Dog Chewing on Paws – Why it Happens and What to Do About It

dog chew paws
3 minutes to read

Most dogs seem to chew on everything in sight but there’s still something unsettling about dog chewing paws. Now, that’s not to say dog chewing paws is not uncommon but rather to explain how chewing the sofa and chewing on a delicate paw are two very different things.

You might be worrying about this type of behavior, right?

Well, try not to get too worked up over it. Dogs like to lick like crazy and dog chewing paws is a very common sight for most owners. It’s true, there may be an issue with this paw and you may want to stop this happening regardless of the reason but either way, let’s take a closer look at the issue.

 

Dog Chewing on Paws: Why it Happens and Diagnosing the Problem

It’s common for dogs to get dirt or debris stuck between their paws. Splinters or shards of glass are other examples of highly irritable and painful injuries that your dog can experience. Some dogs are even so hardy that a fracture might be the issue but again, let’s not jump to conclusions.

If your dog has muddy paws, it’s not worth thinking about. Similarly, you do know that dogs lick their paws in order to clean their face? It’s not as common as with cats but it still happens.

However, a dog chewing on paws incessantly for no apparent reason, there might be a reason for this behaviour. Just so you know, unless you visit the local vet, it’s also tricky to establish this issue.

You see, with a dog chewing on paws, it’s hard to know what the actual problem might be. As a rule, it’s best to look for other symptoms that might seem unusual or out of the norm.

For example, can you spot any wounds or signs of irritation on this paw? Is there signs of swelling or limping? Perhaps your dog is unwilling to let you touch this particular paw?

Believe it or not, a food allergy can also cause your dog to have an allergic reaction that might prompt this kind of behaviour. Unfortunately, a dog chewing on paws can make the matter worse and potentially cause an infection or further damage to the inflicted area.

Unfortunately, when you leave some of these issues unattended, they can cause other problems such as a secondary infection. For this reason, it’s certainly best to visit your local veterinarian.

As for how these issues might be treated, medication is usually provided by the vet.

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What to Do About Your Dog Chewing on Paws

Before you do anything, it’s important to know that certain ointments can be harmful to dogs. Also, unless you feel confident, it’s always best to take your dog to the local vet. However, here are just a few common problems with dog chewing on paws and how to go about fixing the issue:

 

  • Puncture Wound – Puncture wounds can heal without treatment but this will still cause a lot of discomfort. If you find a puncture, take your dog to the vet or at least discourage them from licking or chewing on the area.
  • Splinters – If you find a splinter or foreign object stuck in your dogs paw, you should remove this object with a tweezers. If you cannot, take your dog to the vet right away.
  • Objects Between the Toes – Try to distract or comfort your dog using a treat and then slowly open each toe to check for objects in between. It’s important to know that dogs are highly sensitive when it comes to their toes and pulling too hard or pulling in the wrong way might cuase them to lash out.
  • Allergic Reaction – Check the ingredients and chemicals your dogs food. For the time being, stick to single ingredient food and consult your vet in terms of what alternatives to use. Also, consider what might be affecting your dog in the local environment such as the flowers, dust or air pollution.
  • Infection – Redness, swelling and sensitivity are often signs of infection. For most circumstances, you will need to get medication from the vet and try to discourage your dog from chewing on paws.

 

Final Thoughts

As already mentioned, it’s quite unsettling to watch your dog chewing on paws and this is especially true if this behaviour is uncommon. However, there is always a solution and most often a cause for chronic chewing, while the actual issue is rarely as bad as you might fear in the beginning.

Either way, the above should help you diagnose and potentially fix the problem but taking your dog to the local vet is always best when you suspect something more serious.

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