Your dog’s feet are subject to a lot of wear. Every time they move around, they’re walking on their paws, exposing their feet to the elements and anything they step in or on. That’s why it is important to take good care of your dog’s paws so they stay healthy and your dog is comfortable. Here are a few steps you can take for better paw health:
Inspect Your Dog’s Paws
Take the time to gently go over your dog’s paws and make sure they don’t have any debris stuck between their toes or the pads of their feet. Look for signs of sores or blistering, as well as small cuts or abrasions. Check to see if the hair on their feet is growing too long and needs to be trimmed. If your dog is constantly licking or nipping at their paws, that may be a sign that something is wrong.
Rinse Their Feet
After spending time outside, it can be a good idea to rinse your dog’s feet off. This is especially true if they have been walking in snow or on ice melt. If you’ve been at the beach or hiking, you don’t want sand, dirt, or pebbles to irritate their feet. Give them a quick rinse in some warm water or spray them gently with the hose. If you recently added fertilizer or pesticides to your lawn, you may want to keep your dog off of the grass for a few days so they don’t track it on their paws and potentially lick them later.
When heading outdoors, think about the terrain you’ll be walking on. Whether it’s rocky hiking trails, hot asphalt, or sidewalks with rock salt, you want to protect your dog’s paws. Consider putting booties on their feet to add a layer of protection from the elements. It may take a little time to get used to them, so have your dog practice wearing them around the house or for short periods of time before you go.
Both the hot and cold temperatures can take a toll on your dog’s feet. There are various balms, waxes, and creams you can use on the pads of their paws if they are dry or cracking. This can make it more comfortable for them to walk around and keep from constantly wanting to lick the area.
Trim Their Nails
You also want to ensure that their nails stay in good shape. If you can hear them clicking on the floor or pavement, it may be a sign that they are too long and need to be trimmed. There are different styles of nail trimmers and grinders that you can get to use at home. Just be sure you read all of the directions and have some gauze or styptic powder on hand in case you accidentally nick the blood vessel that runs through their nails. You want to trim just a little bit at a time.
If you’re unsure about trimming your dog’s nails on your own, or your dog does not like to sit still for you to do so, this is something you can get done by a professional when they are groomed. Lake Wylie Pet Resort is happy to trim your dog’s nails and clean up their paws as part of their pampering. Contact us today to schedule a grooming appointment for your dog! And don’t forget, you can combine this service with doggie daycare or boarding as well.