4 Signs of Footpad Injuries in Your Dog
Think of your pet’s footpad. It’s pretty tough right? Those paw pads are thick, spongy and should offer good protection for your pet.
However, they’re vulnerable to injury. It’s kind of like if you went around barefoot all the time.
Your feet would toughen up but you’d still be likely to step on a sharp rock or broken glass and cut your foot.
It’s no different for your pet.
In fact, cuts, blisters and other footpad injuries are common in dogs.
4 Signs of Footpad Injuries
1– Bleeding –There are a ton of blood vessels beneath the paw pads so it’s easy to have a lot of blood even with a superficial cut.
2–Limping or not putting weight on the paw –Check your pet’s paw. There may be something lodged between the toes like a pebble, or it may be more serious.
3–Discoloration of the pad—Healthy pads are usually all one color – dark. If your pet’s paw pads start lightening or develop spots, this could be the sign of a footpad injury or a serious illness. It’s best to make an appointment with your vet.
4–Excessive licking of pad – When your pet is “worrying” a particular area, that’s always cause for concern. Take a good look and see if you can tell what the problem may be.
Cuts and peeling pads will be obvious but other injuries may require a trip to the veterinarian for diagnosis. Most footpad injuries will require veterinarian care—stiches are sometimes required– and antibiotics to prevent infection.
Treating Footpad Injuries
While paw pad injuries can vary in their severity, they all need a thorough cleaning with a mild antiseptic. Your pet will be in pain and may fight you if you try to clean their paws. If this is the case, you’ll need to go straight to the vet.
Occasionally, severe injury results in a complete loss of the pad. The treatment then depends on which paw pad is gone. Each pad has a different role to play, for example, the pads associated with the middle toes bear weight so they’re especially important. For some smaller dogs they may be fine without them but for larger or active dogs, they may need a footpad graft.
No matter what the problem, your pet will need to heal and you’ll face the reality (and difficulty) of preventing your dog from licking his feet and trying to tear off the bandage.
- Your dog can sport the Elizabethan collar treatment. It works but is usually humiliating for your pet.
- You can also cover the bandaged foot with a sock and tape it up
- If you want an easier method for keeping the sock in place, try this unique suspender system for dogs.
Keep your pet safe from footpad injuries by ensuring your walks avoid broken glass and other obvious dangers.
Even hot pavement can cause burned paw pads. Pay attention to your pet’s paws, check the pads after walks and ask your vet about anything that looks suspicious.
This is a short overview and if you want to read more about footpad injuries from PetPlace veterinarians, read more here.