3 Reasons to Pay Special Attention to Your Dog’s Paws in Spring
By guest blogger, Zara Lewis (@ZaraELewis on Twitter)
As you know I blog a lot of Sherman’s allergies which are terrible year round so when writer, Zara Lewis, contacted me about this topic I thought readers would love to learn about ways to protect your dog’s paws this spring. Enjoy this contributed article! Let us know what you think in the comments section below! Remember I’m not a Vet! If you find that your dog is experiencing any issues please see your Veterinarian.
If only dogs could talk! It would be much easier for us as pet parents to understand their pains, troubles and fears, and of course, nurturing their health would be incredibly simpler. Fortunately, their body-language and everyday behavior are excellent indicators of their overall health and potential issues that might arise in near future. That’s why it’s crucial to be tuned in to your pooches’ needs and changes of behavior.
Spring can be a particularly tricky time for certain dogs, and taking a closer look at their squishbeans can make all the difference between turning spring into a joyful playground or a painful period of perpetual troubles. Here’s why you need to be mindful of your puppy’s paws and how you can alleviate its “pawblems” with these health tips!
Paws Are Prone to Skin Issues
Even though it’s most common to expect patches of red, dry skin and losing fur in certain spots on their body, the skin of your puppy’s paws can be equally sensitive to infections and inflammation. Most common symptoms that arise especially during warm months are itchiness, redness, pain and swelling, sometimes even loss of skin and small lumps.
Since these issues can have many different causes (bacteria, fungi, allergies or viruses among others), it’s important to consult your vet and decide on a treatment plan after the diagnosis. Paws are especially sensitive to these seasonal changes, so take precautions by checking them every day to make sure they are healthy. Of course, you can also use paw soaks and baths to help your pet cope with potential harmful substances.
Biting and Chewing Can Indicate Allergies
As the warm days arrive and your dog eagerly spends every second of every day examining all of those new scents and spring fragrances, digging around, sticking their noses in mud and dirt, their paws are the first to get into contact with potential allergens, causing irritation and itching.
While it’s perfectly normal dog behavior to clean themselves every now and then, if your dog is constantly stopping to lick, nibble and chew on his paws, then you might have an issue on your hands. You’d be surprised how many allergens we share with our four-legged friends, such as weed, insect bites, pollen, grass, feathers, and dust being only a few on the list!
Including certain preventative measures can be extremely helpful. As soon as I know that spring is just around the corner, I start giving my pup first-rate Net to Pet flea and tick protection chewables, which will keep your pooch safe and sound. I also use some homemade foot soaks at the first sign of irritation, or even to prevent allergic reactions when we spend plenty of time outside.
Paw Licking Can Indicate Joint Pain
Sometimes, your pet pooch can exhibit signs of anxiety by excessively licking its paws, or it might be simply healing a burn from hot pavement, or an ingrown nail. By grooming your dog regularly and caring for its emotional and physical well-being, you’re ensuring that your dog’s licking isn’t caused by any of those issues. If the licking persists with no visible causes, you’ll need to consider some other options.
It’s particularly tricky during spring to distinguish between a slight allergic reaction causing excessive licking and an underlying issue, especially with older dogs, so it’s critical to pay extra attention during warmer months of the year. If you see that regular foot baths, herbal remedies and other preventative measures aren’t reducing the licking, then you should consider checking if it has joint pain caused by arthritis.
Your pooch might be trying to mitigate the pain in in their joints by licking them constantly. If you’re having trouble distinguishing between the subtle signs and symptoms, or you have a tendency to panic, you can always ask your Veterinarian to put your mind at ease, and make sure you have all the information before picking out the right treatment plan for your pup.
There’s nothing quite like caring for your dog’s health and needs and making it happy, so it’s essential to stay cautious and aware even when sunny days kick in, no matter how tempting it is to devote all of your time to running around and playing with your four-legged best friend. Keep them healthy and happy to make sure it enjoys every sunny day of the spring carefree!
Thank you Zara!