Dogs are the loyal creatures. They are the only living creatures that love their masters more than they love themselves. Hence, it becomes the prime duty of the masters to take care of their dogs. Sometimes the masters or the owners become worried when they see their dog continuously licking their paws. However, to the experts, it does not matter to worry. Licking paws is sometimes the common behaviour or the nature that can be observed in almost all animals. Although the exact time when an animal will lick their paw is still unknown.
Although, licking paws is a matter of concern at times. In some of the cases, the dogs will gently but insistently lick one or both paws. However, in cases of other canines, they sometimes lick their paws so hard that it seems that they would chew their toes.
How can it happen?
Yeah! You all heard right. Even the licking and chewing can be genetic. It is a possibility that the pet’s parents or their siblings share the same problem. It is more or less like a family trait. According to the veterinary doctor, this problem is seen especially seen in the dogs in the second year. It is sometimes the teething that can compel the dog to chew their paws when they have nothing near them.
To identify such dogs, it is more or less like the dogs that begin a little late in life responds to the environment, the lifestyle and the dietary adjustments.
Licking the paws sometimes becomes a matter of concern for the owners. Sometimes, excessive licking needs extreme care. Therefore, the owners of the dogs are asked to take immense care of their pets when they see their pets are constantly licking their paws. Also, they should immediately consult a good veterinary regarding this, especially when the pet develops this habit all of a sudden and the habit remains for a long period. Sometimes, this continuous licking is accompanied by swelling, redness, odour, bleeding, limping or other possibilities of infection and pain.
Since almost all dogs or canines are engaged in such activity occasionally for any reasons while others are prone to the infestation of lick. So they continuously chew their feet excessively. The major sign to make out or figure that the dog is continuously licking or chewing is the presence of soreness or the appearance of light pink or rusty colour. This colour is more prominent in the light colored dogs and is caused due to the chronic contact of saliva or the porphyrin pigments found in the saliva.
Causes of Sudden Licking and Chewing
Any abnormalities in the behaviour of the dog are easily judged. So is in the case of sudden licking or chewing of the paws by the dogs. Though the exact reason needs to seek out, the possible reasons are-
- Presence of punctured wounds in the toes or paw pads
- Fractured claws or toes
- Sudden burn
- Some special cases like in the Greyhounds, appearance of corns
- Presence of foreign particles between the toes like the ticks, burrs and the grass awns
Apart from all these possible reasons, dogs or the canines involve in the licking of the toes because of some other reasons like-
- Appearance of inter digital cysts
- Presence of inter digital tumors or other cancers
- Sudden appearance of allergy especially of the skin
- Autoimmune diseases of the nail beds or the paw pads
The severity of the chewing or licking must be marked followed by proper treatment. A second lot of the above enlisted possibilities should never be neglected and need immediate treatment.
Chronic Licking or Chewing- Causes
A long-term chewing or licking can lead to chronic licking or chewing of the paws or the claws. According to an expert veterinary doctor, the possibility of licking or chewing becoming a chronic one is mainly because of the appearance of sudden severe allergic skin disease. It is the most common reason behind the canines’ habit of licking or chewing their toes or claws.
The reason behind the skin allergy is because of the food allergy. It must always be taken care that the pets need not be given anything to eat. They have a certain dietary restriction from nature. And going beyond nature faces tremendous consequences for sure. Other pathogens responsible for the soreness are the secondary infections being carried by the micro-organisms like the yeast or the bacteria. Their presence certainly worsens the natural behaviour of the dogs or the canines.
To some of them, licking or chewing toes or claws is a habit. They have been continuously doing this for years. According to the animal psychologists, for such dogs, it feels good to them like many people chew away their nails. But, this does not mean that the habit is to be left untreated. This non-behavioural disease, which can be in the initial stage or has given birth to an obsessive behaviour. Like for example, the dogs with a wound that has been caused because of the continuous licking- might have initially attracted the germs to the area. One cannot ignore the fact that an injury, simple itch or a reaction to an allergen might have triggered the behaviour or habit of continuous toe licking.
To certain breeds, it is a part of their suffering. These breeds seem to suffer from paw or toe problems now and then. Like the breeds Golden Retriever, poodles, Chihuahuas, they have toe problem, and they suffer toe problem. While the breeds like the white or the blond-haired breeds have the lesser chances of paw infection or infestation. For the furry dogs, the continuous licking or chewing of their toes or paws lead to discoloration of the area and hence becomes more distinct.
Sometimes it is a part of the nature of the dog breed. The breeds that either work hard or are prone to stress relieve their stress through over grooming or paw licking. However, the specialist says that any breed can develop the problem of paw licking.
Irrespective of the causes, if a dog is seen developing the habit of chewing or licking toes, then it should never be neglected, and immense care and proper treatment should be carried out to ensure complete recovery. Everything needs to be done under a strict supervision of experienced veterinary doctors. The doctor also says that the owner of the dog must never panic because most of the cases are curable, except those who have turned chronic due to negligence. Visit this site for more information.