Friday, January 21, 2005
A while back I asked the SCL list what to do about cracked paw pads. Below is a compilation of answers I received. Thanks to all who responded!
- Clean the pad with peroxide and dry it with a hair dryer. Then apply a good triple antibiotic ointment, some gauze and a strong bootie. The bootie will help the cut heal very quickly. You may want to tap it on for a day or so. Change the gauze/bootie twice a day and as the wound heals, once a day.
The old native way my grandma taught me was to collect spruce pitch, put it in a tin cup, and put the tin cup in some water to boil. When the pitch has melted you can spread it on the wound and put the gauze and bootie on there. I have used both and the native way worked really fast.
To make soft feet tough she made black tea and put it in a baggy then put it on the foot, taped it on and then put a bootie on. 2 hours a day. The tanins made the pads flexible but tough.
- Your dog will need to be laid off until the foot heals. The big thing for healing is to keep it clean and dry. If it's a wound or really deep crack, don't use ointments, rather soak the foot once or twice a day. If you can bring the dog indoors, the foot will heal faster than if she stays outside, even just being in at night would help. Once the foot heals, she should wear a bootie on that foot, when she runs, for the rest of the season. If this is not a wound from a fight, etc, you might check her thyroid; it's fairly common in low thyroid dogs for an entire paw pad to "fall" off.
An easy way to soak a foot: You will need a bootie, a plastic sandwich bag, betadine, & warm water. Place a few drops of betadine in the sandwich bag & add a tiny bit of water (1-2 tablespoons). Put the bag on the dog's foot, & put the bootie over paw + bag. Leave it on for 10-15 minutes. This is best done indoors, where you can keep an eye on the dog. When you remove the bootie, blot the foot with paper towels; don't let the dog outside until the foot is dry.