For most dogs, licking their paws is an active self-grooming mechanism. However, if this happens very often, there might be some underlying causes that need to be probed. Taking care of a dog is no joke at all.
There are many responsibilities that you need to fulfill from time to time when it comes to being a pet parent. One of the most important things that I have realized as a dog owner myself is that you have to be extremely cautious about your dog’s behavior.
It is vital to note what is normal and what is not from time to time. When it comes to your dog licking its paws, various reasons could lead to the circumstance. From skin infection to allergies, there can be many reasons behind this behavior. However, it is most important to understand how to stop dogs from licking paws.
Do you have a specific question about a dog licking its paws? Then use the table of contents below to jump to the most relevant section. And you can always go back by clicking on the black arrow in the right bottom corner of the page. Also, please note that some of the links in this article may be affiliate links. For more details, check the Disclosure section at the bottom of the page.
My dog licking paws a lot. Is it dangerous?
In general, dog licking paw is a very normal activity. You will generally see your dog licking the paws after coming home from outside. They do it as part of their self-grooming ritual. For example, if they walk on the sandy or dirty ground, they lick their paws to restore hygiene.
However, if you notice that the dog paw licking is happening rather frequently and incessantly, it might indicate a problem. You might also start seeing them chewing their paws along with licking them as well. Now, you need to distinguish when the paw licking becomes too excessive.
This is why you should be mindful of your dog’s behavior from the get-go.
Some other things that might be worth observing are whether the paw licking begins suddenly or has progressed gradually. Whether there are any signs of swelling or blood loss or causing any difficulties in the way your dog walks.
In case of any such abnormalities, it is always best to take your dog to the vet’s office as soon as possible. There are ways to eradicate the problem, but getting the proper diagnosis is even more important.
What does it mean when a dog licks its paws?
Before you venture out to find out how to keep the dog from licking pawa, it is crucial to get the correct diagnosis for the dog excessive licking paws. Here are some of the most common ways of interpreting what dog paw licking means:
Your dog is injured
If the paw licking starts abruptly and is mainly focused on one leg, it might indicate an injury. Your dog might have stepped into something sharp, or it may have been caused by toenail growth or something else. In such a case, the dog resorts to licking its paw as a way to soothe itself.
Your dog is suffering from food allergies and gastrointestinal issues
Food allergies often result in dogs excessive licking paws. Although these issues are varied from one dog to another, it is vital to keep the dietary regulations in check. You might also want to look into any gastrointestinal issues as they have been implicated in dog licking paws a lot.
Your dog is suffering from pain or infection
Some dogs experiencing pain because of some other conditions such as arthritis may lick their paw to deal with the pain. Even if the pain is somewhere else, a dog licking paw might be observed. In case of an infection such as Pododermatitis, the paw’s skin becomes inflamed. It leads to discomfort and paw licking behavior.
Your dog has some behavioral or mental health-related issues
In some cases, dog paw licking might also suggest a behavioral or mental health-related issue such as anxiety or boredom. In fact, sometimes, dog obsessive licking paws may also be observed. Anxiety or fear often leads to such behavior as well.
How to get dog to stop licking paws?
If you are wondering how to stop dog from licking paws, there are some natural remedies that you can find from this video.
There are also dog socks to prevent licking available in the market, allowing an obstruction. In fact, there are also training techniques that you can try out to stop a dog from licking paws. The key is to be patient when you want to help your dog chewing or licking its paws. Make sure to take your pet to the doctor immediately if you see any abnormalities in its behavior.
In most cases, it is best to rely on your instincts when caring for your dog. If you notice any dog obsessive licking paws, it is best to treat your beloved pet immediately. Any change in the dog’s behavior is generally indicative of some discomfort or pain that has to be addressed immediately.
Thanks for the blog graphics: Canva.com
Doghint.com is a participant of several affiliate programs. The list includes (but not limited to) the following: VigLink, Refersion, ShareASale, and Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a mean for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. Doghint.com does not intend to provide veterinary advice. All published articles are meant for informational purposes only and not substitute the professional veterinary consultation.