to be a little more careful with some that are more at risk.
Cats who have light, short hair are at most risk but even cats with abundant dark fur can still get burned in places with less hair density such as ears and around the nose. Why is this important? It means their skin can be damaged by solar radiation, which can be both immediately painful if it gets burnt and also have long-term consequences due to increasing the chances of certain types of cancers developing.
Sunburns are a big risk factor for squamous cell carcinoma, a skin cancer that can be quite hard to manage as it invades surrounding tissues very easily. So, please keep an eye out for injuries or burn on your cat's ears and face, if you see red and tender skin that's a good indication that something might be wrong. You can help prevent this by applying pet-safe sunscreen, keeping your cats away from the sun during the noon hours and providing them with a lot of shady places they can hide in.
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