Irritated Dog Paw With Limp

by Susie
(Covington ga)

My dog is limping and licking his paw. the skin around the pads has a reddish dark red raised area surrounded by normal looking skin. What are possible causes of the problem?

Possible Causes of Dog Limping and Licking the Paw

Hi Susie,

Sorry to hear about your dog's paw and liming problem.

A limping dog with signs of paw irritation, especially with localized redness around the pads, can be concerning. Here's a list of potential causes to discuss with your veterinarian:

Foreign Body: Something could be embedded in or between the pads, like a thorn, small stone, or piece of glass.

Contact Dermatitis: This is a skin reaction caused by coming in contact with certain allergens or irritants, such as certain plants, chemicals, or even ice melt products.

Trauma: Simple injuries, like cuts or scrapes, can cause discomfort. Dogs can sustain these injuries from rough terrain or sharp objects.

Infection: Bacterial or fungal (yeast) infections can sometimes occur, leading to redness and irritation.

Parasites: Fleas or mites can cause irritation, though they typically affect more than just the paws.

Pododermatitis: This is a general term for skin inflammation of the paws, and it can be caused by a variety of factors, including allergies, infections, or immune-mediated disorders.

Burns: Walking on hot surfaces like asphalt in summer can cause burns on the pads.

Tumors or Growths: Less common, but any unusual growth or lump should be evaluated.

Given the symptoms:

Examine the Paw: Look between the pads and nails for any foreign bodies or obvious injuries.

Clean the Area: Gently wash the paw with mild soap and water, then rinse and pat dry.

Limit Licking: Prevent excessive licking as it can exacerbate the problem. Consider using an E-collar or protective bootie temporarily.

You'll need to consult with your veterinarian for a definitive diagnosis and treatment recommendation. Persistent limping, swelling, discharge, or worsening of the condition warrants an immediate vet visit.

Please keep us up to date on your dog's condition.

Editor and Publisher
Dog Health Guide

Please note: This information is intended to complement, not replace, the advice of your pet's veterinarian. Always consult a vet for professional medical advice about your pet's health.

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