Puppies have very delicate pads. The older and larger the pet, the denser and firmer the skin on the pads of the fingers become. However, healthy skin on the pad of a dog’s paw will never be dry, cracked.
To keep the paw pads in dogs healthy and well-groomed, it is enough to follow a few simple rules:
the claws on the feet should always be neatly trimmed. A heavily grown claw can bite into the pad on the paw;
regularly carry out hygienic haircuts between the fingers – the shorter the fur in these places, the less the pads will get dirty and the easier it will be to clean them;
After each walk, wash your dog’s paws under running water and dry them dry. If the pet has long hair on its paws, even a hairdryer is suitable for drying (choose not the most intensive mode);
if the pet’s feet are very dirty, rinsing them with water alone will not be enough. Use a special dog shampoo or conditioner (available at your pet store)
in cold and damp weather, protect pets’ paws with boots or rubberized socks.
Where are the cracks on the legs?
Nature has provided for large enough loads for the paw pads in dogs. But when the loads – walks, pieces of training, team workouts, active games – become too much, the pads cannot cope and they wear off or crack.
Excessive weight of a pet means an increased load on the entire musculoskeletal system, on the legs. Is it possible that it’s time for your ward to limit the number of calories consumed and walk more?
Due to a lack of fluid in the body, the skin ceases to be elastic and is easily injured. Make sure your four-legged friend drinks more water. Keep several bowls of freshwater open to your pet in different parts of the house.
Cracked paw pads in dogs may indicate that the body is deficient in zinc and selenium. It’s time to consult with your veterinarian nutritionist. The correct diet will help fill the lack of nutrients and improve the well-being of the four-legged friend. The condition of the skin on the paws can worsen due to inaccuracies in nutrition and an improperly formulated diet. Remember if someone close to you could treat your pet to something harmful?
Chemical allergies are a common cause of cracked paws in dogs. Try not to use aggressive household chemicals for cleaning. After using chemicals such as cleaning floors, wipe the floor with plain water. The chemical compounds can irritate the skin on dogs’ paws.
No less dangerous are the reagents sprinkled on the streets in winter. Try to drive your pet on the sidewalks as little as possible during the winter. If the pet is miniature, it is quite possible to carry it to the park on your hands. Or give the ward winter shoes.
Exposure to cold and heat also leads to cracked paws in dogs. Don’t go for long walks if it’s freezing outside. Do not walk your four-legged friend on the hot asphalt, go out early in the morning or late in the evening when the pet is not in danger of overheating. In hot weather, dampen your paw pads with cool water.
First aid for a pet
If you notice that your pet has cracks on its legs, first of all, the affected area must be cleaned and treated with an antiseptic. We wash the paws with water and remove the remaining dirt with clean gauze. Do not use cotton wool – there is a risk that the cotton wool particles will clog into the wounds.
Which antiseptic is right? Furacilin solution, chlorhexidine solution. If you are unable to get the antiseptic solution to exactly the areas that need to be treated, take a syringe without a needle and draw the solution into it.
Lubricate the treated paw pads with a special paw wax or medication that your veterinarian has recommended for these situations. It is advisable to bandage the paw and change the bandage regularly. To further protect the paw, place a retainer over the gauze bandage. You can use a baby sock or even an umbrella cover. It is better to fix the bandage or a sock worn over it with a plaster or tape in the area of the narrowest part of the foot. When it’s time to change your dressing, carefully cut the tape or patch with scissors.
Don’t let your four-legged friend rip off the bandage and lick the wound. It is highly undesirable for bacteria from saliva to get into a wound or crack in the paw. If your ward, despite everything, tries to lick the wound, you will have to put a special collar around his neck.
In the first couple of days, when the cracks on the paws are still healed, you can walk the dog, but not for long. As you heal, you can lengthen your walking time. Better to walk your four-legged friend in shoes or rubberized socks.
Cracked paws are a good reason to see your veterinarian. The malaise can be caused by a variety of reasons, the veterinarian will help you find the root of the problem.
If the pads on the paws are not only cracked, but also swollen