It is of the utmost importance for people who own pets to be able to distinguish between behaviors that are typical and those that might raise concerns. Licking their paws is one of the ways that dogs groom themselves. If your dog sometimes licks itself in order to clean itself, you need not be worried about this behavior since it is natural and has no cause for alarm. If your dog is biting their paws or licking them persistently and furiously, this is a reason for worry and you may wish to visit your veterinarian about this matter.
Why Does My Dog Bite Its Paws?
Your Dog May Have Allergies
Skin and paws that are red and itching are common symptoms of dog allergies. The majority of the time, a dog’s tendency to bite, chew, and lick at its feet on a regular and persistent basis is caused by allergies.
Dogs who are allergic to both their surroundings and the food they eat can often develop red, inflamed feet (along with other portions of their body), and they may begin to lose hair in these areas. In contrast to what many people believe, environmental allergies are really considerably more prevalent in dogs than food allergies are. On average, only approximately 10 percent of dogs who suffer from allergies really have an allergy to food.
Since the inflammation in their paws causes irritation and discomfort, allergic dogs may gnaw, bite, and lick their paws and nails in an attempt to alleviate the itchiness and pain they experience. In most cases, these dogs will nibble on all four of their paws rather than just one of them. Since the symptoms of allergies tend to worsen with time, a dog’s initial itchiness may be mild, but the canine may experience increasing discomfort as time passes.
Your Puppy Is infested with a Parasite
Insects that live off the blood of other animals, such as fleas or mange mites, may trigger our dogs to bite and chew furiously and continuously. The bites that are left behind by these parasites cause the skin to become red and irritated. Dogs who are infested with fleas or mites will often bite all four of their paws and will typically exhibit redness and itching in other areas of their bodies as well. Itching is another symptom that may be brought on by tick bites. If a tick becomes embedded in your dog’s paw or between their toes, they may lick or chew at the area in an effort to alleviate the itching and remove the tick.
Though it might be difficult to locate these parasites, the fact that you do not see any of them does not suggest that they are not there. Your pet may be tearing its feet apart because they have parasites, and your veterinarian staff may use specialist procedures and testing, such as scraping the skin, to identify whether this is the case.
There Might Be Dermatitis On Your Dog.
Dermatitis is a skin condition that may affect both people and Dogs alike. It’s a skin ailment that makes you feel itchy all the time. It might be brought on by anything from an allergy to germs or any number of other things. If you think your pet may have dermatitis, you should take them to the veterinarian so they can rule out the possibility that it is caused by germs.
If you notice that your dog regularly licks their paws after coming in from the outdoors, you should provide a bucket of water at the entrance so that you may wash its paws off as soon as they come in. In dogs, dermatitis may be brought on by a variety of allergic reactions, including those to the following: Food, Dust, Grass, Trees, Mold, Insects, and Weeds
There is an injury to your dog.
Your dog’s paws may get irritated from a variety of minor injuries, including bee stings, wounds, ripped nails, a blister, a stone or thorn lodged between the pads, and other similar problems. If you notice that your dog is biting or excessively licking one paw in particular, you should examine it to see if there is a little injury or discomfort that might be driving the behavior. It’s possible that you’ll be able to treat the injury with some simple first aid, but if it doesn’t get better or if it’s a more severe injury, you should take your dog to the veterinarian as soon as possible.
To prevent your dog from developing tendencies such as excessive licking and biting of its paws, it is important to take particular care of your dog’s paws and prevent them from being hurt.
- When coming in from the outdoors, you should wipe the paws of your dog.
- Examine their paws to see if there are any unidentified things.
- On days that are particularly hot or cold, consider getting your dog some dog booties.
Your Dog May Have a Trouble With His Health or His Conduct
The act of licking oneself excessively may be an indication of a physical condition or a behavioral issue, such as nervousness or boredom. If you are unable to determine why your dog is excessively licking or biting their paws, you should consult with your dog’s veterinarian. Your veterinarian should be able to assist you in determining what is going on, and if there is a problem with your pet’s health or behavior, they should be able to provide you with advice on how to handle it.
How to Tell Whether Your Dog Is In Bad Shape
If you see your dog licking or chewing at their paws, the first thing you should do is look for visible indicators as to why they are doing this. Discoloration or a rash may appear, letting you know what’s bothering your pet so you can address it with your doctor.
Look for the following issues by checking in between their toes and beneath their paws:
- ticks and fleas.
Other signs of discomfort include limping or immobility, so keep an eye out for these as well.
How to Prevent Your Dog From Chewing on Their Paws
The fact of the matter is that there are some scenarios in which it may be difficult to prevent your dog from chewing on its paws. The treatment itself is ultimately determined by the underlying problem. The following is a list of some of the most prevalent reasons and how each one is treated:
- Allergies: If it’s due to allergies, you’ll require allergy treatment, or at the very least, you’ll need to avoid the allergen. In many cases, environmental allergens are the source of persistent allergy symptoms, which need taking a consistent treatment schedule throughout peak allergy seasons. To rule out the possibility of a food allergy, a food trial using a prescribed allergy food or a diet that consists of a different protein source is required.
- Injuries: If one of your dog’s paws is hurt, it is imperative that you treat the injury as soon and as immediately as possible. First, you should try to treat the damage by washing it with water or saline solution, soap, chlorhexidine, or iodine, and then covering it with a bandage or another kind of clean fabric. Take into consideration the possibility that your dog may need a cone in order to prevent them from picking or chewing at the wounded area.
- Infection: Medication is most likely going to be the most effective kind of therapy in the event of an infection. Your veterinarian will be able to determine whether or not oral or topical antibiotics are required.
- Anxiety: As was noted before, anxiety is a common factor that may lead to dogs biting their paws and other paw-related body parts. If this is the situation with your dog, getting them started on the appropriate course of therapy for anxiety as soon as possible is essential if you want to alleviate their overall symptoms. Both instructions to modify one’s behavior and the use of medication are two of the most popular ways of therapy.
- Other causes: As was discussed in the preceding part of this article, there are a variety of potential explanations for itching paws. Your dog’s veterinarian may recommend anti-inflammatory topical or oral treatments, as well as periodic injections, in order to provide itching relief and reduce inflammation. Antibiotics and antifungal medication may be prescribed for bacterial or yeast infections, respectively, although this would depend on the underlying cause of the sickness.
One Last Thing
It is a good idea to take your dog to the veterinarian to have a professional evaluation done if you want to stop your dog from chewing on its paws. If your dog chews on his or her paws on a regular basis and the behavior does not abate after a few days, it may be an indication of a more serious problem. Given the circumstances surrounding your dog, a veterinarian will be able to advise you on the most appropriate method of treatment.