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Paw pads are the tough, spongy undersides of your dog’s paw. They provide padding and insulation to your furry friend’s paws. When you take her out in harsh conditions, such as extreme heat or a particularly rocky path, the pads will prevent any serious injury to her paws. Summer is perhaps the harshest season for your dog. When you take her for a walk, the heat on the roads can cause severe burns on her paws. The burn will destroy the top layer of her skin on the paw and put her in a considerable amount of pain. You can treat paw pad burns at home, but if the burn is quite serious, take her to the vet immediately.
How do you diagnose a paw pad burn?
The simplest way to know of a pad burn is if you have seen her walking on a hot surface. She may not show any discomfort initially, but as the pain progresses, she will. If she is limping, has redness, is holding up her paw, has blisters, or is refusing to walk, check for pad burns. She may even lick her paws more frequently to relieve the pain.
Treating paw pad burns.
It is important that you treat pad burns as soon as you notice the indicators. Follow the steps below to heal the burns and prevent any infection.
- Clean the burn – Before you start any treatment, clean the wound with an antibacterial soap. Remove any debris that you find and thoroughly wash the injured area.
- Check for bleeding – Gently apply pressure under the paw burn to see if there is any bleeding. In case of a bleed, maintain pressure on the cut till it stops, and wash her paws afterward. Small cuts can be treated at home. For larger and much deeper cuts, take her to the vet.
- Soak her paws – Put her paws in cold water for about ten minutes. This should cause immense relief and ease her pain. If she does not like it, use a cold compress on the area at regular intervals.
- Use an antiseptic spray or ointment – To prevent infection, apply an antiseptic cream to the burned area.
- Wrap the paw in a bandage – Roll a bandage around the paw to prevent the ointment from rubbing off. Use the “figure 8” pattern to fasten the bandage.
- Take her to the vet – No matter how small the burn, you should take her to the vet and ensure the injury is not serious. The vet may prescribe a better ointment or pills for pain relief.
You can prevent further paw pad burns by following a few preventive measures. Taking your dog for walks in mild weather, on grassy surfaces, and moisturizing her paws after every walk can keep them safe and healthy.
Frequently Asked Questions
What to do if your dog burns his paw pads?
Burns to a dog's paw pads can be painful and uncomfortable, and it's important to take immediate steps to help your dog feel better and prevent further damage. Use cool (not cold) water to flush the burned area for 10-15 minutes. This will help reduce the heat and pain. After cooling, gently pat the paw dry with a clean towel. If the burn appears severe or swelling or blistering, it's best to take your dog to the veterinarian for treatment. They can assess the extent of the damage and provide appropriate treatment. If the burn appears minor, you can apply a soothing ointment like aloe vera or petroleum jelly to help protect the paw and reduce discomfort. Be sure to avoid any ointments that contain alcohol or other harmful ingredients. If your dog doesn't leave the affected paw alone, you can cover it with a clean, breathable wrap or bootie to help protect the area and prevent further damage. Keep a close eye on your dog and watch for any signs of infection or worsening of the burn. If you notice any redness, discharge, or foul smell, seek veterinary care. Avoid walking your dog on hot pavement or other surfaces to prevent further burns, especially during the hottest parts of the day. Consider using paw protection products like booties or paw wax to help protect your dog's paw pads.
What does paw burn look like?
Burns on a dog's paw pads can vary in appearance depending on the severity of the burn. The paw pad may appear reddish in color, especially around the edges of the pad. The paw pad may become swollen, making it difficult for your dog to walk or put weight on the affected paw. In more severe cases, blisters may form on the paw pad. These can be painful and may even rupture, causing further damage. As the burn begins to heal, the paw pad may start to peel or crack, exposing sensitive tissue underneath. If your dog is limping or favoring one paw over another, it may be a sign that he has a paw burn. If you suspect that your dog has a paw burn, it's important to take action quickly to help your dog feel better and prevent further damage. If the burn appears severe or if your dog is showing signs of pain or discomfort, it's best to seek veterinary care as soon as possible.
How long does it take for burnt paw pads to heal?
The time it takes for burnt paw pads to heal can vary depending on the severity of the burn. In general, minor burns can take 7-10 days to heal, while more severe burns can take several weeks or longer. During the healing process, it's important to keep the affected paw clean and dry and protect it from further damage. You may need to limit your dog's activity or keep him from walking on hard surfaces until the paw has fully healed. If your dog has a minor burn, you can help promote healing by applying a soothing ointment like aloe vera or petroleum jelly to the affected area. Be sure to avoid any ointments that contain alcohol or other harmful ingredients. If your dog has a more severe burn, or if the burn does not seem to be healing, it's important to seek veterinary care. Your vet can assess the extent of the damage and provide appropriate treatment, such as antibiotics or pain medication, to help your dog feel better and heal more quickly.
Will a dog's paw pad heal on its own?
If the burn is minor and there is no visible damage to the paw pad, it's possible that the paw pad may heal on its own within a few days to a week. However, during the healing process, it's important to keep the paw clean and dry and to protect it from further damage. If the burn is more severe, with visible signs of blistering or peeling of the paw pad, it's important to seek veterinary attention. Your vet may prescribe medication or ointments to help promote healing and may recommend limiting your dog's activity or keeping him from walking on hard surfaces until the paw has fully healed.
Do dogs' paws burn easily?
Yes, dogs' paws can burn easily, especially during hot weather or when walking on hot surfaces like pavement or sand. Dogs' paw pads are sensitive and can be easily damaged by heat, causing burns or blisters that can be painful and uncomfortable. It's important to be mindful of the temperature of the ground when walking your dog, especially during the hottest parts of the day. Hot pavement or sand can quickly heat up and cause burns to your dog's paw pads, so it's best to avoid walking your dog on these surfaces when they are too hot. Additionally, some dogs may be more susceptible to paw pad burns than others, such as dogs with thin or light-colored fur. In these cases, it may be helpful to use paw protection products like booties or paw wax to help prevent burns and protect the paw pads from damage.