When it comes to dog foot care, here are some of the things that I do with my dogs –
1. Dog Foot Care – Nail Grooming
It is important to groom a dog’s nails so that the dog is comfortable while walking and is less likely to get his long nails caught in brush and sticks.
The method that worked out well for me is to do nail-grinding instead of nail clipping.
Nail grinding allows you to slowly reduce your dog’s nails, with very little chance of hitting the quick within the nail. In fact, I hit the quick of my dog’s nails the first time I used a clipper on him, and there was a lot of screaming, running around, and blood on the floor. This has never happened with nail grinding.
Hitting the quick will cause bleeding and will be quite painful for your dog. Always have some nail styptic powder or gel available when grooming your dog’s nails to quickly stop the bleeding.
Nail grinding also allows you to slowly shape your dog’s nails so that they are nice and round and less likely to inadvertently cause damage when your dog scratches sensitive parts such as his ears or face.
Slowly introduce your dog to nail grinding sessions and make it fun and rewarding.
2. Dog Foot Care – Cracks on Foot Pads
Another foot care issue that arises, especially with my three legged dog, Shania, are cracks on her footpads. Larger dogs or three legged dogs put more weight on their feet, and may develop cracks on their footpads even from just walking on normal terrain.
Dogs may also hurt their footpads when hiking on irregular terrain, especially on rocky areas. If you are planning to take your dog on a long hike, consider getting him some dog shoes.
Shania develops cracks on her footpads from just her normal activity and from walking around the neighborhood. Recently, I started using a foot-pad cream that works pretty well – DermaPaw. I have only been using this cream for about one month, but there is already some good improvement on Shania’s foot-pads.
3. Dog Foot Care – Trimming Foot Fur
Finally, the fur between a dog’s toes can also become rather long, and this may cause the dog to slip, especially on hard, smooth surfaces.
To keep things safe for your dog, especially a three legged dog, keep his foot fur short so he has better footing while running and playing.
Practicing good dog foot care techniques is a very important part of keeping your dog happy and healthy.
I have a three legged pup who is a mixed bred and he has issues with cracked paws. I saw in the article that you use the DermaPaw and I was just wondering if you use just the cream or the whole treatment with the socks they provide? I’m wondering this because he really hates anything near his feet and I don’t think we would be able to get those socks on and stay on.
I used just the cream. I do it after I walk Shania or right before bedtime. Right before bedtime, I do the cream, then I give her some safe Kong toys to work on. In this way, she works on the toys and she is less likely to lick all the cream off.
Hi, Today with parvovirus we need to know how to clean the dog’s paws. Please respond. Does antibiotic soap dry his paws ? What do we use after a walk outside like at a park where there are other dogs ? Thanks ! Mrs Frank Marando
On serious dog health issues, it is best to consult with your vet.
Here is an article from UC Davis on parvo.
Here is an article from the ASPCA.
Zeke and Zoe says
I was thinking a bout adopting a three legged dog from the shelter. One of her BACK legs is missing. I was wondering do you think she’ll be able to use the bathroom okay outside?
I don’t think that would be an issue with most three legged dogs. However, it is best to check with the people from the shelter to see if she has any special needs.
Yay! I can actually find things again! Thanks!
Hey Alex, Thanks for letting me know.
It is difficult to tell sometimes which functionality people find useful so I rely on all of you to give me feedback.
I have added back the month-by-month links. Please let me know if there are more things you would like taken out, added, or anything at all relating to the new design.
I am trying to make it better so all comments are greatly appreciated 🙂 Thanks!
We got a special Dremel for dog nails, and it’s as you descibed — too weak. It would stop if we put too much pressure on it. I can see the quick in Lupin’s nails, so I’ve never hit them or hurt him from clipping.
Also I was wondering — WHAT HAPPENED TO YOUR PAGE?!
I can’t find anything on here. There’s only the categories, no month-by-month like before, and I had to search to even find this. (which I didn’t know existed until I found it)
I like the new layout and everything but not being able to find anything is going to get annoying! D:
lol – Yeah Shania is always rolling over on her back. She quickly figured out that she gets more attention and food when she does that 🙂
Also I would really go with the cordless Dremel. The Peticure has gotten some not so good reviews on Amazon. In particular, the primary complaints are that 1) It is not powerful enough and 2) It is not well-built and the grinder bands slip off, etc. etc.
I am very happy with the cordless Dremel that I have, although, with a larger dog, a larger grinder may be more effective.
The Peticure(tm) device advertised on TV for something like $30 looks like it does a great job of grinding down nails. For people without a Dremel like the one in your picture it looks like a good way to go.
P.S. I was surprised you included an alpha-roll picture 🙂 🙂