How to Treat Dog Foot, Leg and Paw Pad Injuries
How to Heal a Dog's Injured Paw Pad
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Find out how to clean and care for your dog's foot injury. A dog's paw pads are prone to injury from glass, hot pavement and healing can be difficult due to the paw pad's exposure to bacteria and pressure from standing on the injured foot. Jumping, running, falls and even play can lead to leg injuries, and improper treatment following an injury can lead to an even more serious situation.
Follow these easy vet-recommended steps and your dog's injured paw will be healed in no time!
Canine Foot, Leg and Paw Injury Links - Learn More on How Injuries Occur and How to Help and Injured Dog
Visit The Sick Dog Blog for in-depth information on symptoms of dog illnesses, treatments, and how to help your sick or injured pet.
Check out these links for more on canine foot injuries, paw pad injuries and leg injuries.
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Does your dog have a foot injury? Learn how to treat your pet at home and promote healing, until you can visit the vet.
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Does your dog have a leg injury? Learn how to treat your pet at home and promote healing, until you can visit the vet.
Canine Paw Pad Injury Treatment
How to clean, bandage and treat a dog's injured paw or foot at home.
dog's paw pad is prone to injury, and paw pad injuries can be difficult to heal, but follow these tips and your injured dog will be well on his way to recovery.
Competitive Musher Edward Long offered these tips for pet owners who have a dog with an injured foot.
1. Start by cleaning and removing any debris from the paw pad. Soak the dog's foot in warm water for 15 minutes. Add Epsom salts to help soften the skin, cleanse the dog's injured paw, and rinse away bacteria and debris.
2. Swish the dog's foot through the water to painlessly dislodge debris.
3. After the dog's foot soaks for 15 minutes, use an anti-bacterial soap like Dial to wash the dog's paw pad. Thoroughly wash and rinse the foot.
4. Use paper towels to pat dry.
5. The dog's paw should be examined for any embedded debris, like glass. Use tweezers to gently remove any debris, or visit your vet for further assistance.
6. Disinfect the paw pad injury with Betadine. Pour the Betadine directly onto the wound or use a sterile gauze pad to dab generous amounts of betadine onto the paw injury.
7. Allow the Betadine to air dry.
8. Apply a dab of antibiotic ointment onto the wound to help promote healing.
9. Bandage the foot using rolled gauze. Bandaging is not common practice for pets, but the foot is the exception since it's exposed to all sorts of bacteria and dirt. Wrap the gauze around the foot and ankle in a "figure 8."
10. Cover the gauze with a self-adhering Ace Bandage. This will make for a more durable bandage suitable for walking.
11. When the dog goes outside, cover the bandaged paw with a plastic bag or sock, with the bag or sock secured around the ankle with tape. This will keep the bandage clean.
If the dog bites at the bandage, get an Elizabethan Collar (also known as an "e-collar" or "lampshade collar") from your vet's office or from major pet supply stores like Petco.
Wash, disinfect, dress and wrap the dog's foot wound twice daily until healed.
If you see any signs of infection, like increased redness, swelling or discharge, visit the vet for an exam. It's likely that your vet will prescribe oral antibiotics.
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Dog Nail Injuries
How to help a dog with a broken or injured nail.
dog will a broken or cracked toenail will often experience excruciating pain, limping and significant bleeding.
In some instances, the vet will need to administer general anesthesia to de-shell or trim back the damaged portion of nail, otherwise proper healing will not occur.
Dr. Michael Levine, DVM, offered these tips for treating a nail injury at home.
If a dog's toenail appears to be damaged, trim the dog's nail as much as possible and use caution to avoid the live portion of the nail, also known as the quick.
Stop bleeding by applying styptic powder, or in a pinch, use cornstarch or even flour to help promote clotting.
Once the bleeding is stopped, the foot must be washed with an anti-bacterial soap like Dial, and then disinfected using Betadine.
Next, apply a dab of antibiotic ointment. The dog's injured nail must be cleaned, disinfected and dressed twice daily until healed.
Conclude by wrapping the foot and ankle in rolled gauze using a "figure 8" pattern. And then use a self-adhering Ace bandage to wrap over the gauze, as this will enable the dog to walk on the foot.
Oral antibiotics and veterinary attention are often required for proper healing of canine nail injuries.
How Did Your Dog Injure His Leg, Paw or Foot?
First Aid for a Pet's Foot Injury
How to Treat Your Dog's Injured Foot & Help Prevent Secondary Injury.
eg and foot injuries are among the most common traumatic injuries in dogs and administering proper first aid will help prevent further damage until you can get to the vet.
In many cases involving a dog with an injured paw, foot or leg, additional damage occurs after the initial trauma, making for more pain and longer recovery.
According to Dr. Michael Levine, DVM, it doesn't take much to injure a dog's foot. Normal activities like running and playing can result in cuts, sprains, torn ligaments and even broken bones.
Pet owners should always seek veterinary attention for a leg or foot injury, but administering proper first aid at home will help in the meantime.
Begin by visually examining the foot, looking for any wounds, nail breakage, swelling or other abnormalities. If nail damage is present, trim the excess portion of nail, wash the area, disinfect before proceeding.
If the dog's nails appear to be in good condition, or once you've stopped the bleeding in the case of a dog with a damaged nail, the next step is to examine the rest of the toes and paw. Check between toes for debris and slowly manipulate each toe and the foot joints, checking for evidence of pain, swelling and discomfort.
In the even that a joint is misaligned, this can indicate fracture or dislocation. Do not try to re-align the joint; instead, splint the foot and seek immediate veterinary attention.
If there is a wound (or in the case of a broken nail involving bleeding) foot must be washed with an anti-bacterial soap like Dial. Then, remove any embedded debris with tweezers. Then, disinfect the wound site using Betadine. Antibiotic ointment can then be applied to any wounds.
The foot should then be wrapped with rolled gauze if a wound or broken nail is present. This cleaning, disinfecting and dressing process must be repeated twice daily until the dog is brought to the vet or until the injury heals.
If broken bones are suspect, splint the foot and ankle with coat hanger wire and gauze or an Ace bandage. Mold the coat hanger to the natural shape of the leg/foot and wrap around the leg and foot. Once complete, the foot should be immobilized, which will prevent further injury.
To help limit swelling and pain, apply ice compresses for 20 minute increments, several times a day.
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