|Barked: Sun Jan 23, '11 4:31pm PST |
|Lotions, oils, balms, etc will NOT "heal" the pad, and may even make the issue worse by softening the pad up too much. JMO. IF the split looks deep (injury), I'd take your dog to the vet (and still do the zinc I mention below). If the split is superficial, then I'd just get started on the zinc.
I'd try some "ZINC gluconate" (NOT "zinc sulfate") supplementation. Zinc helps toughen up the pads, as well as helps with overall immune health (in case the pads have a fungal/yeast issue going on, etc). Google the zinc gluconate doseage that is appropriate for your dog's weight. Here is one site:
1.5 mg/kg of body wt (a kg is rougly 2 lbs). My dog is 14.5 lbs, so I gave her about 10 mg of zinc gluconate when she had some paw issues (dry at first, thinning leather of pads, black was fading. Then I began using "balms" and they became OVERLY soft THIN pads). Some dogs with zinc deficiency get very thick "crusted and cracked" pads. Either way, I think zinc might help.
Phytates found in grains and veggies (plant type foods) can bind zinc, so if you feed lots of "doggie treats/cookies", I'd stop. Calcium also binds zinc, so do NOT give with yogrut, cheese, etc. I would give the zinc with a protein (meat of some kind), apart from his regular meals (esp if you feed kibble, ie "grain" based foods). I gave my little dog her zinc "crushed" and with about an ounce or so of meat as a "snack". Less than that amount of food with her zinc, and she'd vomit...so don't give zinc on an empty stomach.
I've seen quite a few dogs with zinc deficiency issues that were misdiagnosed as "allergy issues", or "paw injuries", etc, really do great with extra zinc supplementation. You do NOT want to over supplement zinc, as this can cause a mineral imbalance -- so if you are unsure about the dose to give, ask your vet.
It took about 2 mos for my dog's paws to go back to normal, though we saw results in about ONE WEEK. I continue to add a tiny bit of zinc to her diet still, at a much more reduced amount (about 5 mg a few times a week).
There are some products you can find that contain zinc (I know of a few people who have had great success with them):
1- ZinPro dog biscuits (but do not give this if your dog has any grain allergies). The other ZinPro zinc supplements contain "yeast" and I would avoid that IF your dog has allergies of any kind -- just saying, from experience with a yeast-allergy dog! lol
2- NutraZinc (this is just pure zinc gluconate, in powder form). I know MANY small dog owners who use this.
I was using zinc gluconate I purchased from GNC in tablet form, and then cutting the table and crushing...but the powder NutraZinc product is SO much easier! I just ordered some recently.
Again, please discuss the zinc supplementation with your vet, but I have personally seen many dogs really do great with their paws, their immune system, their coat, their SKIN, etc when given a bit of zinc supplementation.
Here's more info on cracked foot pads and zinc:
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