Have you seen your dog chewing his feet recently? Probably, yes! Seeing our dogs chew or lick their feet is something normal. Sometimes we think that it is not a big deal because it’s one of our dog’s habits. But for a meticulous and overprotective dog owner like me, I always make sure that it is not something serious or harmful to my dog. It is still better to know the underlying causes of his actions. Now, here are some of the reasons I found for dogs chewing their feet.
One of the reasons why our dogs chew their feet is Allergies. Like humans, dogs can also be prone to allergies especially if they are exposed to allergens. They can also get it from the food they eat as well as from insects and flea bites. It usually comes with a runny nose and cough. One of the symptoms of allergies in dogs is itchiness. Hence, our dogs bite their feet in purpose to at least ease the itchiness they feel in that specific area.
Depending on the severity of the allergy, treatments can be done easily. Going to the vet is the first thing to do so our dogs will be diagnosed accordingly. The doctor may prescribe some allergy medications such as Antihistamines (one of the most popular is Benadryl), Apoquel, and Corticosteroids). Otherwise, the avoidance of the things that cause dog allergies as much as possible is the best treatment.
It feels disgusting when our dogs get fleas and ticks even with regular bathing but it is inevitable especially if our dogs go outside our homes. They will most likely acquire these from grasses, dirty places, lands, or in places where other dogs are present. Most of the time, these parasites stay in their paws as they are less visible. These will then cause itchy sensations and our dogs would try to chew these pests out.
These fleas and ticks are annoying. They can even multiply quickly- something that is so troublesome. Oral tablets are the most recommended prevention and treatment of ticks and fleas. They are found to be more effective than powders, sprays, and shampoos.
Saliva contains antibacterial enzymes that can heal wounds. A study by Benjamin L. Hart and Karen L. Powell in 2003, discussed that the application of saliva would reduce the common contaminants of wounds which are the Escherichia coli and Streptococcus canis. Therefore, if we see our dogs chewing their paw, it could be because they have a wound and they are trying to lick or cleanse it with their saliva.
For sure, most of us have seen our dogs licking their wounds. Does it also harm them? The answer is yes. Excessive licking or chewing on the wounded area may reopen the wound that will delay the healing process. It can even cause irritation.. Thus, we should go to our trusted vet for immediate treatment instead.
This is probably the most common situation on why do our dogs chew their foot. Stepping on something small, or sticky that would insert in between their toes annoys them. They will do their best to remove it by chewing their paws. It could be grass, debris, or worst, a thorn.
If the object is not sharp then there’s nothing to worry about. The best thing to do is to help our dog to clear away that foreign body that was stuck into their feet. If the object is sharp like thorns that have caused a wound, then it should be cleaned and disinfected immediately.
It’s rare to see a dog who doesn’t lick himself . But as their owners, we should observe if our dog is licking on the same spot all the time. This could be a sign that something isn’t right. If that happens, we should check our dogs and know the problem. Besides, we should regularly check our dogs’ body parts to see if everything is normal and if we see a problem that can’t treat by ourselves, going to the vet is the best solution. Indeed, keeping our dogs healthy and clean should be our priority.