Whether your dog is walking on the cold, harsh snow, or your dog is dealing with the heat of the summer, taking care of your dog's nails and checking their paws regularly is important. The pads on the bottom of your dog's paws are sensitive and subject to a number of problems if not properly monitored by the pet owner. If your dog isn't putting pressure on one of their paws, or you can hear their nails clicking on the floor as they run, it's time to give their paws a close inspection.
Trim Your Dog's Nails Regularly
Just like people, dogs need to have their nails trimmed on a regular basis. Your dog's nails should barely touch the ground when they walk. Nails that are too long get snagged easily, causing pain for your pooch. If you aren't sure how to trim your dog's nails, ask your veterinarian on the next visit. If you are too nervous to do the job, you can either ask your vet if this service is offered or bring your dog to a groomer.
Check Your Dog's Paw Pads
Dogs have pads on the bottom of their feet. When these pads become injured, they can crack, bleed, and even become infected. The pads can easily dry out, causing the pads to crack. It's important to use lotion specifically made for the use of your dog's pads. If you try to use lotion made for people, this can cause the pads to become too soft and lead to another set of problems.
In the hot summer months, your dog's paw pads can become blistered or burnt from walking on hot surfaces. A good rule to follow is that if the surface is too hot for you to walk on barefoot, it is probably too hot for your dog's paws too. If your dog has burned the bottom of their paws, you should clean the paws with anti-bacterial soap and wrap loosely with gauze if possible. Avoid long walks outside while your dog's paws heal.
When the weather is really cold, your dog's paw pads can get dry quickly from the ice and snow. Harsh salt and sand used to treat walkways can cause the paw pads to dry out even further.
Your dog's paw pads are also susceptible to small pebbles and other debris. Check your pet's paws closely for debris while you are trimming their nails, and remove any debris carefully.
For a veterinarian in your area, contact a company such as Midtown Veterinary Clinic.