Do big paws really mean the dog will be big or is that just a myth?

Ive always went by that saying and have always ended up with big dogs but now I have an 8month male german shepherd mixed with either border collie or australian shepherd, not exactly sure. Well he has huge paws. Close to the same size as my 85pound german shepherd male. Everyone who sees hims says he is going to be huge because of his paws. But he is still so small for his age (he looks more like a 5 or 6 month old instead of an 8 month old) I did resuce him from a pound when he was 6 months, and he was in terrible terrible condition. Could he just be developing late cause of not recieving proper treatment? Can dogs have a late growth spurt? Or does the big paw thing mean nothing?

Asked by Mojo on Jun 5th 2010 in Mixed Breeds
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It's pretty much a myth! Foot size is dependant on breed to a large degree and the amount of bone an adult dog will have. My labs always had HUGE feet as babies and as adults they were normal sized labs with the females weighing around 55 lbs and the males around 65-70 lbs, not huge by any means. I have seen labs with what look like tiny feet ending up at over 100 lbs yet still lacking good bone and feet. As some one else suggested... bassets are an excellent example of foot size not being related to adult size. Sooo, it is pretty much a myth, especially when trying to determine size in mixed breed puppies.

answered on Jun 7th.

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For the most part, you can tell by their paws. This isn't the case 100 percent of the time though, so really you just have to wait and see. I was told that my oldest dog Hector would be medium to large, he was near 130 lbs at his biggest and has settled into a nice 120 lbs today. His paws were huge as a puppy, but they insisted that his breed wouldn't be a giant dog, he is pretty giant.

I have a pit/lab mix that I rescued from the streets. He is a medium size dog at about 65 lbs. His paw are oddly big for his size. I do wonder if he had been fed properly and had better nutrition as a younger dog if he might have been bigger.

I do know that malnurishment can cause a stunt in growth. My full pit is not very big either, he was nearly starved to death when I rescued him from a chain where he was abandoned. His paws aren't very big though. So really you just have to wait it out. I think there is something to the big paw/big dog but its not always the case.

Hector answered on 6/5/10. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


Is it sorta a myth. A bassett hound has huge feet when they are babies. But, they are not really that big. This helps them be able to travel in snow to hunt rabbits.
Some dogs can have big feet even though they are from a larger breed. Sometimes feet can be not proportioned to the body.
My dog had huge feet, still does but she is a large girl dog. Not over the standard just big.

Dieta answered on 6/5/10. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


Pepper was a tiny 9 pound puppy at 8 weeks when we got her at the HS. In her awkward weeks, her tail was too long, ears were way to big and floppy, and her feet! Her feet were so big she looked like a Snow Shoe Hare!
She topped out a very tall, skinny, 53 pounds at 18 months old.
A male should be a bit larger than that.

Pepper answered on 6/5/10. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


Based on his fluffy feet, Jack was estimated to be an Airedale mix as a puppy by the shelter staff. They told me to get ready for a 70 lb dog. LOL!

Clearly, it was just fuzzy feet, so people can make mistakes by depending too much on foot size. There is some generalization that you can tell from the feet, but as someone pointed out, there are also awkward stages, too.

Dogs can definitely have later growth spurts, but it's usually more about filing out than getting much bigger. Though I will say that Jack grew UPWARDS rather than outwards. His legs did get (relatively) quite long for his body size at around 11-12 months old.

We get "stilts" comments all the time about him and he certainly didn't have these long legs as a puppy.

Dogs are like a box of never know what you're gonna get. :-)

Mojo is adorable.

Jack answered on 6/5/10. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


Mojo will definetily need big shoes.

Baxter answered on 6/8/10. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer