Your dog's paws seem to take care of themselves, but as your dog's owner, there is more you can be doing for the health of your dog’s paws. Learning more about what you can be doing to take better care of your dog's paws or spot when an issue is arising are both important parts of owning a dog.
The pads on your dog's paws aren’t as complex as some people may think they are. The pads on a dog's paws are simply a layer of colored skin that covers an area of fatty tissue. This fatty tissue layer provides excellent insulation for your dog’s paws when trekking across both cold and hot surfaces. This does not mean that your dog's paws do not need protection from extreme temperatures.
Some of the benefits that your dog's paw pads provide, aside from insulation from extreme temperatures, include providing traction and aiding in balance and stability when your dog is walking or running. Your dog's paw pads will become rough and sort of calloused over time, just as a human's feet may without the right kind of protection. This is where dog paw pad care comes in and is very important for the health of your dog.
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Dog Paw Care
Proper dog paw pad care starts with inspecting the pads on a regular basis, looking for anything abnormal or infectious. With your regular paw checks, you will also want to keep an eye out for any foreign objects such as weeds or thorns after your dog has spent some time outside.
Contact allergies are often an issue that dogs face. This will manifest in the paw pads of your dog, as they will appear possibly swollen or red after your dog has walked on specific surfaces. Having a gentle dog paw cleaner handy is perfect should something like this occur for the first time. You can clean off your dog’s paws and bring them to your vet for examination.
Keeping up with your dog's nails is an important part of dog paw care. If their nails grow to be too long it can interfere with the way they walk, thus potentially injuring the paw pads. Your dog's nails should not be touching the ground when your dog is standing upright on flat ground. That’s one way that you can easily determine if your beloved canine companion is due to have their nails trimmed.
Another part of good dog paw care is to clean their paws regularly. This prevents foreign objects from sticking around on their paws from outside and causes irritation to the paws. Cleaning your dog's paws often can also help prevent infection from excessive licking if you are sure to dry their paws completely after each wash.
Dog Paw Infection
Excessive licking is often a cause of dog paw infection, either bacterial or yeast sorts of infections. This is due to all of the extra moisture that’s being introduced to your dog's paws because of their licking.
Other infections could have arisen from an environmental factor such as something that your dog's paws encountered outside. If you notice any signs of infection (swelling, redness, discomfort, etc) in your dog’s paws you must bring them to the vet immediately for evaluation and treatment.
Dog Paw Balm
Dog paw balm is a special sort of moisturizer that is made especially for dog paws. It’s made to be nontoxic to dogs, and work to keep the pads of their paws from becoming dry and cracked.
Dog paw balm or moisturizer is especially helpful in extreme weather climates such as snowy wintertime or sizzling hot summer when your dog’s paws are exposed to these temperatures. If you're looking for a good one to try, check out our Organic Dog Paw Balm. This balm is USDA certified, toxin-free, and made with only the highest quality natural ingredients.
You never want to use your own lotion on a dog's paws. This is because this lotion is not made for dogs and can be toxic to them. If you notice that your dog’s paw pads are becoming dry and cracked, you will want to start applying dog paw balm or dog paw moisturizer on a regular basis after talking with their vet about this issue. Keeping dog shoes or booties on your dog’s feet when walking in harsh conditions can help to keep their paw pads safe from the elements.
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Your dog’s paws are everything to them, and you don’t want anything to happen to such an important part of your dog’s lively hood. Good dog paw care is a crucial part of caring for a dog that too many dog owners neglect.
Caring for your dog’s paws means cleaning and grooming them on a regular basis and keeping an eye out for any signs of infection. One final, and incredibly important practice that any dog owner should always consider, is not taking them for a walk at the hottest part of a day when the ground is hot enough to burn their paws. Your dog loves you and trusts you to take care of every part of them.