Pad and Paw Health for your Dog
During the winter, we frequently read about or see dog booties being advertised for dogs to help keep their paws and pads protected from the snow, sleet & chemicals used on the roads in the winter. But, it is equally important to protect your dogs paws and pads from summer dangers of bugs, burrs, foxtails, and hot pavement.
The other concern we have here in CA is hot pavement. I normally take the dogs to a park in the morning and we walk on a dirt trail. But their afternoon walk with our dog walker is in our neighborhood on the streets. There are some days when it’s just too hot. I posted a warning on Facebook last week reminding folks to test the heat level of the pavement before asking your dog to walk on it. Black pavement will be much hotter than concrete, but the best judge is your own hand – put the back of your hand against the pavement and see if you can hold it there for 5-10 seconds. If not, that it is too hot for your dog. And remember, if you stop to talk to a neighbor, move your dog off the pavement onto the grass.
Chlorine from the pool may dry out your pups paws, sand from the beach can irritate between the pads if not thoroughly rinsed off. Summer pests like bees, red ants and other critters may bite or sting. Since your dog is likely to be outside much more in the summer, extra attention should be paid to their paw and pad care. The best prevention is to be aware, to clean your dogs paws regularly and watch to see if start licking them excessively – that’s a sure sign of an irritant. If they appear dry and cracked, a paw cream to help soften and reduce inflammation is a good investment.