Basic Care for your Dog’s Feet

You know, if your feet do not feel comfortable you really do not want to go out and run a marathon. Well, dogs are the same way. Long nails, hair between the toes, cracked pads, and grime can all cause irritation to a dog’s feet and left untreated this irritation can lead into something more serious. To keep this from happening there are a few hygiene habits you need to get into the habit of doing for your dog so that you and your best friend can continue to stroll through life’s journey.

Cleanup Minor Dirt

I really like to equate this out to cleaning a baby. When a baby feeds itself it gets food everywhere. Unless you are going somewhere, you normally simply wipe the baby’s face and hands down. Depending on how much food there is on the baby, you may even change the outfit. When it comes to a dog though sometimes a simple wiping down of the paws is all that is needed. As an example, if your dog goes out with you to get the mail. In this example, you would not give your dog a full bath; you would simply wipe the paws off. While you could use a towel moistened with water, a better approach is to use a premoistened towelette, which is very similar to a baby wipe but do not use ones designed for humans. Many of these have chemicals on them that can harm your fur baby. To prevent this only use premoistened wipes that are formulated for dogs, which can be purchased from your veterinarian.

Wash Major Dirt

If your dog’s feet end up covered in mud as an example, you will need to do something beyond wiping the paws off. In this case, wash the paws with soap and do not forget to get between the toes along with cleaning underneath the nails.

Also, properly dry the paws of your pet. This means getting between the toes and making sure the fur is dry. While you are doing this take a good look at the health of your dog’s feet. If you see cracks, broken nails, etc address them then and continue to monitor the problem until they are healed.

Trim the Hair

To keep the paws from collecting a bunch of debris, consider trimming the fur between and around the toes. But…do not cut the fur from around the pads of the paw. Why you may ask? Well the reason is that the fur around the pads protects them from harmful substances by tangling it up in the fur before it gets to the pad. The other reason is you may end up nicking the pads while you try to trim the hair. In just, leave the hair alone around the pads.

Put Booties On

While booties will help protect your dog’s feet, do not simply rely on them for proper foot care. Yes, they will keep your dog’s feet dry and debris free but always remember that just like you, a good washing of your feet along with proper hygiene will make the difference between enjoying a walk with your furry friend or having to carry your fur baby home.