This is Sun Awareness Week where we turn our attention to raising awareness of the dangers of skin cancer. Though, it’s not only humans that are at risk when soaking up the rays. Leading feline charity, CATS PROTECTION, have highlighted the dangers of feline sunburn and are urging owners to educate themselves on the matter.

There are serious incidents being highlighted by the charity where cats have suffered severe skin damage as a result of sunburn, which leaves them at huge risk of contracting cancer. Even recently, the charity has seen three three cats brought to their adoption centres with completely sunburnt ear tips that had turned cancerous, and as a result had to be removed. Though all three cats have now recovered and have new homes, the charity is keen to make cat owners aware of the potential risks.

Cats love the warm sun, but it can be dangerous to them

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. Overexposure can lead to skin cancer.

  • Provide plenty of shade both inside and out. From sheltered plant pots to cardboard boxes, these items offer makeshift sunshades for outdoor-loving moggies.
  • Think about planting shrubs or using cat hides and boxes in the garden. These help your cat hide away from the sun’s potentially harmful rays.
  • If your cat has white fur, try keeping them inside between 10am and 3pm, when the sun is at its hottest. Speak to a vet about suitable sunscreen for cats, to ensure they don’t suffer from sunburn.

We’ve been speaking to Dr Sarah Elliott from Cats Protection about the dangers associated with the sun and our cats, she also has some useful tips and advice to get them, and us through the hot, sunny days.

DR SARAH ELLIOTT – CATS PROTECTION

Keeping your cat cool inside your home is important too. Place fans around the house to keep the air circulating, 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!

Here’s the Cats Protection video to help you look after your cat on those sunny days.

CATS PROTECTION offer all types of advice and information, but of course rely on our support too. If you’d like to find out more about their work, go HERE.

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