There are a number of things you can do for rough, dry or cracked dog paw pads, and home remedies are also available.
In the guide below, we’ve listed 5 simple home remedies you can explore if you are looking to either add moisture back to, or soften and nourish your dog’s paws and paw pads (if they are looking more rough or dry than normal).
These remedies include coconut oil, vaseline, as well as health based remedies and the surface your dog is walking or running around on.
Let’s take a look at the home remedies!
(NOTE: this is a general information guide only, and is not professional advice, or a substitute for professional advice. A qualified vet or animal expert is the only person qualified to give you expert advice in regards to your pet/s)
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5 Potential Home Remedies For Rough Or Dry Dog Paws
First, A Word Of Caution About Home Remedies
Before thinking about using home remedies for rough or dry dog paw pads:
– Seek a vet’s assessment of your dog’s paw pads, and seek their safety approval on any homemade treatment option
You can read some general information about dog paw pad health here.
Onto potential options …
1. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil can be used on paws, noses, elbow and skin – but, it should be a coconut oil formulated for dogs.
Organic, raw, cold pressed, unprocessed, extra virgin coconut oil contains many minerals and vitamins that are good for moisturising skin on healthy dogs (watch out for dogs with coconut allergies or other conditions).
You rub it into the skin so it soaks in past the surface.
Specifically it has good saturated fats, vitamin E, vitamin K, MCTs and lauric acid – so it’s packed with goodness.
Owners have applied it to:
Paws with hot spots
It’s might also be great for the health of dogs’ coats and fur, and their noses.
One such organic extra virgin cold pressed coconut oil is:
- Petpost Skin & Coat Grooming Coconut Oil for Dogs (on Chewy)
- Petpost Coconut Oil For Dogs (on Amazon).
This coconut oil is made with:
100% Pure and Natural
No Hydrogenated Fat
No Animal Cruelty
Other coconut oil for dog products are:
- Zesty Paws Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil for Dogs (on Chewy)
- Alpha Pet Zone Coconut Oil For Dogs (on Amazon).
One thing to note about coconut oil though is that dogs can find it tasty or like the smell, and may try to lick it off more than a tasteless or scent free butter, balm or moisturizer.
Common vaseline is another option to add moisture back to, and lubricate the skin.
You’ll want to make sure it’s formulated for dog skin and paws though.
Although there are different types of Vaseline, the main product, Vaseline Jelly, is made by purifying and refining petrolatum – a by product of petroleum (oil).
Some dog owners have used the triple purified, non-toxic and refined vaseline on dog paws safely as a lubricant for the paws without any issues (as long as their dog doesn’t start eating it).
There are affordable natural and USDA organically certified paw balms and waxes available though, so if you don’t have vaseline at home, it’s probably worth considering something organic instead.
3. Make sure your dog is healthy
A prevention solution.
There are certain health conditions and diseases that can contribute to rough or cracked paws.
The following are some common problems or health issues to do with dog paws and pads:
Skin damage caused by force or external objects
Liver disease causing pad damage
Allergies causing damage
Hormonal imbalances causing damage
Autoimmune diseases causing damage
If you think your dog’s paws or paw pads are’t recovering like they should, or are getting damaged too easily, it’s worth taking them to the vet to see if one of these problems is present.
4. Make sure your dog is eating and drinking enough, and eating the a healthy diet
A prevention solution.
The paw pads need a rapid blood supply, and are one area of your dog’s body that regenerate skin cells more frequently than others.
Dogs that are not eating or drinking enough may have issues with maintaining the paw pads normally in these ways.
Not drinking enough can lead to dehydration in parts of the body, and not eating enough can contribute to not enough nutrients in the blood supplying the pads.
Not eating enough means that your dog might not have enough energy to move around and get blood moving in the first place.
5. Allow your dog time and space to run on softer surfaces
Another prevention solution.
Rough pads can be caused by your dog running on hard surfaces like concrete, bricks and asphalt.
If possible, lay down a softer surface at home like a fake grass rug, or take your dog for walks or exercise on grassed and softer areas.
This should help your dog’s pads to stay softer.
We wrote a guide about protecting a dog’s paws from heat, cold and salt here.
Lastly, Be Aware Commercial Dog Paw Care Products Exist
Of course, some people decide home remedies aren’t for them.
In this case, you can look at commercial dog paw pad waxes, balms and moisturisers
Some popular options include (which include some natural or USDA organic certified options):
- Pawstruck Ruff Relief Balm for Dogs (on Amazon) – balm
- Dermoscent BioBalm Skin Repairing Dog Balm (on Chewy) – 100% natural
- 4 Legger Certified Organic Nose and Paw Pad Healing Balm (on Amazon) – balm
- ResQ Organics Skin Treatment with Manuka Honey Dog & Cat Healing Balm (on Chewy)
- ResQ Organics Pet Skin Treatment (on Amazon) – moisturiser
Read more about some of the best dog paw pad balms, waxes, butter, and moisturizers in this guide.
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