Protect Your Hairless Pet's Sensitive Skin with These Tips

hairless cat

Protect Your Hairless Pet's Sensitive Skin with These Tips

Hairless pets are at increased risk of developing infections, sunburn, dry skin and other skin conditions that can make them very uncomfortable. Fortunately, it's easy to prevent these conditions by following these important tips.

Bathe Your Pet Often

Hairless pets and pets with only one coat of hair, such as greyhounds or chihuahuas, need more frequent baths than furry pets. Baths wash away pollen, dirt, bacteria, debris and pollutants that collect on exposed skin and cause irritation, skin allergies, and bacterial or fungal infections.

Bathing also helps keep natural skin oils under control. Have you ever noticed an oily spot on your bed or sofa after a visit from your fur-free pet? Skin oils are absorbed by hair in most pets but remain on the skin on hairless pets. Although oils help keep skin soft and supple, too much oil can clog skin follicles, triggering an outbreak of acne or blackheads.

Bathing your pet every week or two is a simple way to reduce oil buildup. During the bath, concentrate on removing dirt and oils from the folds that can hide these substances. Keeping folds as clean and dry as possible is the key to preventing bacterial and fungal infections.

If you end up covered with scratches when you bathe your cat, you may be able to reduce the frequency of the baths if you wipe his or skin with a moist washcloth in between bathing sessions.

Although bathing your pet often is a must, frequent trips to the bathtub can dry your pet's skin. Use lukewarm water and opt for shampoos that moisturize and condition the skin. Perfume-free shampoos are less likely to irritate your pet's sensitive skin. Use gentle pressure when washing your pet, as skin irritations due to vigorous scrubbing are more likely to occur in hairless pets.

Apply Sunblock

Although sunburn can occur if any pet spends too much time in the sun, hairless pets and those with only one coat of hair are particularly vulnerable to the effects of the sun. In addition to limiting walks or outdoor play time to the early morning or evening hours, applying sunscreen can help your dog avoid painful burns or skin cancer. Keep in mind that sunscreens and sunblocks that are safe for people aren't necessarily a good choice for your pooch. Choose products specifically intended for dogs, or try spray-on products designed for children. Products that contain zinc oxide should never be used on dogs or cats, as they can trigger severe anemia.

It's best to keep hairless cats indoors, rather than worry about a possible toxic reaction to sunscreens. If you do take your cat outside, ask your veterinarian about safe sunscreen choices.

Lightweight coats that cover your pet's entire body are an excellent alternative to sunscreen, although you'll still want to dab a little sunscreen on noses or other exposed areas, such as tails.

Buy a Winter Coat

Without an insulating layer of hair or fur, your pet will feel the cold more intensely. Warm coats can help decrease the chill whether your pet spends all day indoors or ventures outside for walks. Choose a coat or sweater that completely covers your pet's abdomen and extends to the base of his or her tail. If you plan to walk your dog on snowy or rainy days, buy a waterproof or water repellant coat.

Even hairless pets can become overheated when wearing coats or sweaters. If your dog or cat pulls or scratches at the coat, or starts to pant, take it off for a while. A heated bed or resting spot will help keep your pet warm if he or she doesn't appreciate the benefits of wearing a sweater. In some cases, pets may refuse to wear coats or sweaters due to comfort issues. Make sure that the garment isn't too tight and doesn't inhibit the ability to move freely.

Regular veterinary examinations can help you ensure that your hairless pet's skin remains in good condition year-round. Contact us to schedule your pet's next visit.

Sources:

VetInfo: Skin Care for Hairless Breeds

https://www.vetinfo.com/skin-care-hairless-dog.html

Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University: Caring for the Hairless Dog, 3/15

http://www.tuftsyourdog.com/issues/21_3/features/Caring-for-the-Hairless-Dog-4-1.html

Vet Street: What You Need to Know About Pet Sun Protection This Summer, 6/19/15

http://www.vetstreet.com/our-pet-experts/what-you-need-to-know-about-pet-sun-protection-this-summer

PetMD: Sphynx Cat

https://www.petmd.com/cat/breeds/c_ct_sphynx

Healthy Pets: How Did These Breeds All End Up Naked?, 10/29/16

https://healthypets.mercola.com/sites/healthypets/archive/2016/10/29/hairless-cat-dog-breeds.aspx

Contact Us

Send us an email today!

Hours

Monday:

7:00 AM-11:00 AM

3:00 PM-7:00 PM

Tuesday:

7:00 AM-11:00 AM

3:00 PM-7:00 PM

Wednesday:

7:00 AM-11:00 AM

3:00 PM-7:00 PM

Thursday:

7:00 AM-11:00 AM

3:00 PM-7:00 PM

Friday:

7:00 AM-11:00 AM

3:00 PM-7:00 PM

Saturday:

8:00 AM-11:00 AM

Sunday:

9:00 AM-11:00 AM

4:00 PM-7:00 PM

Locate Us

Find us on a map

    No testimonials found. Please add
  • The Do’s and Don'ts of Pet Summer Safety

    Do you know how to keep your pet safe this summer? ...

    Read More
  • The Most Common Vaccinations for Your Cat and Dog

    Do you know what vaccines your cat or dog needs? ...

    Read More
  • Preparing for Your Kitten’s Developmental Milestones

    Need to hone in on your kitten knowledge? Check out the milestones your new pet will reach during its first year. ...

    Read More
  • What Is Ataxia in Dogs?

    Could balance or gait issues mean your dog has ataxia? ...

    Read More
  • Fish

    If you’re thinking of getting a pet fish, you should know that your veterinarian has a lot of good advice about pet ownership. Fish can be very rewarding as pets, and you just may be surprised about how much fish actually interact with their owners. Here’s more valuable information about choosing ...

    Read More
  • Caring for Senior Cats

    Thanks to advancements in veterinary care, today’s cats can live well into their teen years. It is not uncommon for cats to live to be 18 or even older. However, in order for cats to live a long full life, they need proactive veterinary care to stay healthy. As cats age, they are at greater risk for ...

    Read More
  • Feline Stomatitis: Treatments

    Cats rarely display their pain, but cats with feline stomatitis are often the exception. If your cat appears to have mouth pain, is reluctant to eat, doesn't want to groom, is drooling, and doesn't want you to open its mouth, it may be suffering from this debilitating, degenerative oral condition, and ...

    Read More
  • Feline Leukemia Virus: What You Need to Know

    Feline leukemia (FeLV) is a virus that weakens your cat's immune system. Unfortunately, when the immune system does not function properly, your cat may be more likely to develop other diseases, such as cancer and blood disorders. How Cats Contract Feline Leukemia Cats get feline leukemia from other cats. ...

    Read More
  • Family Cats and Pregnant Women: Take Measures to Prevent Toxoplasmosis Infection

    Nothing must spoil the joys of becoming a new parent. Not even your pets. But family cats with normal, every day habits can pose a risk to expectant women. Women's immune systems can be disturbed by a parasite carried in fecal matter. If you're the primary caretaker of your family's feline friend it ...

    Read More
  • Create an Environment Your Cat Will Love

    The Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery confirms that feline emotional wellbeing, behavior and physical health are a result of how comfortable they are in their environment. Understanding how our cats interact with their environment can help us create a space for owners and cats to mutually thrive ...

    Read More
No form settings found. Please configure it.