Dog First Aid: How to Address Paw Injuries
It's heartbreaking to see your dog get hurt, especially when it's an injury to one of its paws. Paw injuries can range from something as simple as a thorn prick to a worse issue like an infection. It's important to know the difference between these types of injuries so that you can ensure your pup gets the appropriate treatment.
Watch your dog's behavior
If you notice your dog is limping or favoring one paw in particular, take action as soon as possible to avoid long-term damage. If they have an injury on their leg or foot, they may need surgery to fix it. Your vet will also want to keep the dog for a few days for observation so that he can make sure there aren't any other complications with his health before sending him home again with you and your family.
If your dog has an injury to their leg or foot, it may need surgery. This will be determined by your vet. If they are in pain and need to have a procedure done on their leg, it's best that you don't try to give them any type of pain relief yourself.
Take your dog's temperature to see if they have a fever or infection
If your dog has a paw injury and is acting lethargic, take their temperature. You can do this by using a rectal thermometer, but if you don't have one of those handy, use a digital ear thermometer instead. If you don't have either of those things on hand (or if your dog won't cooperate), try using a human thermometer instead! Just follow the directions on whichever type of thermometer you're using--and don't forget to dip it into some hydrogen peroxide before taking the reading!
If their temperature is above 100 degrees Fahrenheit (37 degrees Celsius), give them some Tylenol to help bring down their fever while also treating their wounds with antibiotic ointment as described above.
Wash the wound with soap and water
- Wash the wound with soap and water, then apply hydrogen peroxide to kill bacteria in the wound.
- If you don't have hydrogen peroxide, use a mild antibacterial soap to wash away debris and other material from your dog's paw pad. Be sure to rinse it well so none of the soap remains on its skin when you're done cleaning up his foot!
- Apply an antibiotic ointment over the wound area (if possible) or simply apply some gauze pads soaked with warm water as a substitute; this will help keep dirt out while also keeping things clean during healing time! Try not letting your pup run around outside barefoot until these areas are healed--that way nothing gets stuck inside them again when they do come back into contact with grass or dirt later down the line."
Apply an antibiotic ointment over the wound area
The ointment should be applied to help prevent infection and promote healing, as well as provide pain relief. If your dog has a fever or infection, you should seek medical attention immediately. You should also consider taking your dog to a veterinarian if the wound is very large or deep, or if he has been vomiting.
If your dog does not have a fever or infection, you should apply an antibiotic ointment to the wound. The ointment should be applied to help prevent infection and promote healing, as well as provide pain relief. If your dog has a fever or infection, you should seek medical attention immediately.
Apply a sterile bandage over the ointment
Once you've applied the ointment, cover the paw with an elastic bandage. You can use either a sterile gauze pad or a clean cotton cloth and then wrap it around the paw. Make sure that the dog doesn't chew off or dislodge this covering, as it will need to stay on for several days until the wound is fully healed. It's best to change out both the bandage and ointment at least once daily so that they remain clean and protected from dirt and germs while healing occurs. If you notice any signs of infection, such as redness around where you applied your treatment--or if pus starts coming out from under your dressing--you should call your veterinarian immediately!
If you notice your dog is limping or favoring one paw in particular, take action as soon as possible to avoid long-term damage
Paw injuries can be serious and even lead to infection and amputation if they're not treated immediately. If your dog has sustained a paw injury, bring them to the vet immediately; there are a variety of ways dogs can injure their paws:
- Small cuts and scrapes from running outside on rough terrain
- Cuts from broken glass or nails (especially if they've been digging)
If you notice your dog is limping or favoring one paw in particular, take action as soon as possible to avoid long-term damage. The best thing you can do for them is get them to the vet for treatment. Don't try to treat it yourself if you're not sure what's wrong--you could make things worse!
The best way to clean a dog cut is with mild soap and water. If your dog’s cut is very dirty or deep, you may also want to use an antiseptic scrub as well. If he has an open wound, make sure it is covered by applying gauze or a bandage before cleaning his injury.