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Doggy Paw Care

Does your canine pal know any paw tricks, like Shake or Gimme Five? Fido’s furry feet are pretty cute. They’re also crucial to his health and well-being! Read on as a Mt. Airy, MD vet offers some advice on caring for your dog’s feet.

Claws

Overgrown nails probably don’t sound like a big deal, but they can actually be quite problematic. For one thing, they often snag and tear, which can cause painful infections. They’re also quite uncomfortable. Fido may adjust his stride to compensate. This puts a lot of stress on his bones and joints, especially with senior dogs. If you aren’t sure about the proper way to clip your pet’s nails, ask your vet to demonstrate techniques. You may want to get clippers that are equipped with sensors, which will take the guesswork out of the process. Of course, you can also call us to schedule a quick nail trim.

Paw Pads

Your canine buddy’s paw pads act as cushions and shock absorbers, and help him gain traction. And, since Fido is running around barefoot, he can easily hurt himself by stepping on things. It’s a good idea to get into the habit of checking your pup’s paws regularly. You’ll want to look for ticks, cuts, and embedded glass or pebbles. Small issues, like a minor scrape or a splinter, can usually be treated at home, but call your vet right away for anything more than that. Paw problems can be very painful, and can really affect your pet’s quality of life.

Walks

When you are walking your pooch, keep an eye on the terrain. Steer Fido around potential hazards, like broken glass.

Weather

Fido’s paw pads are quite delicate, and can easily get burned or blistered on hot surfaces. Stick to soft ground as much as possible. Dogs’ paws are especially delicate when they are wet, so be extra careful after your pooch has been swimming. Winter can also be dangerous: snow, salt, sand, and ice can all cause painful abrasions. Use paw balm or wax to protect your pet’s paw pads and keep them from chafing. Petroleum jelly will also work in a pinch. You may also want to get into the habit of washing your dog’s paws with a damp cloth.

Please contact us, your Mt. Airy, MD vet clinic, for all of your pet’s veterinary care needs. We’re here to help!

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