Sore paws between paws or even just very rough and rough paws can not only be a nuisance, but can also escalate into serious infections.
If a wound, wound, infection, or underlying cause isn’t treated, your dog’s paw problem could get worse pretty quickly.
However, you don’t have to panic right away, often it’s just a simple roughness of your city puppy’s paws or a cut from a thorn in the forest.
Of course, the best way to rule out serious problems is to see your vet and have the paw checked.
This article should give you a quick overview of possible causes, home solutions, and what you can do in the meantime to help your furry friend.
Aching dog paws between the toes
Sore dog paws between the toes are most commonly caused by yeast or bacterial infections, ingrown hair or toenails, foreign bodies, lesions, skin allergies, or cysts.
Some causes could be related to each other such as ingrown hair or a deep cut resulting in bacterial infection.
I’ll go into more detail below about how these infections are usually treated or what you can do at home, but let’s stick to the various causes for now.
Keep in mind that you can only choose the right treatment if you know the underlying cause.
First, check your dog’s paws for any external problems such as foreign bodies or injuries.
While a visit to the vet is helpful, regardless of what caused your dog’s sore paws between the toes, it may be more urgent if it’s a painful, pus-filled abscess than a slight redness due to a foreign object. .
By the way: some breeds are more prone to problems between the toes.
Prone breeds include those with short, coarse hair such as English Bulldogs or dogs with straps that can be easily injured such as Labrador Retrievers.
Red dog paws between the toes.Home remedies
Home remedies for red dog paws between paws can include antiseptic wipes or sprays, soothing balms, or butter.
Alternatively, you may also be able to use chamomile, apple cider vinegar, or coconut oil, but you shouldn’t consider these as a primary treatment.
Clean your dog’s paws well in the meantime.
This will help avoid paw problems in the future as well.
That said, if your dog has something that looks like a pimple (abscess or cyst), you should see your vet as soon as possible.
While these home remedies are benign most of the time, it’s not ideal to smear something on your dog’s paw without knowing the exact cause.
If you consult your vet and can rule out any serious problems, you might want to try discussing home remedies and what you can do to relieve your dog’s swollen or itchy paw.
To heal a small wound after a cut or after removing a foreign object, these home solutions can really help get rid of the redness between your dog’s paws.
Painful treatment between the toes
A vet will determine whether or not the sore paw is caused by bacteria, parasites or fungi and will prescribe the appropriate treatment which in many cases is antibiotics.
Never try to play a doctor by giving your dog any drugs you have left over or the like and consult your vet if you are unsure of the cause.
Since there are a lot of possible problems, it’s hard to pin down what exactly your vet will do.
Dogs whose red paws are caused by allergies can often be helped with the right diet and / or supplements, as well as possibly modern conventional treatments.
However, if the cause is a cyst or cancer, the vet will prescribe a completely different treatment and the red paw would be just one symptom of potentially many.
Raw dog paw pads
Raw dog pads should be treated and given time to heal as they can roughen even more and eventually crack or crack, which could be painful and an open invitation for bacteria.
Trust me, I experimented with this with my Rottweiler (I just bandaged her front legs, more on that below).
While some dogs have quite soft paws, I was quite surprised at how rough my Rottie’s paws can get over time.
The ground your dog walks on and how you care for the paw pads will determine whether your dog’s paws are rough or soft.
Don’t get me wrong, dog paws are never heavenly but they can reach an acceptable level where they are not only healthier and less prone to injury, but also better for you.
You don’t want your 100-pound dog slapping you in the face with a paw that appears to peel off your skin. Or maybe it’s just me.
Where does my dog walk?
Well, during the day he walks almost exclusively on softer dirt terrains found in forests or grassy fields.
In the evening, however, we go for a walk in the neighborhood on asphalt.
As you can imagine, classic pavements, asphalt and all that jazz will roughen your dog’s paws much more than softer ground.
So one thing is for sure, city dog owners will have a harder time caring for their dog’s paws (easier on nails though as they are naturally clipped on asphalt) than people in the countryside.
However, where your dog walks is not the only contributor to your dog’s paws.
It is also how far your puppy runs and how far you are generally walking on which ground.
I have found that my dog is the most prone to paw injuries if I let her run on asphalt as she often chases a ball only to turn quickly when she was zooming near the toy and this is incredibly tense for the paws.
Dog Paw Pad Skin Hanging
Hanging skin on your dog’s paws may seem scary, but it is often not as bad as we initially assume. You should still take good care of the paws and check for any visible wounds or infections, and if there are none, try to avoid them until they are healed.
This has happened to my pup and although you may be tempted to pull it like a loose thread, don’t.
There’s a chance you might just make things worse with the skin peeling off too soon, in which case the bacteria could be causing an infection.
If the paw has a lot of hanging skin and you’re afraid it may be deep enough already, consult your vet.
Look for signs that your dog is in pain which include, but are not limited to:
- Avoid lowering the paw
- Excessive licking of the legs
- Panting or whimpering
When this happened to my dog, there was no vet available, so since my dog behaved completely normal and showed none of these signs, I just wrapped both front legs the way you do- from-you as seen above.
Is this the best solution?
Probably not, but until you can see a vet in a non-emergency, that can be good enough, assuming you probably know the cause.
What I mean by knowing the cause is when, for example, your dog’s paws have stiffened over time already during walks and the paw pad has finally started to come off.
External factors such as slipping on asphalt, thorns stuck in the forest paw or other foreign bodies or injuries can also cause loose skin on the paw pad.
Dog paw wound healing time
A slight injury to your dog’s paw pads usually heals within a week or so, while severe infections or parts where the skin has peeled off can easily take 2-4 weeks or longer to fully heal.
You can speed up healing by using dog paw balm regularly and avoiding rough surfaces.
My dog’s paws had cracked quite a bit and it took about 1-2 weeks for visible improvement and easily 4 weeks before they were in great shape again.
The worse your dog’s injury, the longer it will take to heal.
Likewise, in the event that your dog has received antibiotics or if there is a secondary infection, healing could take several months.
Healthy versus unhealthy dog paws
An unhealthy dog paw can be expressed by extreme roughness, peeling pads, bleeding, or any type of infection between the paws with red or swollen spots.
Even if dog owners don’t check their dog’s paws regularly, some dogs will show their own signs (don’t rely on this though).
Signs that your dog has paw problems include reluctance to put the paw down or be touched, limp, whimper, and general lethargic behavior if infection and / or pain is involved.
Check your dog’s paws after each walk when cleaning them as this will avoid problems along the way.
You can quickly remove anything that’s stuck in there which could potentially lead to infections as well, and keeping them clean will further reduce that risk.
How do i know if my dog’s paws are healthy?
Your dog’s paws are healthy if you can’t spot any redness, bleeding, or swelling.
A healthy paw is moderately smooth, and if you clean and care for them properly, your dog’s paws are likely to be healthy.
A healthy paw is black (or sometimes pink with spots) and shows no signs of tearing or swelling as noted above.
If your dog’s paw is just a little rough or is currently recovering, you may be able to use the home remedies mentioned here (paw balm / butter, chamomile, coconut oil, antiseptic wipes, etc.).
Should dog paws be rough? How can I soften them?
Yes, dog paws are different for each breed and are highly dependent on the surfaces they walk on and the care they receive, but the paws shouldn’t be too rough or uneven.
You can soften your dog’s paws by introducing a proper grooming routine, using a natural paw balm or butter, and using dog boots on rough terrain.