Why Maltipoos Lick and Chew at Their Paws and Remedies to Treat the Affliction
There are several reasons why dogs do this.
1) Allergies- Many owners cringe when they read about this being a common cause. It may have been diagnosed with attempted treatment in the past without good results. Other owners feel that this diagnosis will lead down a long, winding road of frustration. However, the good news is that in many cases when it is directly only on the paws, this is an environmental factor that can be relatively easy to resolve.
Which type of allergy
- With the majority of allergies, a Maltipoo will have other signs and symptoms other than just licking his paws. This consist of a wide range of issues including: itchy eyes, eye and/or nasal discharge, itching over the entire body, hair loss over other areas of the body, vomiting, changes to the stool including diarrhea, sneezing, and/or coughing and wheezing.
When a Maltipoo's issue is limited to his paws, this is an indication that if it is indeed an allergy, it is due to a contact trigger. This makes it easier to treat and once the paws have healed and the allergen is removed from the dog's environment, Maltipoos will stop licking and chewing.
How to Treat This at Home
- In some cases, you can fix this at home as long as there are no other signs of concern. If your Maltipoo does have other symptoms or if the skin has broken open to the point of bleeding, you will want to have a veterinarian examine the paws. There may be a need for prescribed medications and testing to determine the source of the allergy. However, if the paws are have minimal sores and there is minimal to moderate hair loss, and you suspect a contact allergy it can help to remove the trigger.
In the spring, summer and fall, it is not uncommon for a Maltipoo to lick at his paws or chew at his feet after being outside. Irritants in the grass and on the ground surfaces often attach to the paws and are tracked back into the home. In addition, if you have recently obtained new carpeting or have started to use a new carpet deodorizer or flood cleaner, it may be causing a reaction.
In the winter, ice melt chemicals can cause intense itching and chemical burns to a dog's paws. Even if you do not use these at your home, they are often used in other areas and cars can easily track them into your own neighborhood.
It can help to:
- Thoroughly rinse off the paws before entering back into the house. Wiping with a wet rag or canine wipe is not very sufficient. If the weather allows it, use an outside hose to rinse off all paws.
- All people in the household should remove shoes before entering into the living areas.
- Floors should be vacuumed using a HEPA certified vacuum cleaner. These remove 99.97% of particles as small as 0.3 micrometers - these are the irritants that you cannot see but may be the source of intense itching and subsequent licking or chewing for your Maltipoo.
- Use products to offer relief and healing (more ahead)
Professional Veterinary Treatment
- If the above steps do not offer improvement after one week, it will be time to have your Maltipoo's veterinarian perform thorough testing for allergies
. The two most important things that a vet will do is to test to determine the exact trigger and offer prescribed treatments that may include Antihistamines, anti-inflammatory medication and possibly antibiotics if the paws have developed an infection.