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Excessive Paw Licking
  • utnairbutnairb
    Posts: 35
    Nobu is excessively licking his paws. All four of his paws are red and we can see spots of exposed skin. On our first visit to the vet we received a powder for his paws, but the powder causes him to have diarrhea. Then the vet prescribed some antibiotics and it seemed to help but he's at it again. The vet is thinking that he may be developing an allergic reaction to either the pollen or his food. From the food standpoint, we switched him over from Orijen puppy to Orijen Fish. We always wash his paws after his walks. Still no luck. We also tried using betagen topical spray and an E-collar. Somehow he still manages to get to his paws with the collar on. Has anyone ever dealt with this issue? If so, how did you treat this condition. Another interesting note, Delilah, Nobu's litter mate is going through the same thing. Could it be a genetic issue from the parents? I'm all for any suggestions right now.
    Post edited by sunyata at 2012-08-09 10:35:40
  • ShikokuSpiritShikokuSpirit
    Posts: 1426
    Well, it definitely sounds like an allergy. I had a German Shepherd who had "itchy" skin. She would lick and chew on her arms, it was pretty bad. She lost her fur around her arms and I believe some on her legs. A littermate of hers also had this problem. I took my girl to the vet to get an injection and then she was put on antibiotics. Which helped. I also gave her a bath with a shampoo that was specific for dogs with itchy skin. Then I used "Miracle Coat" to help condition and perhaps ease all the itchiness. <--- I know it's his feet, but you could try this anyways. I've also heard something about oatmeal treatment but have never used this method myself.<br />
    You're best bet is to stick with the antibiotics. The switch to a fish based diet was a good choice. Monitor him and see how he does. Perhaps try switching to another brand's fish based diet (if Orijen Fish doesn't work out). I feed Wellness Core Ocean & Taste of the Wild Fish and my dogs are doing well on it. Are you feeding just strictly kibble? I would recommend trying to introduce some canned "wet" food into his diet. At least until the antibiotics fully kick in. I really would highly recommend fresh & raw foods, if at all possible in your situation.

    Hmmm...if you can keep them on him somehow, you can try some heavy duty doggie booties. Also, try distracting him with a kong filled with yummys, frozen treats or smoked meaty ribeye dog bones (please stay away from rawhide). Hopefully these things will be more appealing and he'll "forget" about his feet.
    - Corina A. Gonzalez | Lynxiene (Belgian Malinois), Shoushuu, Kotomi & Shuran (Shikoku Ken). | Along with a Clan of cats!
  • StaticNfuzzStaticNfuzz
    Posts: 1814
    Yes it does sound like allergies. It is good you are getting Nobu on better food. Some dog's genetics have a propensity for allergies. It could be inhalation allergies and in that case antibiotics will not be the final solution.

    As far as the vet. Did he say why he put the dog on antibiotics? Are there open lesions or infection?? Booties won't help nor will wrapping the feet. When allergies hit Instead of runny noses like we humans get when irritated the sensor receptors activate on dogs paws, chin, face and eyes. Covering up does not change a thing so I would not aggravate the dog further buy putting clothes on him.

    We have experienced allergies with more than one Shiba. Treatment varies for each and their make up.
    To begin with I would get unsented baby wipes and wipe your pups face and body when coming in from outside. For the wounds and marks on the feet I would get clorhexiderm flush and go over his paws once a day.

    You can also bathe once a week in oatmeal shampoo. I don't know how old your pup is but for adult dogs and pups 8 months and older (18 lbs and above) you can give 1/4 tab of benedryl to see if that reduces itching. In high pollen season do not keep your pup outside for long duration and inside you can set up a hepa filter to help reduce dust and pollen spores.

    I would seriously consider getting your pup to a veterinary dermatologist to get on a good plan. The average vet generalist is not really good at treating allergies and the complexity of treatments and available options. There are several things in combination that can be used to reduce flairs. A good specialist can help you get your dog back to normal more quickly. Allergies are life long and they do not go away usually on their own. The may reduce depending on the season but are always in the immuno background of the dog. If you can prepare each season you usually you can keep the at a level where you would never know he has a problem. Here is a link to the American College of Veterinary Dermatology to help you find a doctor.

    Post edited by StaticNfuzz at 2009-05-07 14:20:32
  • I have lost my 10 years old shiba with lymphoma. I suspect that nearby golf course herbicide may have caused. Now I have a new puppy 7 months old but I would never go near it. I also want to wash his paws each time after the walk. Does anyone have good idea how to wipe or wash their paws ???
  • sunyatasunyata
    Posts: 8589
    @knaoko - Unscented baby wipes or a white vinegar/water spritz usually does the trick.
    Bella 2Mountains 2Nola 2
    Casey, with Bella and Nola, hanging out in the mountains of Virginia.
    I Wander, I Ride
  • @knaoko-I am so sorry for the loss of your shiba.
  • @Knaoko - We take our shoes off inside the house, so we always whipe Ponyo's feet off with unscented baby wipes. Sorry for your loss!
  • I am not an expert but excessive paw licking can be a sign of increased anxiety.

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