What Dog Paws Can Tell You?
Everything You Need to Know About Dog Paws
Dog Paw Care Tips & Paw Injuries Treatment
Dog and Puppy Paw Anatomy
Claws, DewClaw, Digital Pads, Metacarpal, Carpal Pad
Why Dog & Puppy Chewing, Licking Paws?
How to Stop Puppy's Paws Chewing
Why does my dog lick his paws all the time?
Homemade DIY Dog Paw Protector Wax
What is a dog's paw made of?
Guess Dog Breed By Paw
Dog Paw Problems: Burns, Blisters and Sores
Dog Nail Structure & Maintainance
Dog vs Wolf Tracks, Paws & Steps
Dog Paws Remedy
Dog & Puppy Paw Problems
How to Measure Dog's Paw
Dog and Puppy Paw Pictures
Best Dog Boots & Socks
Winter-Proof Dog Paws
How to Care for Dog's Torn Paw Pad
How to Treat Cut Dog Paw
Determine Dog's Paw Preference
Dog vs Cat Paws Comparison
Dog Paw Toes, Claws & Pads
Swollen Dog Paws Care
Dog Paw Care Tips
Dog Claws & Pads Function
Dog Paw Types & Variations
Dog Claw & Nail Shapes
Cat-Like Dog Paw
Dog Paw-Shaped Tattoos
Dog Nail Clean
How to Clean Dog's Paw
Dog Nail Cut
Dog Paw Print
Dog Paw Shape & Size
Dog Foot Bath
WATCH DOG & PUPPY VIDEO !!!
Dogs got 10,000 steps a day!
A paw is the soft foot of a mammal,
generally a quadruped, that has claws
Dog paws are literally the underdog
of our canine companions!
WHAT DOG's PAWS CAN TELL YOU?
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Just as we communicate with our dogs through body language and voice tones, they too communicate with us through their body language. A wagging tail often tells you they are happy. A certain stance means they are aggressive. And pawing often means they want to play or want attention.
Have you ever noticed that when puppies want to play, one usually paws the ground or paws at the other animal? Not only are dog paws a means of communication, they are important to a dog's overall health. Here are some important facts you should know about your dog's paws:
1. If you hold your hand on the pavement for 5 seconds and it's too hot it is too hot for your dog's feet. Walk him at a later time or stay on the grass. Conversely, in the winter you want to protectyour dog's paws from salt, ice balls, and cutting his pads on sharp items that may be hidden under the snow or sharp ice. Cold weather can expose your dog's paw pads to drying, cracking, trauma, frostbite and chemical burns. The good news? A dog's pads contain fatty tissue which doesn't freeze as easily as other tissue, which helps to keep their paws a little warmer in the cold. However, consider coating your dog's feet with balm or have him wear dog booties. Also, use a de-icer on your driveway that does not contain chemicals that are toxic to your dog.
2. Overheating Your dog's paws have sweat glands that allow him to perspire, helping him to cool down and his pads from getting too dry. Likewise, if a dog is stressed or nervous, his paws can perspire, just like you do!
3. Walking Dogs toes are similar to our fingers and toes but not quite as flexible. Unlike humans, dogs carry the majority of their weight on their toes versus their heels. The declaw is like the human thumb, while some breeds have them on their front legs and others have them on their back legs.
4. Purpose Some dogs like St. Bernards and Newfoundlands have wide sprawling paws to help them get traction on snow and ice. Water dogs, such as retrievers and Portugese Water Dogs have webbing between their toes to help them swim better in the water. Akitas and Dobermans have what is known as "cat feet" which are small and have high arches, giving them better endurance. Greyhounds and Samoyeds have "hare feet" with a longer middle toe that helps them run faster.
5. Smell Some dog's paws smell like corn chips or popcorn from the bacteria and moisture that grows on their paws. No worry - that's normal.
6. Caring & Massage Objects can become lodged in your dog's paws. Check them regularly for pebbles, foxtails or debris. If you notice that your dog has a minor cut or abrasion on his paw, wash the foot with an antiseptic soap and apply a topical antibiotic cream. Your dog would love a deep paw massage to relax him and give him better circulation. Proper and frequent nail trimming is important. How often depends on the breed.
7. Too much attention! Does your dog spend an inordinate amount of time licking his paws? If your dog licks, chews or picks at his foot a lot, he may have allergies or an obsessive compulsive disorder called lick granuloma. Check with your vet.
DOG AND PUPPY PAW
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1. The pads of your dog's paw are largely made up of fatty tissue, which is why their feet don't get cold when they are prancing through the snow!
2. This padding also protects them while venturing on warmer ground and rugged landscapes.
3. However, those pawsies can get burned and blister on hot surfaces - like hot summer pavement, or can get irritated or burned from rock salt and other chemicals on the ground. Their paws may be durable, but make sure to mind where your dog is stepping! And yes, dog booties are a thing.
4. There are sweat glands on a dog's paw.
5. And they carry the majority of their weight in their toes, as opposed to their heels.
6. You know that little random claw that hangs a few inches above the rest of your dog's foot? That's called a dew claw, and it's thought to be the remnant of what used to be a thumb. Fun fact: Not all dogs have them.
7. Today, dogs can use their dew claws to help keep things like bones and toys in their grasp as they gnaw. Note: don't let your dog chew on a splintered stick like this!
8. And some dogs still actively use their dew claws when navigating choppy, mountainous landscapes.
9. Certain dogs that were bred for cold climates, like St. Bernards and Newfoundlands, have wide, sprawling paws to give them a better grip on snow and ice.
10. And some breeds, like Akitas, Dobermans, and Greyhounds, have "cat feet," which are smaller with higher arches. This enables them to excel with endurance because their paws are so light.
11. Natural-born swimmers have webbed feet, like Newfoundlands and Labrador Retrievers.
12. If your dog starts excessively licking or gnawing at his or her paws, it could be a sign of anxiety. The chewing could lead to open sores and infection, so make sure to get your vet involved!
13. You know that corn chip smell on your dog's feet? That's from bacteria that grows on their paws. But don't worry, - it's totally normal.
14. Of the 319 bones, on average, that comprise a dog's skeleton, a handful of those are dedicated to the paws. Along with bones, dog feet include skin, tendons, ligaments, blood supply and connective tissue.
15. The digital and metacarpal pads work as shock absorbers and help protect the bones and joints in the foot. The carpal pads work like brakes, of sorts, and help the dog navigate slippery or steep slopes.
16. Paw pads have a thick layer of fatty tissue that insulates the inner foot tissues from extreme temperatures, as it doesn't conduct cold as quickly. Think whales and blubber. Meanwhile, as the paw gets cold when it hits the ground, arteries transfer the chilled blood back to the body where it warms up again. Because of these traits, scientists believe that domestic dogs first evolved in colder environments before spreading out into other climates.
17. The inner layer of skin on the paw has sweat glands that convey perspiration to the outer layer of skin, which helps cool a hot dog and keeps the pads from getting too dry. But paws can also exude moisture when a dog gets nervous or experiences stress; dogs get sweaty hands, just like we do!
18. Dogs are digitigrade animals, meaning that their digits - not their heels - take most of their weight when they walk. Because of this, dogs' toe bones are very important.
19. Dog's toes are equivalent to our fingers and toes, although they are unable to wiggle them with the ease that we do.
20. Dewclaws are thought to be vestiges of thumbs. Dogs almost always have dewclaws on the front legs and occasionally on the back. Front dewclaws have bone and muscle in them, but in many breeds, the back dewclaws have little of either. Because of this, dewclaws are often removed to prevent them from getting snagged. However, opinions on the necessity of this procedure are mixed.
21. Although they don't provide much function for traction and digging, dogs do use their dewclaws - for example, they help the dog get a better grip on bones and other things the dog may like to chew on.
22. That said, Great Pyrenees still use their rear dewclaws for stability on rough, uneven terrain and often have double dewclaws on the hind legs. Among show dogs, the Beauceron breed standard is for double rear dewclaws; the Pyrenean shepherd, briard and Spanish mastiff are other breeds that have double rear dewclaws listed for show standards as well.
23. Breeds from cold climes, like St. Bernards and Newfoundlands, have wonderfully large paws with greater surface areas. Their big, floppy paws are no accident, they help them better tread on snow and ice.
24. Newfoundlands have the longest toes of all breeds, and Labrador retrievers come in second. Both breeds also have webbed feet, which helps make them excellent swimmers. Other breeds with webbed feet include the Chesapeake Bay retriever, Portuguese water dog, field Spaniel and German wirehaired pointer.
25. Some breeds have "hare feet," which are elongated with the two middle toes longer than the outer toes. Breeds that enjoy hare feet include some toy breeds, as well as the Samoyed, Bedlington terrier, Skye terrier, borzoi and greyhound. Their paw prints are more slender and elongated.
26. And then there's "Frito feet." If you notice the distinct smell of corn chips emanating from the feet of your dog, resist salivating. Because when you find out that the source of the aroma is due to bacteria and fungi, you may become mightily grossed out. Generally this doesn't lead to complications for the dog.
27. Do you love having your hands massaged? So does your pup! According to the ASPCA, a paw massage will relax your dog and promote better circulation. They recommend rubbing between the pads on the bottom of the paw, and then rubbing between each toe.
28. Although the exact etymology isn't known for sure, the word "paw" appears to come from the Gallo-Roman root form "pauta," which is related to late 14th century Old French "patin," which means clog, as in the type of shoe.
29. Sweat glands within the inner layer of skin on the paw provide perspiration, which helps cool dogs and keep their pads from getting too dry. In reverse, paws also exude moisture when a dog gets anxious, nervous or is under stress. So, just like us, dogs can get "sweaty palms."
30. The pads of most dogs are sensitive enough to distinguish among various types of terrain.
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Dog's paws are pretty neat things. They are functional and quite nice to look at and hold. As well, they can tell you about how your dog is feeling. If you dog is unwell, its paws may be warm and overheated. As well, dogs sweat through glands in their paws. And a female on heat will "drip" scent from her paws to attract males. You may have noticed that dog paws come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Some dogs have wide paws, and others are narrow. Some dogs have rear dew claws, and others do not. Some have hair between their toes, and others have webbed feet. Although there are many kinds of dogs, one thing that is remarkably consistent, regardless of breed or mix, is basic dog paw anatomy.
A dog's paw pads might be the most fascinating features of a dog's feet. Composed of keratin, collagen, and adipose, paw pads serve a number of useful functions. The digital, metacarpal, and metatarsal paw pads act as shock absorbers for the bones and joints that make up the dog's feet and legs, while the cone-shaped carpal pad aids a dog with balance, slowing down, and stopping. Paw pads provide insulation for a dog's feet, and are particularly effective when it is extremely cold outside. The fibrous and fatty tissues that make up paw pads do not freeze as quickly or easily as normal skin. A dog's paws are his hands, feet and shoes all in one. Every type of dog has a slightly different paw structure, although they are all similar anatomically speaking. Dogs are more like horses than people when it comes to walking. They walk up on their toes, rather than the soles of their feet. Their walk may be different from humans, but the bone structure of the canine paw is very much the same.
Being a quadruped, dogs have four feet. The front two limbs are called forelimbs, whereas the other two at the back are called hind limbs. The front limb assembly can be likened to the human arm with shoulder, upper arm, and forearm. Right under the shoulder is the forelimb, which comprises the humerus. Located just under the chest on the back of the forelimb is the elbow. Right after the elbow is the forearm, which comprises the ulna and radius bones.
At the lower extremity lies the foot or the paw. On the other hand, the upper part of the dog's body can be compared to human legs, with the femur (thigh) being connected to the hip at one end and knee at the other, and tibia and fibula bones extending from the knee to the heel.
Dogs are a digitigrade species, which means that they walk on their toes, unlike plantigrade animals that walk on the entire sole of their feet. The terms "forelimbs" and hind limbs' of a dog refer to its front and hind legs. The main function of their limbs is locomotion. Besides locomotion, their paws also help them scratch. In some breeds, the paws also help in digging.
The six pads that are present on a dog's paw act like a protective cushion, absorbing shock, and protecting the bones and joints of the limbs. Dogs don't sweat like humans. Their sweat glands are mostly located in their paws. When it's hot, you might find your dog leave behind a trail of wet footprints. The anatomy of your four-legged chum's paws isn't that different from that of your hands and feet. Each paw pad is surrounded by little toes, or fingers if you prefer. Some call the ones on the front paws fingers and the ones on the back feet toes. Scientifically, they are all phalanges, and so are yours. But technically, the dogs are all toes since they are not attached to working thumbs and are unable to grasp anything.
DOG PAW PARTS
The dog paw has five basic parts:
(A) the claw
(B) digital pads,
(C) metacarpal (on the front paws) and metatarsal (on the rear paws) pad,
(D) dew claw
(E) carpal pad.
The metacarpal, metatarsal, and digital pads function as the load-bearing, shock-absorbing pads. The carpal pad helps with skid and traction on a slope or while stopping. The claws create traction and help a dog dig and tear at prey. The purpose of the dew claw remains a mystery, though it is believed to have been more useful historically in dog breeds. Not all dogs have dew claws, and they can be on the front legs or less commonly, the rear legs.
Claws, which are basically toenails, are located at the end of each toe. Made up of a protein called keratin, a toenail is the horny, beak-shaped covering of the distal phalanx. Nails grow on the ungual process located on the distal phalanx. These help dogs get a good grip on a surface. These also help the dogs scratch the ground. The toenails have a blood supply that feeds the cuticle, but the end of the nails is dead tissue. The claws grow at a rapid rate, which is why these should be clipped. Clipping them at regular intervals can help avoid an injury.
Many dogs have a fifth nail and a pad on the inner side of the pastern, which is the region between the fetlock and the hoof. Referred to as the dewclaw, this claw is considered to be a vestigial structure. In most breeds, dewclaws are present on the inside of the front legs, but some breeds might have dewclaws on their hind legs. Since these are vestigial, some dog owners have them removed surgically when their dog is young. Surgical removal is especially considered in breeds where the dewclaw never comes in contact with the ground.
Located closest to the toenails or claws are four load-bearing digital pads. The support the weight placed on the phalanges. While the thick layer of subcutaneous adipose tissue on the paw pads helps absorb shock and acts as a protective cushion, the surface of the paw pads is protected by conical papillae - extensions of the stratum corneum of the epidermis, which is the outermost layer of the skin.
In severe cases, when the dog has been walking on very hard or rough surfaces, these papillae can wear down. Under such circumstances, the dog is likely to experience pain.
This is the largest paw pad that is located under the digital pads. Like the other paw pads, metacarpal pad provides shock absorption, as well as traction. Traction refers to the friction between the body and the surface. Thicker pads are more effective at absorbing shock. On the other hand, dogs with rough pads are well equipped to take quick turns or sprint, due to improved traction.
The carpal pads are located on the front paws at the back of the foot. Unlike the digital pads and the metacarpal pad that bear the load, and act as shock absorbers when the dog walks or runs, the carpal pad helps the dog maintain balance on a steep surface or a slippery slope.
On a concluding note, the paws perform a vital function in dogs. If you have a pet dog, make sure that the claws are clipped as and when needed, and that they look healthy. If your dog has been licking its paws every now and then, check them for cracks, cuts, abrasions, bleeding, or swelling.
Allergies, dryness, boredom, anxiety, parasitic infections, bacterial infections, injuries, hormonal imbalances, pain, or conditions related to the joints or nails could be contributing factors for licking.
DOG PAW STRUCTURE:
TOES, CLAWS & PADS
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The structure of their paws or the clawed foot could vary, depending on their environment. For instance, Field Spaniels, Portuguese water dogs, or Chesapeake Bay retrievers have webbed feet that allow them to swim. On the other hand, working breeds have thicker toe pads that provide trac
tion.Though both cats and dogs have paws, dogs cannot hold their prey with their paws like cats. They cannot move their toes independently. However, breeds like Keeshonds, Akitas, and Doberman Pinschers have rounder, compact feet, which allows them to easily lift their paws. Some dogs have hare feet, which means that the two toes at the center are longer than the outer toes. Greyhounds and Whippets have hare feet, which makes them more agile.
A dog's paws are the shock absorbers of his foot and pastern (wrist). A dog is not as deft as a cat with his paws. He cannot clean himself or "grab" his prey like a cat can. Rather, a dog uses his paws to dig and scratch. Walking and running are really the best uses for a dog's paws.
Common Paw Characteristics
The paw is characterised by thin, pigmented, keratinised, hairless epidermis covering subcutaneous, collagenous, and adipose tissue, which make up the pads. These pads act as a cushion for the load-bearing limbs of the animal. The paw consists of the large, heart-shaped metacarpal or palmar pad (forelimb) or metatarsal or plantar pad (rear limb), and generally four load-bearing digital pads, although there can be five or six toes in the case of domestic cats and bears, including giant panda. A carpal pad is also found on the forelimb which is used for additional traction when stopping or descending a slope in digitigrade species. Additional dewclaws can also be present. The paw also includes a horn-like, beak shaped claw on each digit. Regardless of the form or outward appearance of dog paws, a dog's fore and hind paws are formed for durability and functionality. Let's explore the wonderful world of dog paws together! Though usually hairless, certain animals do have fur on the soles of their paws. An example is the red panda, whose furry soles help insulate them in their snowy habitat.
The Claw & Foot Pad
Claws are appendages at the extremities of the digits of dogs. The footpad is the tough spongy pads of thick skin beneath each foot. The toenail, or claw, emerges from the end of each toe. The foot also has cushiony pads for each toe and two larger pads farther up the paw.
Dog Claw Types
Whether you call them toes, digits, or phalanges, each toe ends in a claw, and each claw grows out of the bone and shares its blood supply. Not all dog's paws are the same. Some dogs, like the field breeds - keeshonds, akitas, doberman pinschers, have "cat-like" feet that are very compact and don't require as much energy to lift. Other dogs like a Chesapeake Bay retriever, Portugese water dog or field spaniel have webbed paws that help them swim and retrieve water fowl.
Dog Claw Shapes
There are 3 shapes of dog paws: cat feet, hare feet, and webbed feet. Dog paws come in three basic shapes: cat, hare, and webbed - each suited and specialized to particular tasks and terrain. Because there are many mixed-breed dogs, these types are not mutually exclusive. Dogs may have both webbed and hare feet, for instance.
1. Cat feet: - The cat foot is compact, small, and round in shape. It is formed for stability, endurance, and bearing great weight. With that functionality in mind, it's easy to infer that the cat foot is commonly found in most large working dog breeds, such as the Akita, Doberman Pinscher, and Newfoundland.
2. Hare feet: - Where the cat foot is compact, a hare-footed dog has two elongated central toes. It is formed for speed and quick movement out of a resting position, like the feet of hares or rabbits. Dog breeds with hare feet include the Borzoi, Greyhound, and Whippet.
3. Webbed feet: - Dogs with webbed feet tend to be all-terrain dogs, those who are proficient at swimming, and many hunting dog breeds. Among the list of dogs with webbed feet, we find the Labrador Retriever, Portuguese Water Dog, and Weimaraner.
A dog's toenails, or claws, are unlike a human's in that they are very thin and placed toward the inside of each of a dog's four toes. The toenails are important for giving a dog a grip on a slippery surface, scratching at the ground and, sometimes, tearing into his dinner. A dog's toenails should be kept trim - otherwise, they can tear and rip, causing the dog great pain. A dog's nails might stay trim on their own if he exercises regularly on pavement or concrete. A dog who spends most of his time on grass or dirt will need to have his nails trimmed. Many dogs have a fifth nail and pad on the inside of each pastern, called a dewclaw. This claw isn't of use to the dog, although there is speculation about how it might historically have been used by various breeds. To prevent the claw from ripping and hurting the dog, dewclaws are often removed when a puppy is very young. Some, but not all, have dewclaws on their hind legs, and a few breeds are born with double dewclaws on their hind legs.
A dog's toes are not unlike human fingers. The bone structure is the same, but the use is different. A dog walks on his toes, and the bones remain at an almost 90 degree angle when he is standing up. A dog cannot move each toe independently, as a human can move a finger, which limits what a dog can do with his toes. Your mischievous buddy has four fingers on each of his front two paws and four toes on each of his rear paws - 16 in all. Some breeds also have a fifth finger or toe on one, two, three or even all feet. These extras are known as dewclaws - they are kind of like thumbs in humans except useless. Typically a vet will remove the hind dewclaws of certain breeds when they are babies. Those extra "thumbs" in the back can get stuck on things and tear, leading to infections later on down the line.
There are five pads on a dog's foot. One is on each of the four toes, and a larger pad is centered in the "palm" of the foot. The largest paw pad, the metacarpal pad is a heart-shaped pad in the center of a dog's front paws. The metatarsal pad is the largest paw pad on the rear paws. They are named for the bones that they protect and cover. Pads vary in style almost as much paw structure. Pads can be smooth or rough, large or small, thick or thin, depending on the dog and what it was bred for. A dog with a thick, rough pad might have historically been more of a working dog than a dog with a thin, smooth pad. The pad is the dog's shoe. It is his only protection between himself and the ground. Not all animals have pads on their paws. Apart from dogs, cats, tigers, foxes, rabbits, bears, raccoons, weasels and rodents do although they differ greatly in shape and use. The red panda has hair on its pads which is believed to protect the animal from snow and ice. The skin of the footpad is usually heavily pigmented and is the toughest region of canine skin. The surface of the pads is rough in dogs. Dogs' toenails have a blood supply or quick, but the end of the nails are dead tissue. The grow much like human fingernails and must be kept trimmed to avoid trauma.
DOG PAW SHAPES & TYPES
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Different paws for different dogs
Although all dog paws are basically the same, some are shaped slightly differently than others. Many breed standards specify "cat feet," which are the result of short third digital bones. These compact feet require less energy to lift, allowing the dog to conserve energy and increase his endurance in the field.
Akita, Doberman Pinscher, Giant Schnauzer, Kuvasz, Newfoundland, Airedale Terrier, Bull Terrier, Keeshond, Finnish Spitz, and Old English Sheepdog are among the breeds with catlike, compact feet. Hare feet are elongated with the two center toes longer than the side toes. Breeds with hare feet include several of the toy breeds, Samoyed, Bedlington Terrier, Skye Terrier, Borzoi, and Greyhound. Breeds that work in water tend to have webbed feet. Newfoundland, Chesapeake Bay Retriever, Portuguese Water Dog, Field Spaniel, and German Wirehaired Pointer are among the breeds with webbed feet.
Some dogs have lots of hair on their feet and between their toes. Exhibitors usually trim this hair for a neat appearance in the show ring, and pet owners may consider trimming to avoid caking of ice in the hair during the winter months. The dog's paws and the pasterns work together to absorb the shock of jumping and running and to provide flexibility of movement. However, these body parts are only as good as the dog's total structure, for they bear the burden of poor shoulders and hindquarters as the animal moves. Structural faults such as straight or loose shoulders, straight stifles, loose hips, and lack of balance between the front and rear structure, can all cause gait abnormalities that in turn lead to damage to pasterns and feet.
Purebred dog breeders try to correct poor structure when they breed. Good breeders do not use animals with poor structure in there breeding programs, and they compensate for minor structural faults when choosing a mate for a dog or bitch. Mixed breed dogs are just as susceptible to poor lower limb structure, but there is little chance that such problems can be corrected because mixed breed dogs tend to come from accidental breedings. Although minor structural problems seldom interfere with enjoyment of a companion dog, understanding the value of tight feet and limber pasterns helps owners understand their pets better. Owners who wish to do some obedience work, hiking, jogging, agility, hunting, or other potentially strenuous activity with their pets should take careful note of limb structure before putting the dog through training.
For more information on paws, pasterns, and structure, dog owners can read:
(All books are published by Howell Book House)
The Dog in Action,by McDowell Lyon
Peak Performance: Coaching the Canine Athlete, by M. Christine Zink DVM
The New Dogsteps, by Rachel Page Elliott
GUESS DOG PAW BY BREED
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PLAY "GUESS DOG BREED
BY THE PAW" GAME
HOW TO DETERMINE
DOG'S PAW PREFERENCE
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Karen B. London
A few years ago, dog trainers and behaviorists renewed their love affair with tail-wagging, constantly checking to see whether dogs were wagging their tails higher to the right or to the left. Our awkward attempts at positioning ourselves to observe this behavior were surely entertaining to others. Why were we so eager for the information conveyed by these asymmetrical tail wags? Because they indicate dogs' differential use of the left and right hemispheres of their brains and are, therefore, a window into their emotions.
The study of asymmetrical tail wagging that prompted our collective interest found that differences depended on what inspired the wags in the first place. Dogs wagged higher to the right when greeting their guardians. The same right-side bias was seen in response to unfamiliar people, although the wags were lower overall. In response to cats, there was little wagging, but it was still higher to the right. In the tests, the only stimulus to which dogs' wags had a left-side bias was an unfamiliar, confident dog.
Left or Right?
Asymmetrical tail wags reflect the way the two sides of the brain process information and affect the body. The right hemisphere controls the left side of the body and the left hemisphere controls the right side. When dogs wag their tails to the right, they are engaging the muscles on the right side of their body more actively than those on their left. This demonstrates greater involvement of the left hemisphere of the brain. The left hemisphere is activated when the brain is processing positive experiences associated with emotions such as happiness, affection and excitement, as well as anything familiar. The right hemisphere takes precedence when processing sadness, fear, other negative emotions and novel things. This link between emotions and sides of the brain came to light in studies of humans. Ahern and Schwartz (1979) found that people who were asked questions that elicited either positive or negative emotions responded in accordance with this principle. They looked to their right, showing left brain hemisphere involvement in response to questions that elicited positive emotions, but looked to their left, showing right brain hemisphere involvement, in response to questions that evoked negative emotions.
Individuals canine or human, who favor the left paw or hand more often use the right hemisphere of their brain, while right-pawed and right-handed individuals have a more active left-brain hemisphere. Studies have shown differences between right-pawed and left-pawed dogs. They have also revealed that dogs who are ambilateral, who don't have a paw preference are different in predictable ways from dogs who strongly prefer one paw over the other. Lateralization research, an active area of study, informs our understanding of emotions and behavior. Though dogs and people are common study subjects, similar patterns have been found in fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and primates and other mammals. We now know that the significance of brain lateralization, handedness and paw preference extends far beyond matters of scissors and can-openers people and learning to shake dogs. There are strong links between paw preference, the strength of that preference, and the behavior and emotional life of dogs.
In humans, we identify hand preference based on which hand a person uses to eat, write and so forth or by seeing who keeps their arms tucked in tight when eating at a small round table. It's the lefties, because they are used to colliding with the righties next to them if they don't act to prevent it. In dogs, most determinations are based on the "Kong test," in which dogs are observed extracting food from a Kong. Every time the dog uses a paw to stabilize the Kong, the observer records which paw was used. If the dog uses both paws simultaneously, that is also recorded. From these data, researchers determine a dog's paw preference as well as the strength of that preference. There are approximately equal numbers of left-pawed, right-pawed and ambilateral dogs, which is different than the preponderance of righties in humans. Our dogs' paw preferences provide insight beyond knowing which paw is used to steady a Kong. Batt reported that being right-pawed was associated with lower arousal and calmer responses to novel stimuli and strangers. Schneider found that dogs who were left-pawed exhibited more stranger-directed aggression than dogs who were either right-pawed or ambilateral. Many potential guide dogs fail their training - usually for behavioral reasons and Tomkins documented higher success rates of right-pawed than left-pawed dogs in training programs.
Strength of Lateralization
In addition to the effects of paw preference on emotions and behavior, the strength of those preferences also has an effect. Branson and Rogers demonstrated that dogs without a paw preference were more reactive to loud noises than dogs with a paw preference. Batt showed that dogs with stronger paw preferences were bolder and less cautious than dogs with weaker paw preferences. They were more confident, less prone to arousal and anxiety, quicker to relax or become playful in new environments, and exhibited calmer responses to novel stimuli and strangers. It turns out that we humans are similar to our best friends in this regard: People with weak hand preferences are more likely to suffer high anxiety levels and are more susceptible to both PTSD and psychosis than those with a strong handedness. Just as being right-pawed predicted guide-dog training success, dogs with a strong lateralization - either left or right and a low rate of using both paws in the Kong test fared better in these programs. The authors hypothesize that this may be because strongly lateralized and right-pawed dogs are less likely to experience high reactivity and distress responses, which are detrimental to success as a guide dog.
In studies of sensory processes and lateralization, dogs were simultaneously presented with identical stimuli on both their left and right sides while eating from a bowl. The direction in which they turned their heads indicated which side of the brain was involved in processing and responding to the stimulus, revealing the dogs' emotional reaction to it. Dogs consistently turned to the right involving the emotionally positive left-brain hemisphere in response to the social cues of canine isolation or disturbance calls and canine play vocalizations, but tended to turn left - showing the activation of the emotionally negative right-brain hemisphere, when they heard thunder. Dogs also turned left in response to images of cats and snakes but not to images of dogs. With repeated presentations, there was a change toward right-turning behavior, indicating that the left side of the brain and its associated positive emotions were involved. This suggests that novelty may be a factor in fear and other intense negative emotions that tend to be processed by the right side of the brain. To understand the role of lateralization in processing olfactory stimuli, it is essential to know that each side of the brain processes the information received on the same side: the right nostril goes to the right hemisphere, the left nostril goes to the left hemisphere. Dogs started to sniff novel but non-aversive stimuli - food, lemon, dog secretions, with their right nostril and then shifted with repetition to using their left nostril, showing a change from negative to positive emotions. When presented with adrenaline and sweat from their vets, dogs demonstrated a consistent bias toward the right nostril, suggesting that their emotions started, and remained, negative in response to these odors.
Our understanding of lateralization has potential to improve our dogs' quality of life, our relationships with them and even our success in training them. We may be able to reduce stress by approaching dogs from their right side in exams, during greetings or in any stressful situations. We can quickly see how dogs react emotionally to a variety of stimuli by attending to which way they turn, and we can observe the asymmetry in their tail wags to ascertain their emotional state. It's possible that we can even minimize the development of noise phobias by placing dogs whose lateralization suggests vulnerability in quieter homes. We can minimize the substantial investment of time and money spent on training guide dogs by training only those dogs who have the greatest chance of completing the program.
DOG PAW FUNCTION
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Dogs perspire through their pads. Pads provide both traction and shock absorption, thick pads absorb more shock and increase endurance, while rough pads allow for better traction for quick turns and effective sprinting. Dogs have scent glands on the bottoms of their feet that allow them leave a mark that can be seen and sensed by other animals. A dog's claws are fairly strong. They help the dog to run and maneuver, to dig and they do offer some protection. As would be expected, they help to provide stability to the feet.
For working dogs and those who spend a lot of time outdoor or in rough terrain, the paw pads become calloused and rough to the touch. Frequent usage gives a dog's paws added traction and stability, both of which contribute to the fact that you rarely see dogs slip or lose their footing. As they mature, dog paw pads also become highly sensitive and adaptable to the ground beneath their feet.
This helps to explain why dogs seem so uncomfortable or tentative when they are made to wear dog boots. Finally, essential to the complete dog paw experience are a dog's claws, which are both similar to and different than human fingernails. Though they are tougher, thicker, and more durable than your fingernails, a dog's claws grow just as quickly. Dogs who are highly active outdoors, whether walking, running, or digging - tend to keep their claw length under control through constant use. In either event, domestic dogs need some manicuring help from their owners or their veterinarians.
Unlike your fingernails, a dog's claws grow out of her bones and share their blood supply. If your dog has white claws or nails, this blood supply should be at least partly visible through the nail, making it easier to trim them without bleeding or pain. Claw maintenance is a bit more difficult for dogs with black or opaque nails. To be on the safe side, dog owners can either clip only the pointed end, or leave it to the professional care of a professional groomer or veterinarian.
DOG PAW DISFUNCTION:
DECEASE & INJURY
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Digital hyperkeratosis - is increased thickness of the keratinized epidermis of footpads in dogs and rarely in cats. May be in response to trauma or associated with distemper. Often, the hard, cracked pads appear to have "keratin feathers" around their edges. A veterinarian can diagnose this ailment by analyzing a section of pad tissue.
Pemphigus - is an auto-immune disease of the skin in which the immune system goes haywire and mistakes skin cells for enemy invaders. In the most common type of pemphigus, pus-filled sores, which eventually break and form crusts develop on the foot pads, bridge of the nose and ears.
Zinc-responsive dermatosis - is a breed-related form of dermatosis that occurs in Siberian huskies and several other Arctic breeds. It may also occur in puppies of any breed if their diet is deficient in zinc or absorption is impaired by excessive supplementation of calcium. This causes scaling and crusting, especially over pressure points and footpads. Breeds reported to have this disease are Ggreat Danes, Dobermans, beagles, German shepherds, and pPoodles.
Onychomycosis - is fungal disease of the claws in which the claws become misshapen, discolored, thickened and friable.
Onychogryphosis - is abnormal hypertrophy and curving of the claws.
HOW TO TREAT
CUT DOG PAW GUIDE
Don't you just hate it when your dog cuts or tears his pad? In an ideal world, they would just rest and let it heal. But, come on, we all know that's not going to happen. They continue to want to run and play, no matter how hard you try to stop them, and of course the wound continually reopens when they do. Even the pressure and weight from just walking can reopen a wound on the pad. So an alternative way to help with this, is surely a welcome relief from trying to keep your little wriggle-bum still. Trying to stop them from running is exhausting, let alone trying to keep a clean, dry, bandage on. So let's show you how to accelerate the healing process for your dog's paw. First, use your own judgement, if it looks like a deep cut or bad tear then take your dog to your vets. Most vets do not stitch small cuts as stitches don't generally hold well on the pads, but your dog may need a course of antibiotics. If it's just a regular cut, tear or crack then you can follow the steps below:
Examine your dog's paw. If there's blood but you can't see an obvious wound then check your dogs' nails to see if he has ripped a nail. A broken nail, where the quick is cut, would also cause a lot of bleeding.
Wash the wound with warm water and have a close look to see if there is any debris inside. If you see anything then douse your dogs paw in a bowl of warm water to dislodge any debris. You can also use tweezers to remove anything that you can see.
Clean the area with a diluted antiseptic, Betadine solution works well if diluted to the color of weak tea.
Apply a small amount of antiseptic cream to the affected area. You can purchase an antiseptic cream from most pet supply stores or you can use Neosporin.
Wrap the pad in soft gauze to provide a cushioning for the pad.
Next apply a pressure bandage, such as vet wrap, to the paw up to and including the wrist joint, leaving the front toes out.
Ensure that the bandage isn't too tight that it cuts off the circulation. You should be able to insert two fingers in-between the bandage and leg. If your dog licks or chews at the bandage, you can get some Anti-Lick Strips to wrap around the bandage or spray with Bitter Apple. If you are unsure how to bandage your dogs' paw, then take your dog to the vets. Usually a nurse's visit is sufficient to bandage a minor cut.
Tips That Stop Pads Re-Opening
Also good for Cracked Pads!
After three days you can cut the bandage off but now comes the difficult part. Keeping the wound from opening up every time your dog walks or runs! Luckily, there are a few things you can do to help. Use a dog boot for when your dog goes out for a walk. Be sure to take this off when you come in as the air needs to get to the wound to heal. You can also try an "invisible boot" by using Musher's Secret on the affected paw. If the wound keeps re-opening, You can apply a good sealant product. Try either Mushers Secret, EMT Gel, Bag Balm, or DermaGel. They also aid in the healing process by providing protection against infection. If your dog is likely to lick, then try the EMT Spray. If it starts bleeding again, and it probably will - you can simply stop the bleeding by applying pressure with some gauze. Don't re-bandage as the air needs to get to wound to heal. Once the bleeding has stopped, take the gauze away and reapply the sealant.
Dog Paw Pad Injury:
Care Tips Guide
Signs of a Dog Paw Injury
The main thing to look for is bleeding or limping. If you look at your dog's paw and think to yourself, "If this were me, I'd go to the doctor," then it's time to visit veterinarians. If your dog's paw won't stop bleeding, it's time to come in. Dogs have arteries in their paw pads. Excessive or ongoing bleeding can be a sign that an artery has been hit. If you don't take action and your dog doesn't seem to be getting better, it's time to visit your vet! The best thing you can do for a dog paw injury is to bandage the wound. If you have first aid supplies available, we suggest covering the wound with a gauze pad or a Telfa pad and then wrapping it with an Ace bandage. You also can wrap the wound with a towel.
Signs of Infection in a Dog Paw Injury
Infections can be serious and require attention. Here are signs to watch for:
Your dog's paw pads are puffy and red.
Your dog may not want to walk on his or her paw.
Your dog may be running a little fever and yes, your dog may feel warmer to you.
You may notice your dog is panting more than usual. Excessive panting can be related to pain. When you go to look at your dog's paw, your pup is not as cooperative as usual. If Rover normally lets you touch his paw and he pulls away, something hurts!
After you visit the vet, there's usually very little you have to do at home. Monitor your dog for any unusual behaviors that may indicate an issue. If there's any chance your dog will try to remove the bandage, your pup will need to wear a head cone.
Burns and blisters
Your dog's pads can easily burn and blister as a result of walking on a hot pavement or through hot sand. If you look at your dog's pad there will either be a loose flap of the pad itself or the flap will have detached, leaving a red ulcerated patch. The best thing you can do is to apply anti-bacterial wash and cover the paw with a bandage until the pad has healed. If your dog has a loose flap of pad you will need to wait for this to come off, which it will do on its own or you can ask your vet to trim it off.
Dry, Cracked Pads
Your dog's pads are naturally rough. They have to be so he has traction when he needs to turn quickly, sprint off and stop quickly. If the pads become cracked they are prone to collect dust and debris, which can cause further injury to the pad. Pads can be moisturized using a special footpad cream. Try to avoid using human hand moisturizer as this tends to soften the pads too much and makes them prone to injury.
WHY DOG & PUPPY
LICK & CHEWING THE PAWS
REASONS & REMEDIES !!!
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Are the Feet Red, Swollen, or Crusty/Flaky?
This could be indicative of a local irritant, such as deicer or inflammation/infection from bacterial, fungal and/or parasitic sources. Even if the inciting cause is no longer present, constant licking and chewing can become a self-propagating cycle of continued trauma to the skin and continued inflammation - a condition also known as pyotraumatic dermatitis.
Are There Any
Irregular Lumps or Bumps?
Cysts or other growths or small abscesses can occur, causing discomfort and licking.
Dry skin can be as uncomfortable for a dog as it is for a human. The dry air that comes with winter can cause your dog's skin to dry out. If your dog's diet does not contain enough fatty acids that help moisturize and protect his skin, that could be a cause of dryness. When your dog's skin is dry, it becomes itchy or irritated, and your dog may bite at his paws because of the discomfort. Unfortunately, when your dog is biting and licking at his skin, this can cause the dry skin to become chapped, making him even more uncomfortable.
Something Is Stuck
If your four-legged buddy is outside a lot without his doggie shoes, chances are pretty good he may be chewing at his paw because something got stuck between his toes during the last outing. If it is winter time with ice and snow on the ground, perhaps a small chunk of frozen stuff or salt got stuck. In fall, spring or summer months, a small stone or twig might be lodged where the movement of walking just did not force it out. Your pup may just be using his teeth to remove something that shouldn't be there.
Yeast organisms (fungi) are normally found on your dog's paws, but an underlying condition can cause them to multiply and cause problems. Licking excessively is a tell-tale sign of a yeast infection, Levitzke says, along with red nail beds, a reaction to salivary enzymes. Other symptoms include itching, redness and discharge. Yeast infections are often secondary to allergy, the doctors say, with the most likely culprit atopic dermatitis. However, environmental or food allergies also could be to blame. The vast majority of dog paw problems are skin problems that are worse at the feet. Your vet can test the area to determine if yeast is the culprit and treat the infection with topical products, antifungal wipes and shampoos. If these treatments don't do the trick, the underlying allergy may need to be addressed with antihistamines, steroids or anti-itch medications, Levitzke says. If a food allergy is suspected, elimination diets, where ingredients are taken out and then added back in can help identify the trigger. Ringworm, a fungus found in soil or brought in from other animals, plants or from dog parks, also can infect your dog's feet, and is not actually a worm or a ring. It can look like a swollen toe or an abscess. Your vet will examine a sample of hair or skin under a microscope or send it to a lab for diagnosis. You can treat ringworm and prevent its spread with medicated bath products and a thorough cleaning of your dog's environment. Ringworm is contagious and may spread to humans or other pets.
Like yeast, bacterial organisms also are normally found on your dog's paws, but a secondary health condition can cause them to multiply excessively. Symptoms include licking/biting, redness, swelling, pain/itching and abscess. Your vet can take a sample tissue from the affected area and evaluate it to determine if bacteria are the problem and, if so, prescribe either oral or topical antibiotics and antibacterial shampoos and soaks.
Nails that are not trimmed properly or naturally worn down by walking outside can become painful ingrown toenails. Your vet can treat them with antibiotics and pain medication, but severely ingrown nails might have to be surgically resected.
A torn nail is common in the emergency room, Levitzke says, often after a tussle with another dog or a paw snags on carpeting or other material. When the entire nail has been pulled off, take your dog to the vet for immediate treatment to stop bleeding and manage pain. Antibiotics also might be prescribed. If the nail has been incompletely removed, the treatment would be to remove the remaining bit.
Hot asphalt can hurt your dog's paws, and burns need to be treated immediately. Bandaging usually is required as a protective barrier on the skin or paw pad affected. Antibiotics and pain medication are also typically indicated.
Think of frostbite as a cold burn. As with burns from hot asphalt or pavement, these injuries need immediate veterinary attention. Treatment for frostbite includes bandaging, pain control and anti-infection measures. Avoid this injury by limiting your dog's exposure to the elements.
Prevention is the best way to avoid these injuries. Put booties on your dog's feet and use dog-safe salt. If your dog does get salt on his paws, wipe it off with a towel/paper towelsIt tends to burn particularly when the paw pads with salt on them touch the snow, so try to avoid walking through salt and then snow, or wipe off feet between getting salt on them and walking through the snow.
One of the more common places ticks hiding is between the toes. It is best to have a veterinary medical professional remove the tick. Never take a lit or recently lit match to the tick. If you can't get to the vet, use tweezers to grip the tick from the head and gently pull it out. The head must become detached along with the body for successful removal. Pet supply stores also sell special tick-removal tools.
Mites such as Demodex canis can present a frustrating problem and require a deep skin scrape or a biopsy to diagnose. These mites can cause Demodicosis in which the mites that normally live in your dog's hair follicles multiply and cause swelling, hair loss and scaling on your dog's paws. Your vet will examine hair or skin samples under a microscope to accurately diagnose the condition, which is treated with medication, sometimes for several months.
Dogs with lots of hair on their feet can catch gum, sticky asphalt, burrs and thorns in crevices, which can be hard to find and painful to remove. Prevent these problems by having the hair clipped by your groomer. Ingrown hairs manifest in short-haired dogs as tiny pimples and can lead to furunculosis, an infection deep in the hair follicle that can abscess and cause tissue damage.
Fleas biting the tender skin between your dog's toes can cause itching similar to what humans experience with mosquito bites. According to the licking triggers section of the website Dog Paw Licking, pesticides and other lawn and garden products applied in areas where your four-legged friend is hanging out with you could be causing the skin of his feet to have an allergic reaction. Inside the house, floor cleaning products aimed at removing dirt and grime also have enzymatic agents that can irritate the skin of a dog's paws. Regularly washing your dog's feet to remove irritants might help reduce allergic reactions he wants to handle by chewing at his paws.
Wound or Injury
Again, this goes back to the dog's natural instinct to use his mouth to cure anything that ails him. Dogs lick their wounds, and the same applies to an injury on a paw. Perhaps a minor cut or abrasion went unnoticed by his human companion and Fido has resorted to using his own saliva as a cure. Trouble is, a dog's mouth and teeth are chock-full of bacteria that aren't healthy for the broken skin usually caused by paw chewing. According to Mar Vista Veterinary Clinic, the wound resulting from excessive licking or gnawing is called a lick granuloma. It is a raised ulcerated area that is basically raw exposed skin. When a wound gets to this point, antibacterial treatment administered by a veterinarian is necessary.
Just Bored or Stressed
According to VetInfo, some veterinarians theorize that some dogs develop the habit of licking or gnawing on their paws to keep themselves occupied or to keep their minds off stressful or painful situations. It's like the human equivalent to chewing your nails. Maybe it's a self-soothing method. Maybe your dog is just bored and perhaps if you give him a new toy, he'll gnaw on that instead.
According to VetInfo, the paw licking and gnawing easily becomes a vicious circle that a dog cannot seem to escape. Addiction to the behavior easily develops, as the release of stress-reducing endorphins that the dog has experienced in the past provides a sort of mental reward to the dog. Finding a replacement for that "high" is necessary. Options include toys or food treats. Having the dog wear socks can reduce his direct tactile contact with what his feet touch, thus reducing awareness of his feet. The only struggle with that, according to Dog Paw Licking, is that socks come off quickly. Also, some socks are colored with dyes that are just as irritating. Mar Vista Veterinary Clinic offers some recommendations for medications such as doggie Prozac.
HOW TO STOP YOUR DOG
FROM LICKING & CHEWING PAWS
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A daily paw cleansing can remove allergens from your dog's paws. Fill a small container with a few inches of lukewarm water and add enough povidone-iodine to make it look like fresh-brewed iced tea. Dip each paw in the solution for two to five minutes. Wipe his feet dry with an old towel and he is all done. Do this once a day.
If you suspect your dog is licking his feet out of boredom, try distracting him. Give him a toy, treat or lots of attention whenever he starts licking. Make sure he's getting plenty of exercise. Interactive toys for times when he's alone serve as a good distraction; toys filled with treats that require a lot of work for him to reach the treat are ideal.
Sometimes a good ointment is just what your dog needs, especially if the pads on his paws are dry and cracked or there's a cut or abrasion. A triple-antibiotic ointment is a good choice. Put bandaging over the ointment and distract your dog so he won't be tempted to rip off the bandage.
Food allergies can show up as skin irritation, and low-quality diets can leave your buddy with dry, itchy skin, which can also cause licking around his paws. It can be hard to pinpoint a food allergy and usually requires help from a vet. If you suspect food might be giving your dog problems, transition him to a high-quality diet that doesn't contain common allergens such as wheat, corn, soy or chicken.
Fleas, ticks and mites can make your dog itch like crazy. Usually he will itch everywhere, and not just on his feet, but an infestation can cause excessive foot licking. Treat your dog with a flea bath, dip, powder or a spot-on solution. Be sure and treat his bedding and living area as well, so he doesn't get re-infested after the treatment.
SWOLLEN DOG PAWS CARE
Swollen paws in the dog, or more commonly, one swollen paw, is a relatively common injury, as most dogs do a lot of moving around on different types of surfaces in the course of their average day! In some cases, the cause will be clear, such as a thorn embedded in the foot, but in other cases, it is not so easy to work out! Swollen paws in the dog may be due to a minor problem or something more sinister, and so it is worth learning more about how to check the paws, narrow down potential problems and find out what to do next. We will cover these factors in more detail within this article.
Common Causes of Swollen Dog Paws
Sore paws from too much exertion on hard surfaces.
Burns to the paws from walking on a hot road.
Damage such as a broken toe.
Stings from wasps or bees.
Tumours between the toes.
Injuries such as a foreign body being lodged in the paw.
How many paws are swollen?
First things first, getting to the root of the problem can be simplified a lot by doing some deductions based on how many paws are affected. One swollen paw is likely to mean a foreign body in the paw, injury to one paw, or possibly, that their paw has been stung by a wasp or a bee. Check the claws too, as a damaged nail can also lead to swelling, and it is also important to search between the toes for any signs of a tumour or other problem. If both of the front paws are swollen but the rear paws appear ok, your dog may be suffering from an allergy that is causing them to lick, chew and otherwise bother the paws. If your dog has sore spots or other itchy areas on their body, this is the most likely culprit. If all four paws are affected, check out the pads of the paws to see if they may have become burnt from walking on a hot road, or abraded and sore from too much exercise on hard surfaces. Take special note if your dog is also coughing, which may seem to be unrelated, but in combination with swollen paws may be an indication of a heart problem.
How to Deal with Swollen Dog Paws?
Working out what has caused the swelling is the key to resolving the issue, and will tell you whether or not it is something minor that you can manage at home, or if your dog will need to visit the vet. Foreign bodies that are lodged in the paw but that have not broken the skin, or that have not caused a deep injury, may be removable at home. Then, washing and cleaning the paw and keeping an eye out for infection will usually be sufficient. If your dog's paws are swollen due to overexertion, allowing your dog to relax and recover fully, and avoiding high impact or long walks on hard ground in future should help. You may also want to consider soaking your dog's feet in an Epsom salt solution too. If your dog is suffering from allergies, you will need to speak to your vet to get help to narrow down the culprit, and work out how to proceed. If your dog's paws smell cheesy or yeasty, they may have developed a fungal infection, and again, your vet can prescribe a treatment. If your dog's paws are sore due to burns from walking on a hot surface, you may be able to cool them down and wait for your dog to recover at home by soaking their feet. However, if the paws are abraded, bright red or weeping, you will need to go to the vet. Don't ignore sore paws if you cannot find out the cause; there may be something serious amiss, and you should always contact your vet for advice if you are at all uncertain.
DOG CHEWING HABITS...
Foot licking can simply be a habit-formed behavior that occurs when the dog is relaxing, stressed, or bored. Some dogs even chew at their nails with this type of behavior. Depending on what your veterinarian finds on examination, treatment to stop this behavior will be aimed at the underlying cause. For cases of allergy or infection, there are medications and/or dietary changes that can be made to assist with the problem. In situations where pain is the underlying cause, that should be dealt with directly to alleviate the licking. Growths or abscesses are usually treated surgically. It is also important to be vigilant about environmental hazards to feet, such as deicing compounds in the winter and hot pavement tar in the summer. For difficult cases, a visit to a veterinary dermatologist or university veterinary teaching hospital may be in order. Behavioral modification to stop paw licking and chewing, like any behavioral modification, takes time, patience and consistency. There are several topical products that can be used to discourage this sort of behavior. Physical restraint, such as an e-collar, is also sometimes used for medical conditions to allow the foot or paw to heal and thus alleviate the urge to lick. Distraction is also a good technique: playing games, offering other toys and incentives to keep your dog occupied, coupled with positive reinforcement, will help break the cycle. If additional behavior help is needed, consider working with a specialist in veterinary behavior.
USING DOG SOCKS
TO STOP PAW CHEWING
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If your pooch constantly chews her paws, chances are that they're itchy and irritated. However, allowing her to chew on them will just irritate them more, causing them to itch more and prompting her to continue chomping. It's a vicious cycle, but it's one you can break with some ointment and a pair of dog socks! If your dog is recovering from surgery or sutures, or if he compulsively chews or licks his paws or legs, dog socks are a great alternative to an Elizabethan collar. They'll prevent paw chewing and associated hair loss and skin damage while giving your dog's skin time to heal. Here's how:
Purchase dog socks at your local pet store so that your dog can try them on before you buy them. Ideally, the socks will cover the area your dog chews or licks, plus an additional several inches. They should be tight enough to stay up, but loose enough to pull on easily.
Calm your dog down by petting him and talking to him. If he is small enough, hold him in your lap. If not, get down on the floor with him. Allow him to see and smell the socks before you put them on. If your veterinarian has prescribed an anti-itch cream or other medication for your dog's paws or legs, put the medication on before the socks.
Scrunch each sock by placing your thumbs on either side of the opening and your fingers at the base of the sock. Spread it out with your thumbs until the opening is wide enough to slip your dog's foot through.
Slide the sock over your dog's toenails and paw, being very careful not to snag a toenail with the fabric. Straighten the sock as you pull it up. If you snag a toenail and cause your dog any pain, wait awhile before trying again. If you rush it, your dog may associate the socks with discomfort.
Allow your dog to adjust to the feeling of the first sock before putting on the others. Stay with him to make sure he does not pull or shake the sock loose.
Repeat the process with the other three socks.
Remove your dog's socks when he is fully supervised, goes outside or bathes. The socks should remain on at all other times to prevent compulsive chewing. In the meantime, work with a professional dog behaviorist or seek help from your veterinarian to eliminate or redirect your dog's compulsive behavior.
Socks that are too tight can impair circulation and cause pain. You should be able to easily slip a couple of fingers between the sock and your dog's leg.
Avoid using rubber or waterproof socks, as these will become wet with sweat and worsen your dog's symptoms.
Itchiness is usually the sign of a larger issue, such as allergies to food or environmental substances or another skin condition. Also, not all paw chewing is the result of itchiness, for example, it coule be a foreign object such as a burr or splinter could be lodged in his paw, or even canine anxiety. Before following these steps or in addition to them, take your pup to vet to rule out possible alternate/underlying causes.
HOW TO MEASURE
DOG BOOTS, SOCKS & SHOES
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Fit Comes First
Finding dog boots that stay on can be a real challenge. The key is finding a bootie that is flexible enough to feel comfortable, but still allows durability and support for, say, a hard-hitting hike through rocky terrain. Look for boots that are snug around the ankle, but have a bit of space in the foot. You know the rule of thumb for human shoes? The same rule applies here!
They should have some wiggle room, but still offer support without pinching. Some companies measure shoe size by weight, while others base their sizing on the length from the heel of the pad to the tip of the toenail. It will take a couple tries for your dog to feel comfortable wearing booties, but if the shoe fits, they should love the relief.
If a dog has furry feet, boots can prevent ice and snow from sticking between their toes and causing sores. Dog boots can also help provide traction on snow and ice. Selecting dog boots that fit well is extremely important so that the boots stay on your dog's paws comfortably.
Incorrectly sized boots will not be comfortable or perform well. If the boot is too loose, it may keep falling off or it will make it hard for your dog to walk. Just like boots for people, if the boots are too tight they can put pressure on the feet and cause them to go numb. Not only are numb toes uncomfortable, but they also get cold easier and could lead to frostbite.
So how do you make sure your dog's boots will be comfortable and stay on?
Follow These 6 Steps
to Ensure the Proper Fit!
1. Before starting, make sure your dog's nails are trimmed to get an accurate measurement. The tools you will need to measure your dog's feet are pencil or pen, blank paper, and a tape measure.
2. Place the paper on a firm, flat surface so your dog's paw will fully contact the paper. Have your dog stand on the paper with their full weight so their toes completely spread out. Sometimes it helps to gently hold the opposite paw in your hand so all the dog's weight is on the paw you are measuring.
3. Use the pen or pencil to draw lines at the top, bottom and sides of your dog's paw. Clearly mark each side at widest point and don't forget to include the toenails.
4. Measure the lines to find the length and width of your dog's paw.
5. Compare these measurements to the size chart for the particular boot you will be purchasing. The sizes for the same measurements will vary a little from one brand to another. And sometimes different models within a brand will vary in size because they are made out of different materials.
6. Once you have the dog boots, make sure that you selected the right size by having your dog try them on. Put the boots on while your dog is standing in order to ensure they are securely fastened with the dog's weight fully on the paws.
Make sure to include the dewclaws in the shoe if applicable - the claw that appears higher up on the dog's paw, as not to provide discomfort. Similar to how you would size your own shoe, gently squeeze the front of the boot to make sure your dog's toes are near front but not pressing into the front of the boot. For small dogs, you may want to consider putting the dog on a counter or table top so you can get a better view when putting on the shoes.
HOW TO CLEAN/WASH
DOG & PUPPY's PAWS
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James Rhys Clarke
While your dog's paws are padded to insulate against cold, city sidewalks may have salt in the winter, which should be removed after a walk. Remember, dogs constantly step in dirt, which may contain trace amounts of feces, urine, and chemicals from lawn care and pesticides, or salt and snow removal. To cut down on the bacteria that causes this smell, keep the hair between the toes shortly groomed to lessen the surface area that the bacteria can linger on and to promote good air circulation.
Caring for your dog's paws is often neglected by dog owners, but paws are actually very important and must be cared for on a regular basis. It may seem like a silly task for some, but it's a responsibility that you should take seriously since paws do get damaged, dry, irritated and so forth. The best paw wash for dogs can help to keep Fido's feet free of dirt, debris and prevent issues. Many of you know I often stress the importance of removing pesticides, herbicides, ragweed, grasses, pollens, molds, dust mites and other pollutants from your dog's feet on a regular basis. Place a cookie sheet outside your door with sudsy water and just enough iodine to turn it a color resembling iced tea. Have your pet walk into it and stand for 30 seconds. Iodine will disinfect the paws of all chemical residues and treat a yeast infection in its early stages. Dry thoroughly.
READ ABOUT THE BEST
DOG PAW WASH REMEDIES
This is because dogs are naked. They don't wear clothes, or shoes and socks. They don't shower every day. In other words, their bodies collect a lot of allergens and chemicals in the environment, and it builds up quickly. Your dog's feet can gather a pretty heavy toxin load in addition to allergens, and this can become extremely irritating to his paws. Common sense seems to dictate we need to remove all that stuff, yet in veterinary medicine, it's rare to hear anyone recommend it to pet owners. I certainly didn't learn about foot soaks in vet school. But I learned after becoming a vet that 50 percent of foot licking and chewing can be alleviated by mechanically removing allergens and other irritants collected on a dog's paws. "Mechanically removing" - simply means rinsing them off.
WATCH DOG & PUPPY VIDEO
HOW TO CLEAN DOG's PAW
Believe it or not, a washcloth isn't nearly as efficient at cleaning your dog's feet as dunking them is. You don't need to do the soak in a big tub like the one I'm about to use. For instance, if your dog is a big guy, you can use a bucket and soak one foot at a time. If you have a little dog, you can use your kitchen or bathroom sink. So it doesn't matter where you do it or whether you rinse all four paws at once or one paw at a time. What's important is to soak those paws at the end of any day when your pet has been in contact with allergens, lawn chemicals, or anything in the environment with the potential to irritate her feet. Keep in mind the only places dogs sweat from are their noses and the pads of their feet. So those damp little pads can collect a really heavy load of irritants. A soak at the end of the day will reduce the chemical burden on your dog, as well as the potential for irritation.
Treating Smelly Dog Paws
The following recipes and remedies will be helpful and should not be washed off after treatment:
Add 1-2 tablespoons of baking soda to one gallon of water to remove allergens that irritate the paws. Let your dog stand in the mixture for about two minutes or so.
Add 1 cup of Epsom salt to your dog's bath and in just 10 minutes your dog's natural pH balance will be back to normal.
Soaking your dog's paws in 1 cup of organic unpasteurized apple cider vinegar, the juice of one lemon, and 20 drops of peppermint oil for 10 minutes will alleviate any irritation. Lemon is an anti-fungal, antibacterial, and antiviral ingredient. Substitute hydrogen peroxide at 1 cup to a gallon of water instead of the peppermint oil if you don't have any on hand.
Make a paw soak with: 1 c. organic apple cider vinegar, the juice of a lemon & 20 drops of peppermint oil.
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HOW TO WASH YOUR DOG's PAW
DOG PAW CARE & MAINTAINANCE
COMMON DOG PAW PROBLEMS:
HEALTH TIPS & INFO
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Dog paws require regular maintenance!
A dog's paws serve a multitude of basic and specialized functions. In addition to walking, digging, self-grooming, and play, they also contain scent and sweat glands, which are useful for territorial marking and temperature control. Proper care of a dog's paws and claws is essential to her long-term health and well-being. Regular washing and massaging from an early age can prevent issues such as frito feet, a condition caused by an accumulation of sweat, bacteria, and yeast that gets trapped in foot hair or between a dog's toes over time.
Keep an eye on your canine pal's feet. If your dog has those cute tufts of fur growing between his toes, keep these trimmed. Otherwise, they can get matted, which is very uncomfortable for Man's Best Friend. Watch for ticks, pebbles, or seeds, as these can sometimes get lodged between Fido's furry toes. You will also want to check your dog's paws for bumps & cuts, swelling and other signs of injury. Contact your vet immediately if you notice anything amiss: paw infections are nothing to play with! Work a paw massage into Fido's foot inspections to make this more pleasant for him.
If your dog is your running buddy, literally, as in RUNNING or a working dog, those paw pads get even more wear and tear. Plus, ice and snow and the chemicals used to melt it are brutal for suede boots and dog paws. Summer's heat is also rough - I refuse to say RUFF on your dog's pads. You may have first noticed your dog's pads needed some attention when they slapped you with a paw or jumped up on your legs. OUCH! It felt like someone had rubbed coarse sandpaper on you. Time for PAW BUTTER!
DOG PAW CARE:
THE ESSENTIAL TIPS
Pamper With Pedicures: Your dog's nails should just about touch the ground when she walks. If her nails are clicking or getting snagged on the floor, it's time for a pedicure. Ask your veterinarian or a groomer for advice about what types of nail trimmers are best for your dog and how to use them properly.
Clean In Between Foreign objects can become lodged in your dog's pads. Check regularly between toes for foxtails, pebbles, small bits of broken glass and other debris. These pesky items can usually be removed with a pair of tweezers.
Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize A dog's pads can become cracked and dry. Ask your veterinarian for a good pad moisturizer and use as directed. Avoid human hand moisturizer, as this can soften the pads and lead to injury.
Deep Paw Massage Similar to giving a human hand massage, a paw massage will relax your dog and promote better circulation. Start by rubbing between the pads on the bottom of the paw, and then rub between each toe. Your dog will be forever grateful for the extra TLC!
Slow and Steady If you are about to begin a new exercise program with your dog, start off slow. Paws may become sensitive, chaffed or cracked, particularly when starting your dog out on hikes and runs.
Apply First Aid It's not unusual for dogs to suffer cuts or other wounds from accidentally stepping on glass, debris or other objects. Wounds that are smaller than a half inch in diameter can be cleaned with an antibacterial wash and covered with a dog bootie. For deeper paw cuts, see the vet for treatment.
Summertime Sores Imagine stepping barefoot onto hot pavement. Ouch! It is important to remember your dog's paws feel heat extremes, too. To prevent burns and blisters, avoid walking your dog on hot pavement or sand. Signs include blisters, loose flaps of skin and red, ulcerated patches. For minor burns, apply antibacterial wash and cover the paw with a dog bootie. For serious burns, visit your vet immediately.
Wintertime Blues Winter is hard on everyone's skin, even your dog's! Bitter cold can cause chapping and cracking. Rock salt and chemical ice melts can cause sores, infection and blistering. Toxic chemicals can also be ingested by your dog when he licks his paws. After outdoor walks, wash your dog's paws in warm water to rinse away salt and chemicals. We call it froze toes when our dogs run outside during our Minnesota winter, then stop and hold a foot up within minutes. Ice and snow crystals can freeze inside their paw pads and darn, that hurts! The chemicals and salts used to keep the sidewalks snow-free can be harsh on your dog's paws. After outdoor walks, wash your dog's paws in warm water to rinse away salt and chemicals. You may consider a pair of booties for your cold-weather friend, if your dog will tolerate them. You may wish to apply Vaseline, a great salt barrier, to the foot pads before each walk or make sure your dog wears doggie booties.
Practice Prevention! To reduce the risk of injury, keep your home and yard clear of pointy bits and pieces. Be conscious to avoid hazards such as broken glass and other debris when walking your dog. And keep this simple tip in mind if you wouldn't like to walk on it barefoot, neither will your dog!
SUMMER DOG PAW CARE:
THE ESSENTIAL TIPS
Press your forearm to the sidewalk - sand, asphalt, etc.), if it is too hot for you, it is probably too hot for your dog's paws, especially if they are inside most of the time. Do Necessary Maintenance! Once a day, you should check your dog's paws to make sure there isn't any debris, such as pebbles, sand or burrs, in between the toes. Also, keep an eye out to see if your dog's nails need a trim, which should be done about once a week. Your veterinarian's office can show you how to do this yourself or even do it for you if you are not comfortable. Whenever you cut your pup's nails, you should also trim paw hair to avoid matting in between the toes. Simply trim it even with the pads. Four-footed friends need special attention in summer. When the heat is on, make sure your dog's paws stay cool and clean and that you prevent injury to their soft pads. Your dog's increased exposure to the outdoors does call for more vigilance on your part, particularly when it comes to those four feet. The condition of your dog's paws is key to wellbeing. These tips can help ensure a happy and healthy summer for your dog:
Don't let him sweat it.
Did you know that when dogs become overheated, they sweat from their paws? While panting is the first clue that he needs to cool off, a trail of doggy footprints should also move you to action. Get your dog out of the sun and into an air-conditioned space, if possible. Then moisten a washcloth and wipe down his face and paws.
Walk when it's cooler.
Asphalt pavement and sandy beaches can get terribly hot when the temperature soars. With prolonged exposure to these surfaces, your dog's paws could get scorched. To avoid that, take your dog to a pet-friendly park and walk him on the grass. The best times in summer for long walks and exercise are in the early morning and just before sunset, when it's still light outside.
Keep nails trimmed.
If you hear clickety-click every time your dog walks, his nails need to be shortened. Ask your veterinarian to show you how to trim them and to recommend the best tool for the job. If hair pokes out between the pads, that needs to be trimmed as well.
Keep your eyes peeled for broken glass and other sharp objects that could break the skin on your dog's paws. According to the ASPCA - Wounds that are smaller than a half inch in diameter can be cleaned with an antibacterial wash and wrapped with a light bandage. For deeper paw cuts, see the vet for treatment.
Watch out for limping.
Sometimes dogs in the countryside pick up a prickly burr that lodges itself in between paw pads. Tweezers may remove it. If your dog's gait is off, inspect the paws for foreign objects and injuries indicated by swelling, redness, and discharges.
Check for cracks.
Walking on hot, hard ground can dry your dog's paws, which may lead to cracking. Examine his paw pads to make sure they are soft. If not, moisturize them by rubbing in a little bit of petroleum jelly once a day.
Dogs lick their paws for different reasons: For some, it relieves stress. For others, especially ones who take up the habit in summer, allergies may be the culprit. Contact with grass, weeds and pollen is a common source of irritation. And once your dog comes inside, tracking the substance into the house can prolong his discomfort. One way to combat that is to moisten a washcloth and wipe down paws after the walk.
DOG NAIL CARE
GUIDE & TIPS
Does your pup make a clicking noise when he runs across the kitchen to you? If so, Fido probably needs a pawdicure. Overgrown nails are very uncomfortable for Man's Best Friend, and can make it harder for him to walk or gain traction, especially on slippery surfaces. Over time, they can even affect your dog's gait, and can contribute to painful bone/joint problems, like arthritis. If you have a hard time clipping your canine friend's claws, try some desensitization training. Start by teaching Fido to Gimme Paw. Then, rub the clippers over his nails, and give him a treat. It may also help to get clippers with sensors. Of course, you can also just call us to schedule a quick nail trim appointment for your pooch!
DOG PAW PADS CARE TIPS
Fido's paw pads are very sensitive, and can easily get injured. In summer, our four-legged buddies can get painful blisters by running around on hot or hard surfaces, especially right after going swimming. Winter also poses some specific problems: snow, salt, sand, and chemical de-icing agents can all cause burns and abrasions. Use paw balm or wax on your pup's feet, and try to keep him on soft surfaces. We also recommend wiping your dog's feet daily with a damp cloth, and choosing pet-safe de-icing products for winter.
WATCH OUT FOR
SNOW & ICE !!!
You should also use caution in the winter, when there is snow, ice or salt on the ground. Be sure to clean off ice melts and salt after a walk outdoors with a soft, damp cloth. In extreme weather, you can protect paws with booties. Choose a type your dog tolerates and that stay on her feet well, and use them every day throughout the cold months.
GRASS SEEDS IN PAWS
Other common dog paw problems include grass seeds being lodged in your dogs' paws. These frequently cause an infection if not removed. If your dog has been in long grass, check your dogs' paws for grass seeds. While you are at it, you should also check their ears as grass seeds get in there too. Barley grass seeds are particularly bothersome to dogs. Barley grass is usually golden in color, you will notice the grass standing out in a park or field, as in the picture here. Barley grass seeds can get into dogs' paws. Keeping the fur short on dogs' paws will help to keep grass seeds out as well as to allow you to see clearly. Just trim the fur between the toes as part of your grooming routine.
DOG PAW TORN PAD CARE:
DETAILED GUIDE & TIPS
Your dog's paw pads - the portions of the paws that make contact with the ground, provide shock absorption as the dog runs and walks. Pads insulate the foot bottoms from extremely cold weather and protect inner tissues in the dog's paws. Pad injuries can bleed extensively due to the large amount of blood vessels they contain. Signs of a torn pad include limping or holding the foot up, excessive licking, discoloration and bleeding. Your initial task is to examine the paw pad and determine whether you need to temporarily disinfect and bandage his foot before taking him to the vet.
Hold the torn paw pad in a running stream of lukewarm water for two minutes. This will wash away bacteria from the item that creates the tear. It will also wash blood away so you can examine his paw. If the bleeding does not stop in two minutes or it is bleeding profusely, call your vet immediately for emergency care.
Extract any foreign material in the paw pad with tweezers. If the bleeding resumes after the extraction, hold his paw in running water again.
Determine the size of the tear. According to the ASPCA - If a paw pad injury is larger than a half-inch in diameter, see the vet for treatment. If the tear is smaller than a half-inch and the bleeding stops, proceed with home care. You may still want to take your dog to the vet for a professional inspection.
Pour povidone iodine over the tear to disinfect the wound. Squeeze a generous amount of antibiotic ointment onto a sterile cotton swab. Swab the affected area and about a half-inch surrounding the area with the ointment.
Center a sterile nonstick gauze pad over the torn paw pad. Place one finger on top of your dog's paw. Place the loose end of veterinarian wrap on the gauge pad and lightly wrap around your dog's paw and your finger until the gauze pad has four layers of wrapping covering it. Remove your finger from the bandaging.
Cut the excess veterinarian wrap with a pair of angled scissors and smooth the end down onto the bandaging.
Change the dressing every two to three days to keep the paw pad clean and prevent infection. Dogs sweat through their paw pads, which makes it hard to keep bandaging dry. If you didn't take the dog in for an exam, call your vet, explain the situation and ask for a schedule to change his bandages.
While it is not an actual term, it is an actual phenomenon. When you take your dog swimming in a pool, lake, or ocean, be aware that there are certain consequences. Dogs are not really used to the beach's sand between their toes, which acts like sandpaper and may irritate the skin in between. Chemicals from pools or the salt from the sea are just as irritating as the salt pellets used in snow removal. Prolonged exposure to water makes paws react the same way as our shriveled up skin does after a long bath. Water softens your dog's pads, which may encourage drying out, tearing, and opening them up to infection. Be sure to thoroughly wash your dog'ss feet in clean water at the scene, or as soon as possible thereafter.
DOG PAWS SUMMER CARE
HOT PAVEMENT CARE
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Many owners like taking their dogs on walks to enjoy the warm summer weather, but they may forget one important detail: hot pavement will burn a dog's paws. It can be tempting to take your dog everywhere you go, but it can cause serious harm to your dog if you are not careful. Remember that if asphalt and cement can get hot enough to cook an egg during the summer, or if it feels way too hot for you to leave your hands comfortably on the ground for at least 10 seconds, it can result in nasty burns on your dog's paw pads. This is especially true if you have a new puppy with tender young paws.
How to prevent dog's paws from burning?
It's much easier with cats, as they tend to avoid surfaces that can be uncomfortable for their feet. Dog paw burns shoesMost dogs, on the other hand, would follow you to the ends of the earth if you asked them to. Be mindful of hot surfaces like sidewalks, metal boat docks or sand. If your pet does have to spend time on hot surfaces, limit her time spent there and allow her to rest in the grass or on clean towels. While you might think that carrying your fur-child across the parking lot, pushing them in a pet stroller or buying pet shoes sounds silly, these are also great ways to protect those paws. When in doubt, stand barefoot on the concrete just outside your front door for 30 seconds. If it's too hot for you, it's too hot for your pets.
How to Care for Burned Paws
1. Walk Your Dog When It's Cool
This is an obvious tip, but one that folks sometimes don't consider enough. Spring, summer, and even fall are great seasons to take your dog out on sunny walks, but be mindful of the temperature and when and where you walk him. The best time to walk your dog is in the morning or late evening, when the pavement is cool. Avoid walking your dog in the afternoon or early evening when it's hot outside, because the pavement will be its hottest.
2. Toughen Your Dog's Paws
During cool times of the day, you should walk your dog on pavement, because the hard and rough surfaces will toughen the pads on your dog's paws. This will help to make her pads tougher, providing a natural resistance to damage from hot surfaces.
3. Stay On The Grass When It's Hot
If you end up taking your dog out during the warmer times of the day, be sure to stay on the grass and stick to shady areas. Stay away from sidewalks or any paved areas to avoid burning. A shady park can be a great place to take your dog on a warm afternoon.
4. Moisturize Your Dog's Paws
You want your dog to have tough paws, but you don't want them to get too dry or they will be more susceptible to cracking, peeling, and cuts. These dry signs in your dog's paws can also make them more susceptible to burns from hot pavement. Consider moisturizing your dog's pads daily, especially in hot weather, to help prevent injuries and burns. Paw Nectar is a highly-rated, 100 percent natural, treatment for dry, cracked paws. Use it regularly. It will not hurt your pup if he licks it. Paw Nectar can also be used on a dog's dry or cracking nose.
5. Use Paw Wax
Paw wax can easily be spread on your dog's paw pads prior to walking to protect them from rough or hot surfaces. Paw wax is designed to protect your dog's feet from several potentially harmful surfaces and chemicals, like road salts. A favorite is Musher's Secret Paw Wax, which dog owners apply for many surface solutions - ice, snow, heat, sand, rocks, gravel...
6. Try Dog Shoes
Dog shoes are a good way protect your dog's paws from all kinds of harmful surfaces and potential injuries if your dog will wear them. Also, they must fit her properly or they might pose a danger. Be aware that not all dogs can get used to dog shoes, and some might have a hard time walking in them. Make sure you get the right size and purchase shoes with rubber or neoprene soles, as they are most protective against damaging surfaces. There will definitely be an adjustment period for your dog trying to walk with dog shoes on, but if you can get your dog used to using them, they could be a solution for hot and cold weather hazards. You might want to read this article on how to encourage your dog to wear shoes. Boots or any other paw or foot covering should be kept on as short a period of time as possible. Dogs "perspire" through their mouths and their paws. When dogs' paws are free, their perspiration allows their body heat to adjust.
7. Consider All-Terrain Boots
All-terrain boots are similar to other dog boots, but they are more rugged and, generally, more expensive. But if you have an active, athletic dog and she hikes, runs, loves the snow, sand, water, and well - hot pavement - the cost of the boots are well worth it. Canine Equipment's Ultimate Trail Dog Boots are made of recycled rubber and have snug wrap-around closures. They are available in five sizes, but the front pair and back pair are differently sized so they match the true proportional size of your dog's feet! Remember, take them off whenever you can, so your dog can adjust her body temperature by having her feet exposed to the air. And don't keep foot coverings on inside the house if you can help it.
8. Grab Some Socks For Your Dog's Paws
Dog socks are intended for indoors and are a last resort solution if you need to take your dog onto the hot pavement. Make sure the socks have rubber or neoprene soles or your dog will burn his feet. Sock soles are much thinner than shoe soles, so make your sock-walks very short. Don't use disposable shoes. They are made of rubber or silicone and fit tightly so there is no room for your dog's feet to breathe. Additionally, they do not provide any barrier to heat or cold. The temperature beneath them goes right through to your dog's feet. And don't use any product that sticks to your dog's foot. You don't want anything to rip the skin on your her foot pads.
9. Get Dog Shoe Suspenders
I didn't believe them either, but there is a solution designed for dogs who won't wear their shoes and socks. It's called Canine Footwear Suspenders Snuggy Boots. Actually they are adjustable suspenders and they don't come with snuggy boots, or any boots, but if your dog really needs to wear boots to protect him from the hot pavement or any other surface, these suspenders may be worth a try.
10. Check And Clean Your Dog's Paws Frequently
Be sure to check your dog's paw pads daily for any signs of damage and check between his paw pads for any stones or other debris - pull them out gently. You can wipe his paws off with a room temperature damp cloth before moisturizing the pads of his feet with Paw Nectar. If you do happen to see a problem, or if your dog is acting strangely on his feet, be sure to take him to the vet.
DOG PAWS WINTER CARE
TIPS & INFORMATION
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Winter can be brutal on our dog's paw pads. Exposed to the elements and toxic chemicals, the paw pads are at risk for drying, cracking, trauma, frostbite and chemical burns. Luckily, there are some tips and products out there that can help keep your dog's paws happy and healthy this winter. Many protective balms are available to help protect your dog's paws, and even some human products can do the trick. Do your research. Once you find the balm that you like, take these steps.
PREPARE THE PAWS
Before using the balm, make sure the paw is ready. Good grooming is essential for healthy winter feet. If your dog has long hair use a clipper - beard trimmer with the shortest plastic guard equipped works well, to keep the hair between the paw pads short so that it is even with the pad. Trim the hair around the paws especially if they have a lot of feathering to make sure none of the hair comes into contact with the ground. This will help prevent ice balls from forming between and around the paw pads which can be painful and result in trauma. It also makes it easier to apply the balm to the pads. Keeping the nails trimmed is important year-round but even more so in the winter because long nails force the paw to splay out and make it more likely that snow and ice will accumulate between the paw pads. Apply a thin even layer of balm just before going out for a wintery walk. After the walk wipe your dog's paws with a warm washcloth to remove snow, ice and ice melt. Then apply another layer of balm to soothe any irritation and to keep them from drying out. Bag Balm can be found in most drug stores and pet stores. If you can't find Bag Balm then Vaseline is an acceptable alternative.
Another good option to protect your dog's paws is dog boots. These boots are made by various manufacturers and can be easily found online and in pet stores. They consist of a sock like boot with a Velcro strap to help keep them in place. Some have soles which provide the additional benefit of adding traction. These boots protect the paw by helping them stay dry and preventing exposure to salt and de-icers. Be sure to check that the strap is not too tight; the boot should be snug so that it doesn't slip off but not so tight that it constricts the paw. Dogs tend to not to like wearing the boots at first so acclimate them to wearing them by putting them on your dog for short periods of time in the house. Praise them and gradually increasing the length of time as they get used to them.
SALT & DE-ICERS:
Be aware that salt and most de-icers can be toxic to our canine friends. Try to keep your dog away from roads and sidewalks that have been heavily treated with salt and chemical de-icers. There are pet friendly de-icers available for use on your own sidewalks and driveway and you should encourage your neighbors to do the same. Immediately after a walk, wash your dog's paws with warm water as described earlier to help prevent them from ingesting any salt or chemicals that may be on their paws. While outdoors, do not let your dog eat slush or drink from puddles near heavily treated roads and sidewalks. Dogs are susceptible to frostbite and hypothermia just as people are so use common sense as to how long your walks can be. Keep them short and watch for signs of hypothermia such as shivering, anxiety and moving slowly. Winter can be tough on our dog's feet but good grooming and protecting the paws by using a balm or booties will go a long way to keeping your dog's feet healthy.
HOMEMADE DOG PAW
HEALTHY WAX & BALM
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Your dog's paws and nose can become dry and cracked when exposed to the elements. Apply this wax salve to the bottom of your dog's paw pads or on her nose to soothe the dryness. The oils will be absorbed into the pad to create a layer of protection.
2 tbsp. natural beeswax
2 tbsp. olive or coconut oil
5 drops vitamin E (for extra protection)
Melt the beeswax in a double boiler on the stove or, if using a microwave, in a shallow pan atop a water bath. Add oil when fully melted. Stir. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.
Snow, ice and salt can be very painful when it becomes lodged between paw pads. Instead of stopping frequently to wipe off my dog's feet, We have discovered a safe way to protect paws from cold weather elements. I just apply a coating of homemade dog paw wax before venturing outdoors for a stroll in the snow. This allows us to take longer walks without dealing with the hassle of cold, sensitive or icy paws. Best of all, the natural ingredients make it safe to use on dog's that suffer from allergies. This natural recipe for dry, cracked dog paws is simple to make and takes virtually no time at all. The hardest part is gathering all of the ingredients together.
While you may not initially have all the items in your kitchen, purchasing them and making your own is more economical than buying a commercial brand of dog paw wax. Pet owners whose dogs frequently lick at their paws won't have to worry about them consuming this all-natural remedy. My beagle will eat almost anything, so making my own non-toxic balm seemed like the smartest option. In addition to preventing damaged or chapped dog paws, this moisturizing salve also helps to soften a dog's paw pads. Although some people dress their dog in cute boots or socks to keep paws warm, my beagle is definitely not a fashionista. Dressing him in any type of clothing is like trying to bathe a cat. This easy-to-use canine paw wax works great to protect paws from snow, ice and chemicals, allowing both me and my pet to enjoy a safe, stress-free walk without the doggie boots.
DOG PAW WAX RECIPE
Paw Wax Ingredients
4 tsp. beeswax
4 tbsp. coconut oil
2 tbsp. shea butter
2 oz. avocado or almond oil
1/2 tsp. vitamin E
20 drops of peppermint essential oil (optional)
Use your imagination with paw wax tins, jars or molds to hold your creation. I like to keep some at home in a mason jar for neighborhood walks, and I also have a convenient tin which is ideal for carrying along to the park or on a winter hiking getaway. You can even find decorative holiday tins to fill with homemade dog paw wax for all your canine-loving friends. Use this recipe to fill several 1-oz. tins or pour it all in a larger container for everyday use.
In a small pan, melt the beeswax, oils and shea butter over a low heat. Stir mixture frequently to blend oils. When thoroughly melted, transfer liquid into chosen container. After wax has hardened, seal tin or jar and decorate if desired. You want to be sure the mixture is fully cooled and dry before sealing. Forget to do this and you may end up with a funky residue underneath your container lid. Though it is optional, I prefer to add peppermint oil to my recipe. It has a nice, fresh smell and is also an anti-inflammatory and analgesic agent. You can always select a different oil for your dog paw balm, just check to be sure that it's safe for canines. To optimize the benefits of your homemade dog paw wax, be sure to keep the hair between your dog's toes trimmed. Long hair between the pads tends to collect ice and other harmful objects more readily. I can always tell when my beagle's fur is getting too long because he will lick between his paw pads. For those who don't have the time or inclination to make their own paw protection wax, Musher's dog paw wax is the next best alternative. This is the brand I used before I began making my own. Although it does cost more, it is non-allergenic and doesn't contain any harmful ingredients. Whatever method you choose, your dog will tolerate the cold better and appreciate the extra pampering.
CHECK THE GREAT RECIPE
HOW TO MAKE PAW BALM
by WWW.MYBROWNNEWFIES.COM !!!
WORKING DOG PAW WAX
MUSHER's SECRET WAX
PAW FOR DOGS
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If your dog will not wear the dog boots under any circumstances - there is a paw wax that can be rubbed onto their paws to protect them. Musher's Secret is a dense, barrier wax that forms a breathable bond with your dog's paws. Developed in Canada for use with sledding dogs, it provides tenacious protection even in the most extreme conditions.
Safe and Natural
Made from a blend of several food-grade waxes, then refined according to our our own special formulations, Musher's Secret is the safe, non-toxic way to protect your dog's paws. The semi-permeable shield is absorbed into the paws, allowing perspiration to escape through the toes.
Made from 100% natural waxes and easy to apply!
Spread a light coating of Musher's Secret on the pads and rub in. Mushers will absorb in minutes (rub a little on your hands, when it is absorbed you will know it is absorbed into the pads as well). We use an old rug near the door for application purposes. In very harsh cold or snowy conditions be sure to rub up in between the pads to prevent snowballing. For year round use, 1-2 times a weeks is sufficient. During extreme weather additional applications may be necessary. Frequency may depend on length of your walk and weather conditions.
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DOG vs HUMAN ANATOMY:
PAWS, NAILS & HANDS
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There are an enormous amount of traits that humans and animals share - this is because of the evolutionary process of inheriting characteristics and traits from successive generations that all lead back to a common ancestor. Humans and animals share the same basic muscles and bones, but they appear at different sizes, proportion and ratios based on the animal. Bipeds are animals that traverse their environment on two legs, like us humans. Quadrupeds are animals that use four limbs to travel around like dogs, horses, cows, cats, and many other four limbed mammals. In terms of locomotion, evolution has developed two very common forms of movement using the same muscles and bones. As shown below, humans and dogs share the same groups of bones and muscles even though they have completely different forms of locomotion. In diagram A, a human man is shown next to a dog, the bones are highlighted on each animal and they are shown to be the same bone but in different proportions and ratios. What many people would think to be a dog's upper leg is actually its lower leg, and what many people think is it slower leg is actually the equivalent of a human palm.
Using the same two animals as a comparison, human hands and dog paws when seen side by side share the exact same bones in different places. As seen in diagram B the thumb of the human is a vestigial part of the dog's foot, meaning a mutation from a previous ancestor that still appears in subsequent generations but is no longer used for the same purpose. In the comparison shown below in diagram C, the same bones shared between humans, large cats, and horses are pointed out, it is clear that many mammals have very similar skeletal structures regardless of their form of locomotion. Like the common misconception about dogs, the upper leg of most quadrupeds is hidden behind layers of muscle and fat, this is why colour coded Skelton diagrams are the most digestible forms of delivering information about the similarities and differences between human and animal anatomy.
Another very interesting area of anatomy that shares similarities and differences across multiple different species types is the bones of the hand. The human hand can be seen in many other animals such as bats, birds whales, horses, cats and other mammals. The diagram below shows how the same bones are reconfigured in other species to suit different purpose, including completely different types of locomotion including deep sea diving and swimming and even flight. It is interesting to see how the bones that we would see as the fingers can be fused together to create bird wings, or they can splay out to create bat wings. In the example of the horse, the "foot" of the horse that the hoof appears on is actually just one "finger" bone.
DOG & WOLF IDENTIFICATION:
TRACKS, PAWS & STEPS
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A few subtle differences exist between wolf tracks and dog tracks, but they're similar enough that they can be difficult to distinguish. In fact, Western Wildlife Outreach, a wildlife conservation organization, says it is impossible to identify tracks as belonging to wolves or dogs with 100 percent certainty. To help distinguish between these closely related canines, investigate the size of the tracks, the spacing of the tracks and the path they take. Geography and other factors may help you distinguish between tracks made by the two animals.
Both wolves and dogs produce four-toed, oval-shaped tracks. While both are largely similar in gross appearance, one difference is sometimes visible: The middle toes of domestic dogs are slightly larger than the lateral toes are, whereas the four front toes of wolves are the same size. Dogs often drag their toenails when walking, which produces slightly messier tracks than the often-pristine tracks of wolves. It can be impossible to distinguish a large dog from a wolf from a single track. Instead, if possible look for the pattern of the trail left by the animal.
Dogs' pattern of walking reflects their domestic lifestyle. They do not rely on stealth, and tend to walk erratically. Their hind foot tracks seldom register within their forefoot tracks. They may also approach strange objects directly. Wolves on the other hand, tend to walk more directly when travelling. Their trails reflect this, as the track of the hind foot is placed within or directly in front of the forefoot. Wolves will also approach strange objects cautiously, often circling widely to investigate rather than approaching directly.
The best way to determine if wolves are present is to find their tracks. Wolf tracks are fairly easy to pick out, as they can be more than twice as big as a coyote's. They can sometimes be confused with the tracks of large dogs, but the key is in how they walk. Whether it's on a packed trail, or through deep snow, a wolf wastes very little energy while traveling. Their tracks are nearly always in a straight line, with the left and right paws only slightly offset, usually 6 inches or less. Compared to wolves, dogs walk like they are drunk.
Their tracks are distinctly scattered, and often appear more "wandering." Also, even on hard trails, dogs tend to drag their toes when they walk, whereas wolves generally leave a cleaner stride. In deep snow, distinct tracks are rarely visible. Look for a narrow trail with in-line footprints. When a pack runs through deep snow, they usually step in the same tracks as the wolf in front of them, which leaves even more pronounced prints. Also, you can usually see where their bodies have pushed a trail through the snow. The way they travel often makes it tough to determine how many are in a pack.
The tracks of wolves are usually larger than the tracks made by dogs. The average wolf track is about 4 inches long and 4 inches wide. While that's not an infallible method for distinguishing between the two, the majority of tracks measuring longer than 4 inches belong to wolves, not dogs. However, some very large dogs may produce tracks of about this size.
Dogs often wander about widely, nonchalantly traveling from one interesting smell to the next. By contrast, wolves seek to maximize their energy efficiency and move with a purpose. These behavioral differences can manifest in the tracks of the two canids. Whereas wolf tracks typically occur in nearly straight lines between resource patches, dog tracks may meander about wildly. Wolves usually travel single-file. In deep snow, each one may place his feet in the tracks left by the wolf in front of him.
The stride length of wolves is much longer than that of dogs, but because stride length varies with the pace of the animal and such factors as the grade of the land, it is not always a good diagnostic criterion. Trackers distinguish wolf tracks from dog tracks by noting that wolves "single-track": Their hind feet prints fall on top of their front prints. By contrast, dogs have proportionally wider chests than wolves do, which causes their rear feet to fall beside, rather than on top of the prints made by the front paws. Additionally, the left and right tracks are often less than 6 inches apart from each other.
Take every possible piece of evidence into account when examining unknown tracks, besides the details of the prints, consider other clues that may inform your conclusion. First, consider the geography of the area - wolves live in only a few locations south of the U.S. - Canada border, including parts of New Mexico, Arizona, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan. Additionally, the habitat should provide some clues, as wolves seldom dwell in suburban or urban areas, preferring vast wilderness. By contrast, coyotes and dogs are common in human-altered habitats.
DOG & CAT IDENTIFICATION:
TRACKS, PRINTS, PAWS & STEPS
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Cats and dogs use their paws for more than just walking. Both dogs and cats have four paws that get them around, cushion their body weight and allow them to manipulate objects. While Fluffy's and Fido's paws might appear similar at first glance, a closer inspection reveals quite a few differences between the two. When spotting tracks in the sand or snow, you may be wondering what type of track it is and whether it is a canine or feline paw print. Besides walking, cat and dog paws also serve other functions. Dogs sweat from their paws, can maneuver objects, dig holes or impress your friends with a friendly shake. Kitties probably won't shake paws with your guests, but they can climb with their paws, use them as weapons and shred food or perhaps, on occasion, things in your home best left un-shredded. There are some easy ways to differentiate between the two. Knowing the anatomy and shape of canine and feline paws will help determine whether you are following a dog or a cat. The most commonly found tracks can sometimes be confusing. How do you tell the difference between the tracks of dogs and cats? Was that track you found on the trail left by a mountain lion or a big dog?
Feline Paw Anatomy
Feline front paws have a total of seven pads. There are five digital pads, one large plantar pad (heel pad) and one small wrist pad. Feline back paws have a total of five pads. There are four digital pads and one large plantar pad (heel pad). Typically felines have five nails on the front paws, one each to the digital pad. Due to a genetic disorder, some felines may have up to seven nails. Felines have four nails on the back paws, one to each digital pad.
Canine Paw Anatomy
Canine front paws have a total of six pads. There are four digital pads, one large metacarpal pad (heel pad) and one carpal pad. Canine back paws have five pads. There are four digital pads and one large metacarpal pad (heel pad). Canines have five nails on the front paws, one each to the digital pad. Canines have four nails on the back paws, one each to the digital pad. Sometimes canines have a fifth nail higher up on the paw called the dew claw and in many instances this is removed when young.
Feline Paw Shape
The shape of a paw is identified by the shape of the pads as well as the placement of the pads. The overall feline paw is a circular shape and the digital pads are teardrop shaped. The feline plantar pad has three lobes on the hind end that are aligned with one another and two lobes on the front end. The most notable difference is the placement of the front two toes (or pads). In felines they are not close together - one pad print is higher than the other.
Canine Paw Shape
The canine paw is more oval and the canine digital pads are triangular. The canine metacarpal pad has two lobes on the hind end with one lobe on the front end. With regard to the placement of the front two toes, the canine's toes are aligned and close together.
Cats and dogs have pads on the bottom of their feet that act as a cushion. Your cat's front paw has seven pads. Five are digital - sort of like a person's toes. There's also a large pad on the heel, called the plantar pad and a small one on the wrist or carpal area. In contrast, your dog has a total of six pads - four are digital, one on the heel and one on the carpal area. Your dog also has a dewclaw, sometimes referred to as a dog's thumb, on the inside of each front leg. The dewclaws never make contact with the ground.
Nails and Claws
Cats have retractable claws, meaning they can extend them or sheathe them. When a cat is relaxed, walking or playing gently, the claws are sheathed. If your kitty needs a tool or a weapon to bring down that mouse, however, the claws will be extended. In contrast, your canine has nails that are always extended, similar to a person's fingernails.
While both the feline and canine have four toes on both the front and back feet, the main difference is shown by the inclusion and exclusion of claws in the prints. A canine paw print will always have claw marks whereas the feline paw print will not show any signs of claws because of the ability to retract them. If the cat is running, then the claws may be visible. Front tracks are larger than hind tracks in both felines and canines. Since feline paws have a toe (pad) that is ahead of the other, this enables you to determine whether it is the front left or front right paw. If the toe that is furthest ahead is on the right, this is the left paw. If the toe that is furthest ahead is on the left, this is the right paw. Canine prints do not have this distinction due to the front two toes being aligned.
There are some clues that will help you tell the difference between dog and cat tracks. Dogs include such species as red and gray foxes, coyotes, wolves and domestic dogs. Cats include mountain lions, bobcats, lynx, and domestic cats. Lynx tracks have some unique features of their own, so are not treated here. What is said here should apply to bobcats, mountain lions and domestic cats. If you look closely, you can sometimes even tell the difference between right and left tracks, as well as front and hind tracks.
Front tracks are usually larger than hind tracks. This is true for both dogs and cats. The tracks of these two species are frequently confused because dogs are one of the only animals that make tracks of the same approximate size and shape as those of the cougar/mountain lion.
What makes Dog track
A: The claw marks. Dogs usually show claw marks in their tracks. However, it is possible to see claw marks in cat tracks, but this is usually when the animal is running or pouncing.
B: The lack of a third lobe on the hind edge of the heel pad. See cat tracks below for the difference. Although it is visible in some dog tracks, the third lobe is located higher, not aligned with the other two as it is in cats.
C: The shape of the leading edge of the heel pad is a single lobe. See cat tracks for difference.
D: The alignment of the front two toes. They are side-by-side, or very close to it, in dogs tracks. There are exceptions, such as when the animal is making a turn or walking on a slope.
E: The almost triangular shape of the pads of the outer two toes. Take a look at the photo to see this more clearly as my drawing is not the best for indicating this feature.
F: Dogs have a little point where the heel pad turns. Cats share this feature.
What makes Cat track
A: Note that the front two toes are not lined up side-by-side as the dog prints were. The toe that is further forward is analogous to a human middle finger - your longest finger. The alignment of this toe will tell you whether you have a left or right track. This toe is the inner toe of the leading pair.
B: The leading edge of the heel pad has two parts, or lobes.
C: The hind edge of the heel pad has three parts, or lobes. They are aligned with each other.
D: This is the front track. One clue that tells you this is that the edge of the heel pad is relatively straight. See hind track for difference.
E: Cats have a little point where the heel pad turns. Dogs share this feature.
DOG NAIL STRUCTURE
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About 1' to 3' above the inside of their front feet and sometimes rear fee, dogs may have "5th nails" commonly referred to "dew claws." Nail clipping should include these nails. Since dew claws are never exposed to friction from touching ground surfaces, they are often longer and sometimes overgrown. In fact, you may find neglected dew claws grown into a full circle circle and even painfully ingrown requiring veterinary care. It is not uncommon for pets to have dew claws on some feet, and not on others.
There is a blood vessel in pet dog and cat nails. It is commonly referred to as "the quick." The quick is usually visible to the eye except for dark-colored nails. Because it is possible to cut the quick and cause a nail to bleed, many pet owners are fearful of cutting their pet's nails. Instead, they bring their dogs to groomers or veterinarians for clipping.
If the quick is already very near nail tips, daily filing for approximately three weeks may encourage nail quicks to recede enough for a comfortable, bloodless nail clipping. However, the recession during those three weeks is likely to be enough to clip the tips of the nails without bleeding.
Inform the pet owner if they will continue to file the dog's nail several times a week, you will be able to clip the nails a little shorter each time until they have properly receded and avoid discomfort caused by overly long nails. Thereafter, the nails should be clipped and filed on a regular basis in order to maintain their healthy state, and prevent the pet from having to undergo bleeding nails. There is almost no risk of causing the nails to bleed when filing them.
Indoor dogs typically require more frequent nail inspections. Outdoor dogs or those taken for regular walks on hard surfaces like concrete sidewalks usually require less maintenance since the friction of their nails against hard surfaces helps to limit nail growth and encourage quicks to properly recede away from nail tips.
What's inside your dog's toenail?
On the left, the interior structures are shown, along with the suggested angle to remove the "roof" of the nail, while not harming the sensitive quick. On a black claw, the interface between sensitive and insensitive nail is usually chalky and white, very easy to discern. On the right is a close-up view of the inside of the nail. On cross section, the sensitive quick will look translucent and glossy, like living flesh. In untrimmed claws, there will often be a "notch" below the tip of the quick. It is usually safe to initiate your angled cut at the notch.
Some dogs act like cutting their nails is their worst nightmare. This may be a learned behavior from their painful, overstimulated toes, which will slowly dissipate along with the pain once the nails are short. Use all your best restraint and behavior modification tricks to get through the initial phase, whether your dog is a squirmer or a drama queen.
Start on the hind feet, because the nails tend to be a little shorter and less sensitive than the front. But remember you can't make an accurate cut on a moving target so get help from your dog trainer or groomer if needed. Make nail trimming "quality time" you spend with your dog. Lots of kisses, lots of treats and a positive attitude go a long way. If you dread it, your dog will too, so learn how to be a good actor until you succeed in believing it can be a loving experience for you both. If your dog loses patience quickly, try cutting one nail a day. As long as you keep the order of toes consistent, this will be a good maintenance schedule, giving every toe a trim every 16 days. Short toenails are critical to your dog's health and soundness. Failure is not an option!
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Say the words "dog booties," and images of pampered lapdogs in snazzy pink high tops may spring to mind. To many dog owners, canine footwear seems about as necessary as those Hermes collars. But believe it or not, booties are not just for dogs who own more accessories than you. Canine feet may be tough, but certain conditions extreme heat or cold, rough terrain, or just a lot of running on pavement can cause serious wear and tear. In these case wearing boots can help keep your dog out of pain and on the go.
Does my dog need boots?
Gently press on your dog's paw pads. Wincing or yelping is a sign of tender, sore feet. If your dog's lifestyle is tough on her feet, and her paws are showing the signs of it, consider buying her dog booties. Think about what your dog walks on. Do any of the following apply?
You live in a cold climate where salt or chemicals are put on streets and sidewalks to melt the ice. Not only can salt and ice-melters irritate paws, they can cause stomach upset when your dog licks her feet.
Note: You do not necessarily need to buy boots for this - you can also rinse your pup's feet in warm water after wintertime outdoor walks.
Your dog walks on hot pavement in summer
Your dog walks and runs a lot.
You often take your dog over rough terrain, subjecting her tootsies to jagged rocks, thorns, burrs, and foxtails
Your dog's healing from a paw injury
You want to keep your dog from scratching herself
Fun! - Dogs love running around and do their part in this world. What dog owner doesn't want their pooch to be safe,comfortable ,life enjoying? Dog boots play a major factor in all these three! There is no better way to make sure that dog has everything he needs for that than the right equipment for every circumstance. Not to mention that boots make dogs look good too. Not not only are the functional, but stylish and fashionable as well! They make every dog stand out to even add to their cuteness!
Dogs with environmental allergies
Dogs with contact allergies to grass or other allergens found on or near the ground, roads and grass may benefit.
Dogs needing to keep their paws dry and clean while outside because they are recovering from injuries.
Senior dogs with weak legs
Boots help provide traction for dogs whose hind limbs splay out when they are trying to get their bearings on slippery floors.
Water can soften your dogs' paws and make them weaker to harsh concrete in and around pools and extra sensitive to hot sand.
Snow can freeze on dogs' paws and cause problems. Salt-spread sidewalks can also imperil your pooch's pads by burning them.
Prolonged walking on hot pavements can cause cracked paws.
Rough, abrasive terrain
can cut dog's paws. Take a look at your dog's feet. Many dogs are not crazy about having their feet handled, so be slow and gentle and praise her to the skies if she cooperates. Look for these warning signs that her paws are getting beat up:
Blisters, burns, or swelling
Cracks or cuts
Seeds and burrs stuck between the paw pads.
What kind of boots should I get?
You have got a lot of options. Think about what kind of conditions your pup will be walking in, then bring her to a pet supply store and try on a few. You can also find boots online - some makers will even customize them to fit.
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Here are some things to consider:
Do they fit? They should be snug enough to stay on, but not so tight that they cut off circulation.
Do they stay on? Let her do some practice laps around the store you won't want the ones that come off quickly.
Are they easy to take on or off?
Do they offer enough traction to keep your dog from slipping?
Are they water repellant? Useful if you will be walking in rain and snow.
Does the material breathe? Helpful if you are walking on hot pavement.
Is the material reflective? A nice feature if you plan to walk at night.
Are they high enough to protect the legs as well as the feet? Useful if you are walking through scratchy brush.
TOP DOG BOOTS & SHOES
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We spent 22 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. We all wear shoes or boots to protect our feet from rugged terrain, water and hot pavements in the summer. So why shouldn't your canine companion enjoy the same level of protection? Go on, pick up a couple of pairs of these dog booties for your best friend, so he or she can join you throughout the year in any conditions.
The Muttluks All Weather
are one of the best quality dog booties you can find on the market. They are super durable and well insulated to protect paws from burning hot pavement or frozen icy sidewalks.
are made of rubber and have an elasticity to them, which helps them stay on better for high activity dogs. They can also be rinsed off quickly and easily then just hung for quick air drying.
The My Busy Dog
are extremely durable and well made, with high quality stitching that won't fray even if your dog chews at them a bit. You can choose from eight different size options, and they are available in red or darkviolet.
Save your pup's paws from the freezing cold and rough terrain using Ultra Paws.
They have a flexible sole that is waterproof, plus they provide great traction on slippery floors for senior dogs or those with hip conditions.
The Bark Brite Paw Protectors
are a great option for those who go on a lot of nighttime romps with their best friend. Their dual reflective straps make your dog more visible to passing cars or bikes with lights.
A set of DuraPaws Dog Shoes
is thick and protective enough for use in snow and ice. They keep paws warm with their fleece lining and a rugged waterproof exterior prevents water from seeping through.
Unlike many dog booties, Lonsuneer Summer Simple Soft Mesh
aren't about protection from the cold, but from the hot ground caused by the summer sun instead. This makes them lightweight and breathable.
The bottoms of the Hiado CR1000-09
look as carefully designed and engineered as any pair of human's hiking boots or running shoes. They have mesh holes on the side to allow for better air flow for all season use.
The casual Pecute Sneakers
may not be the most practical option, but considering how cute they are and their extremely low price point, they are worth buying even if just for some photo time fun.
The Fashion Pet Performance
are for the pooch who wants to slog through even the deepest rain puddles in style and comfort while staying dry. After sloshing though mud and gunk, they are conveniently 100% machine washable.
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BOOTS, SOCKS & SHOES
at WWW.HEAVY.COM !!!
BEST DOG SOCKS
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Best Dog Socks:
Keep Your Dog Safe with Good Grippy Socks!
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Some of us think of dog socks and laugh at the idea. What a lot of people do not realize is that dog socks have tons of great benefits, seriously. Sure, they look cute as heck to boot, but, they also keep our furry friends warm and cozy, among other things, but we will get to that in a moment).
We have done some research for you, and we have come up with some of the best dog socks on the market. They do not just look cute either - they offer real benefits for you dog. Now let's get to it!
Como Puppy Knitted Socks
These are great socks for dogs. They are great looking, and they're super warm as well. Each set of socks are about 2.8" x 1.3" when they aren't stretched. They are durable, as they are made of good quality cotton and spandex. They are thick enough to protect their paws from anything that might injure them. Also, they are thick enough to keep your dog's paws warm in the winter time and when they walk on ice or snow. It will help when they have been playing outside and you want them to crawl up next to you on the couch without getting it dirty! Each pack includes one sock per foot for one dog. We'd recommend you use the measurements provided before and make sure the socks will fit your dog adequately.
WXBUY Dog Knit Weave Socks
These socks are absolutely adorable. They are complete with fun graphics on them that would look very stylish on your pup. They come in all different sizes, including: small, medium, large, and extra-large. They are knit woven with no-slip bottoms that won't skid. Additionally, they have some really cute themes, such as: bears, pigs, ballet shoes, etc. The best thing about these socks, however, is probably the price. You can buy these socks for under $5! We think that's an excellent value for the sock that you get. We highly recommend checking out these top-sellers!
RC Pet Products Dog Socks
These socks are a bit more expensive than the others we have reviewed. It's for good reason too. They have an excellent silicone sole that helps keep your pup on all fours. They are also super comfy. Almost like you want to stick your own feet in them. They also have much more surface area than other socks do. This makes them incredibly safe and incredibly functional. This particular sock length is 4.75 inch and it's 2 inches wide. Overall, it's a great sock for the buy. Like we said, it's a bit more expensive than some of the others, but we think you are getting a safe and functional sock for that price, and itill last forever.
Woodrow Wear Power Paws Sock
We heard a ton about the Power Paws, so we had to check them out ourselves. We were pleasantly surprised that the sock lived up to its expectations. These socks are long, but they're super effective. They protect the paws from heat as well as cold with their breathable design. Their designs support dogs that are anywhere from 7 to 90lbs. They come in sizes that range from 1.4 to 3 inches and 1 to 2 inches wide. They also help a lot with dogs that have extra-long nails. Overall, they are just an excellent sock with a well-built brand. They are quite expensive compared to the other socks we have reviewed. However, they can still be picked up for under $25, and they are definitely built to last, so we are sure you won't be disappointed. We highly-recommend this pair!
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Grippers Non Slip Dog Socks
Grippers, a Dog Quality product; are non-slip dog socks which give your older dog the traction they need on slippery indoor surfaces such as tile or hardwood. An innovative design provides a grip around the entire paw so even if the socks twist, your dog will continue to have the traction they need. 4 socks per set. The soft rubber coating creates a waterproof barrier so these dog socks can also be worn outdoors. No more having to take the traction socks on and off each time your dog goes outside. *Please note: Due to the rubber coating Grippers do not provide traction on snow or ice therefore we do not recommend using them under winter conditions.
RC Pet Products Pawks Dog Socks
This is another pair of RC's, but they are built different than the first ones we showed you. They are very cool and stylish looking. They have excellent, stylish anti-slip soles. They're also made from durable, quality cotton. These socks are made for a smaller breed, as the length is 3-5/8 inches high and 2 inches wide. However, RC does offer sizes that are larger than that. They are just a fun and functional way to help your aging senior dog out when they start to have trouble standing and walking on slippery surfaces. These socks can be picked up for an even $10. They are great, fun, and well-made socks that will help plenty when your dog needs them. We highly recommend them for that price.
Socks can be cute and a bit funny looking on dogs. However, people don't realize all the wonderful benefits they offer. They can become all but necessary when your dog gets into his senior age and needs help walking on certain surfaces. Your dog may fight you a bit to get them on, but it's a much better compromise than dog boots, and they're easier to get on as well. They just need some positive reinforcement when you are going through the process of putting them on, and they will likely grow to love them. We wish you luck going through this process!
DOG TATTOO DESIGNS
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Catherine Holden Robinson
To honor man's best friend in a sleek manner, your finest option is definitely a dog paw tattoo. Some have even gone as far as getting their dog's actual paw print tattooed on their body.
These cunning adornments carry an air of sublime sweetness that most body art seems to lack in this day and age. Dog paw tattoos are serenely sentimental creations that combine canine beauty with rugged austerity. Man's best friend has finally found a fitting tribute. The breed can be slyly determined by the shape of its footprint, and the overall impact will remain intact. Paw prints can be placed almost anywhere and still look amazing.
A single print can be placed on the shoulder or neck whereas a trail of paw prints can look nice around the ankle or "walking" up the side of the body. These masterpieces are swiftly adorned, and they usually only require black ink. As such, they are immediately accessible by all walks of life. You have seen many black paw prints, colorful paw print tattoos, but you have not seen a white ink paw print tattoo. What do you think about it? These tattoos are incredibly beautiful, and they even look like an amazing scar. If you are worried about your tattoo grabbing to much attention, now you do not have to worry anymore. White a white ink tattoo, that is never the case.
A complete path can be illuminated by having the tracks lead in a certain direction, or different types of prints can indicate a wildly mixed pack of animals. Nature enthusiasts absolutely adore dog paw tattoos, and they are also renowned by hunters who want to affectionately represent their most faithful ally. These cuddly critters are the greatest companions that mankind has ever known, and this connection can finally be taken a step further than previously allowed. Heartfelt decadence shall be yours for life with any of the gallant choices that we have presented in the succeeding compilation:
HOW TO TURN
YOUR DOG's PAW
INTO A BEAUTIFUL TATTOO
When your dog digs in the trash, you might want to charge him with a misdemeanor, haul him downtown and have him printed and booked, but there may be another reason you'd like his paw print. A tattoo of your dog's paw print can memorialize him forever in ink. Printing the paw is the first step, and from there you can use your imagination to create an adaptation you will be proud to display forever.
Prepare the Paw
Proper printing of your dog's paw isn't just about grabbing an ink pad and a piece of paper. If you're memorializing your dog's paw in the form of a tattoo, you want to afford yourself the best possible result when printing. Clean his paw well with a washcloth or pet wipe, making sure not to leave any lint behind when you're done. Make sure you clean between his pads to remove any debri. He will also need a proper pedicure so his nails don't interfere with printing the pads of his feet. Trim his nails properly prior to printing him or visit your groomer to make sure his paws are in tiptop shape. If your dog has a lot of fur around his pads, a visit to his groomer might be in order, as this fur should be removed so it doesn't interfere with his paw print.
Creating the Print
Once your dog's paw is prepped, it's time to create his print. You can use a nontoxic paint and brush and carefully paint his pads, or you can choose a nontoxic ink pad. If you choose the ink pad, press his paw into the ink or roll the ink onto his pads. You may want to use the buddy system for this step so that someone is holding him, preventing his paw print from smearing if he tries to fidget or pull away. Speak calmly and never scold your dog if he appears frightened or reluctant. Use treats so that he sees this activity as something positive. Once you have the paint or ink on your dog's paw, press it firmly onto a sheet of clean white paper. You may want to make several prints so that you can choose the best print once you review your results.
Designing Your Tattoo
Once you have printed your dog's paw print, you can head off to your favorite tattoo artist, or you may want to add something to the print to finalize your design. The options are unlimited. You may choose to incorporate your dog's name into your tattoo, his date of birth, or perhaps a heart if your dog has already passed. You can visit an online tattoo design website for ideas and tips on designing your own personal dog paw print tattoo.
The Tattoo Process
Choose a reputable tattoo artist to complete your tattoo. Present your design or ask your artist to embellish upon the paw print and create your design for you. The final design is a called a flash. Your artist can use a flash machine to increase or reduce the size of your design. Prior to visiting your tattoo artist, educate yourself on the risks and precautions of tattoo art.
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