Along with a towel, bathing suit and sunscreen, pet owners bringing their pup poolside should consider their dog’s needs as well, notes Dr. Rob Proietto, founder of Proietto Veterinary Services in New York City.
Dogs with thin or light coats can get sunburned, so be sure to grab some (pet-friendly) sunscreen! “We used to recommend baby sunscreen that does not contain zinc (as this can be toxic to dogs), but there are now plenty of good pet-friendly sunscreens available,” Proietto tells The Dodo. Rub the sunscreen on your dog’s most vulnerable areas, including the tips of the ears, the nose and the belly to protect her from harmful UV rays — or worse. “Too much exposure without sunblock can cause burns and cancers much like in humans.”
Those heading to the pool during peak hours, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. when the sun’s rays are strongest, should be sure to have plenty of fresh water and shade available for dogs, as overheating can be a serious issue. If your pup is sensitive to the weather, try to hit the pool in the early morning or evening when temperatures are cooler — and snag a spot with an umbrella.