Grooming is an important part of caring for and bonding with your furry friend. And an essential but sometimes overlooked aspect of grooming is taking good care of the sensitive paws.
Let’s go over some paw care basics!
Proper Dog Paw Pad Care
Caring for dog paw pads is important for the same reason that caring for your own feet is important.
Our furry friends walk on their paws all day every day, and any damage, calluses or blistering on the paw pads would make that painful. Additionally, dog paw pads provide fatty insulation for shock absorption and extra warmth in the winter.
Caring for dog paws starts with regularly checking the paw pads for injuries, calluses, or any debris or other foreign object stuck in the toes. Check specifically for swelling or signs of pain in reaction to touch. Make paw checks a habit by adding them to your brushing routine and also checking after long walks.
Keep the delicate paw pads clean and healthy by regularly trimming the fur that grows between the toes to keep those toes free of painful tangles or matting. Add this as part of routine nail trimming, which is essential for healthy paws.
Caring for Cat Paws
Feline friends also need lots of TLC for their paws! They use those paws to walk around lots of dirty surfaces, including their litter box. And outdoor cats encounter even more exposure to dirt, in addition to rough terrain and hot or cold surfaces.
So, like with dogs, it’s important to regularly check kitty’s paws for dirt, matted fur and signs of injury. Many cats don’t like having their paws handled right off the bat, so it’s important to get your feline friend used to having her paws touched by gently massaging them when you’re petting or cuddling your cat.
While you’re checking the paws, remove any debris or splinters with tweezers, and use a soft cloth to wipe the paw pads, toe beans and between the toes. Use small nail scissors to trim the cats claws as needed, being sure to avoid the sensitive quick.
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