Have you ever chased your dog through your house by following a trail of his muddy paw prints? Does Fido jump into your vehicle after walking through muddy puddles during an outdoor adventure? Dealing with dirty dog paws is a hassle, but learning how to clean dog paws after a walk can help keep the dirt from entering your home.
It sounds simple, but a quick wipe down won't remove all of the debris trapped between the pads of your dog's feet. You don't need to buy a commercial paw washer to keep your dog's feet clean. Although, these products do make the task much easier.
Paw washers often look like giant coffee mugs with a lid. The lid has a hole lined with bristles. While they may clean your dog's paws quickly and effectively, some pets will be afraid of sticking their feet inside a paw washer.
These products are fairly inexpensive, but they aren't a necessity. If you're looking for a cheaper way to clean your pup's paws, the task can be easily done with a couple of common household items.
How to Clean Dog Paws After a Walk
A quick wipe down will get a lot of the dirt off of your pet's paws, but it will leave behind any mud or debris stuck underneath the nails or between the pads. If you really want to get Fido's feet clean, you need to take the time to wipe them down thoroughly and get into all the nooks and crannies.
Dog's walk on all types of terrain in every kind of weather. Their paws collect dirt, tree sap, small rocks, chemicals, dirty water and all sorts of other things. Paws get dirty, even in the driest climates. And, it's your responsibility as a pet owner to make sure those paws get clean.
Cleaning your dog's paws won't just keep your home and vehicle clean, it will also keep your dog safe. When your dog comes in from outside, he will probably lie down to lick his paws clean himself. If there are chemicals or toxic substances on his paws, he'll end up ingesting them. Even if he doesn't end up ingesting them, these substances can do damage to the pads of your pet's feet.
How to Clean Dog Paws
Dog grooming wipes are a great tool to have on hand for dirty paws. I keep a package at home and one in each of our vehicles. Just be sure to buy high-quality wipes that won't shred apart when wiping rough paw pads and getting in underneath dog toenails.
If you don't have grooming wipes on hand, you can also use a small towel to wipe off the paws and remove debris from between the pads. If Fido's paws are extremely dirty, you may need to give them a full wash with running water.
In the summer, you can rinse the paws with a garden hose and dry them with a towel. If it's too cold to wash your dog's paws outside, give them a good wipe down before bringing your pooch inside. Bring him straight to the bathtub and give his paws/legs a thorough washing.
Preventing Dirty Paws
I recommend keeping the hair around the paws and between the pads of the paws trimmed short at all times. If you're interested in learning how to trim paw hair, you can watch my video guide here. If you don't trim the hair around your dog's feet, tree sap, ice and other debris can get stuck in the hair and cause your pet a lot of pain.
Outfitting your canine companion with a pair of booties will ensure that his paws stay clean at all times. Be sure to invest in a pair of waterproof, or his paws will still end up soggy.
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