A 9-week-old puppy was rescued after being severely sunburned when left outside in the scorching heat. The Great Dane mix, named Sheriff, is now in the care of the South Plains SPCA after he was found with severe sunburn damage, due to being left out in the triple-digit heat for several days.
Sheriff’s foster mom, Bayli Bybee, said a couple had seen Sheriff tied up for multiple days on a private residence, with no water or shade. The couple decided to rescue the hurt pupper, and take him to the South Plains SPCA. When he arrived, Bybee said staff could tell the puppy had been through some trauma. He was skinny, and had a severe large wound on his back that was scalped and had that has puss coming out.
There have been no signs of the owner, but fortunately, the staff at South Plains SPCA said he is on the road to recovery. Sheriff is being taken care of by veterinarians and is back to being his happy self again. Once he is fully healed he will be able to be put up for adoption.
Sunburn isn’t often much of a risk for most dogs, but they can sunburn if they are out in the heat often or for a long period of time. Although some are well protected by their fur, some like Sheriff are at risk due to their hairless or thin-furred areas of the body. If this is the case, areas such as their ear tips, bridge of the nose, and tummies can be severely burned.
Unfortunately, just like for people, this can be painful for them, and in severe cases will need medical attention. A way you can tell if a dog is sunburn is looking at their skin, if it turns red, becomes crusty, peels, or blisters, then they probably got sunburnt.
If symptoms have not gotten too bad, there are few things you can do to alleviate a puppy’s sunburn.
- An easy yet effective treatment you can use is spraying cold water from a plant mister to the affected area every half hour. If your puppy hates being sprayed, you can always soak a clean cloth with ice water and apply cold compresses to the affected area.
- Use over the counter sprays like Lanacane and Solarcaine that contain local anesthetics, temporarily numbing the pain of the sunburn. You can safely use these on puppies, but you might want to keep an eye out for them licking the spot to avoid any accidents.
- Use witch hazel (available at most local pharmacies or supermarkets) to help cool down the inflamed skin through evaporation. Witch Hazel is great for puppies since it doesn’t sting like alcohol. Use a cotton ball and dab it to the spot three or four times a day to soothe the burn.
- Use ice as a quick alternative. Hold the cubes against the sunburnt area to numb the pain. A bag of frozen veggies works just as well.
- Apply some Vitamin E to help with the healing. This will soothe the burn and work great to prevent scars from forming. You can apply the vitamin E twice per day.
- Avoid going out in the sun from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm. This is when the sun is at its highest so you might want to keep them in the shade to avoid their paws or their bodies rom burning.