Why Do Dogs Chew Their Paws
As a dog owner, you may sometimes wonder if a certain behaviour in your dog is normal or not, and it’s great that you do. Even though it’s normal for your dog to lick his paws from time to time, it can be concerning if he starts chewing on them.
Dogs, just like humans, react to what’s bothering them, and when they are chewing their paws, you can be sure something is happening. Your dog may be hurt, or he may be feeling lonely. Whatever the case is, you need to identify and solve the problem, as it can turn into something dangerous for his health.
In general, a dog licking his paws after a day in a park is a normal behaviour. He may try to cool or massage his paws, but sometimes, this can turn into chewing, scratching and it may be happening all the time.
You need to pay close attention to your dog’s paws and look for any bleeding, redness, odours and even limping. Besides an injury which can happen at any time, your dog can also get an infection in his paws if certain bacteria reaches the wound.
Let’s take a look at the reasons behind this behaviour, and what you can do in order to help your pup get over it.
1. Your Dog Is Anxious
If your dog is being alone for too long, he may start showing self-grooming behaviours. This happens because he needs to feel some sort of affection and stimulation. If that doesn’t come from his owner, he will start doing it himself.
Some dogs will chew on their tail, others on their paws, and in the most severe cases, they will badly injure themselves.
If you know your dog is anxious when you leave the house, you should consider hiring a responsible dog sitter to stay with him when you’re gone. This can definitely help them stay calm and happy, and will still be very excited to see you when you come back!
2. His Paws Are Hurt
In general, when a dog’s paws are injured, he will insistently lick it in order to treat and close the wound. It can be anything from a wound or puncture, to fractured claws. If this is the case, you need to closely examine your dog’s paws and contact your veterinarian.
While a wound will be visible, a fracture will be a little harder to spot. Keep an eye on your dog and see if he has any problems walking or running around the house.
As dog’s paws are incredibly sensitive, a simple splinter can cause a very bad infection, so you need to keep an eye open for that.
3. Your Dog Has An Allergy
Just like humans, dogs can get allergies to mould, pollen or insect bites, as well as some chemicals found in cleaning products and foods. If your dog is insistently chewing his paws, you can consider an allergy that’s making his paws itch.
An allergy can become very dangerous for a dog, so you need to be very careful about what you feed him, and take him to the veterinarian immediately if you think this is the case.
In order to avoid any food-based allergies, we recommend you only give your pup natural treats, such as our dried pork rolls, sausages and of course, the range of filled bones when you really want to treat your dog.
Because they are 100% natural, you won’t have to worry about any chemicals your dog may get in contact with!
4. His Paws Are Too Dry
Dogs, just like humans, can get very dry skin. This usually happens during the winter months or very hot summer days when they get dehydrated. Because they can’t apply moisturiser on themselves, the best option is to lick and chew on their paws in order to alleviate that dry skin feeling.
What you can do in this situation, is take some olive or coconut oil and start massaging your dog’s paws. It’s important to address your veterinarian if this persists, as he may be dealing with a fungal infection causing the dryness.
If your dog is chewing on his paws because they are too dry, you need to try to help him however you can, as he can injure himself.
Every strange behaviour your dog shows has a reason, and you need to identify it in order to keep him healthy and happy. If you notice your dog is insistently chewing on his paws for no apparent reason, you should schedule a check-up for him, and your veterinarian will tell you what’s happening and will help you find a solution!