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  • Writer's pictureBear & Kind

Treating Cracked Paws At Home

If you walked around on bare feet day after day, you’d experience some wear and tear, right? Just as we humans will soak our feet after a long day or treat ourselves to the occasional pedicure, our dog’s feet deserve the same. While hot pavement, cold weather, rough or hard surfaces or contact irritation can all cause cracked, dry paws, there are a number of underlying health issues that can make your pupper downright crazy. So what causes cracked paws and what can we do to relieve the symptoms?

What Causes Cracked Paws?

Allergies can cause dry, itchy skin, ears and paws, caused your dog to scratch and bite themselves relentlessly.

Liver function issues can cause cracking of the skin and the paws.

Contact irritation can be caused by any number of chemicals in your dog’s environment including floor cleaner or disinfectant and garden fertilisers.

Zinc deficiency causes skin issues including dry cracked paws.

Wear and tear hot pavement in summer, hard or rough surfaces or ice salt in snowy winter weather to name a few.

Hyperkeratosis is a condition caused by the over production of keratin in dogs. This can cause paws to crack as well as hard skin crusts on the nose.

Treating Cracked Paws At Home

Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to offer your dog some relief at home. Make a mental note of where your dog has been prior to a flare up. Was he walked on especially rough terrain? Or in an area with a particular kind of grass? Did he show symptoms after using a household cleaner or garden fertiliser? If you can determine the source of the irritation you can start by limiting exposure.

What about his diet? Is he experiencing skin irritation on other areas of the body? Does he have an upset tummy? Are there any other signs that your dog is unwell? If so, cracked paws may be a symptom of a larger problem best diagnosed by your vet. Is your dog getting enough omega 3 fatty acids in his diet? A good quality fish oil supplement, or some fatty fish such as salmon or sardines will help.

Be mindful of the surfaces you are walking him on, especially with sore paws, and consider booties to protect sensitive toe beans, or rest and allow time to heal. Always inspect your dog’s paws after a walk and wipe down with a clean, damp cloth to remove dirt and debris that may cause irritation. If symptoms persist, always talk to your vet.

Is your pooch licking and chewing his paws? Try applying a natural paw balm to clean, dry paws, to soothe irritation and assist healing. If need be, you can put some dog socks on after applying the balm to give it a better chance to absorb into the skin. Our There There Pet Soothing Balm contains calendula, oats and carrot seed oil to ease irritation, and nourishing shea butter and hemp seed oil to protect and assist healing. Use daily on cracked paws, irritated skin and a dry, crusty nose.

We are also launching a new product in the soothing range very soon… a skin soak formulated to soothe irritated skin and soften cracked paws. Use in a small tub as a paw soak or add to his bath water to soften and soothe paws and other areas of the skin that may be affected. No need to rinse, just dry gently and follow with our soothing balm for best results. Stay tuned!

If your pupper sensitive to oatmeal or your vet has diagnosed the issue as a yeast infection, try our Sit Stay Heal Ouchie Balm instead… it contains calendula and comfrey to soothe and heal, with shea butter and hemp seed oil to soften cracked skin and protect toe beans.

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