Hi everyone… one of my pups has fallen into the “late summer itchies” stage and I’m at a complete loss for what to do for her because nothing works. Her only symptom is paw licking/chewing – intermittently. She’ll go for hours seemingly fine and then have a serious itchy paw attack, primarily the front paws. Her ears seem fine, and though she occasionally scratches at them I’d say it’s 10% or less of the time. She’s been getting us up in the morning… will sleep until ~4-5 am and then it’s up chewing the paws.
What does this sound like? She eats an incredibly varied diet, primarily raw so food allergy is last on my list of suspicions… but I can’t rule it out I guess. Stools have been perfect though. We’ve tried rinsing off her feet every time she comes in from outside in either water/baking soda, water/iodine, and recently I picked up some Epsom salt but I’m not even sure it’s worth trying. The foot rinsing does not seem to have an effect, though. I’ve also been giving her half a Benedryl (12.5 mg) OR half of a Zyrtec (5 mg) with meals but neither seems to offer her any relief.
Any input or suggestions are greatly appreciated. It may come down to allergy/blood tests at the vet but they’re my last resort just because of the money… however, I hate to see her suffer like this. If it is a seasonal thing, we’re still at least a month away from first frost. Thanks in advance.
It may be a grass pollen allergy. I know you’ve tried the foot washing route, but could you try it one more time with vinegar in the water? One cup per gallon of water in a cat litter pan, have her stand in it while you wash her feet then step out onto a towel for drying and right back into the house. Good luck, I know how frustrating it is.
Thank you for the suggestion Patty, I will try nearly anything at this point. We will give the vinegar solution a go and see what happens. Between the mosquitoes attacking me and the dogs and the freakin’ pollen, etc. I cannot wait for cold weather!! (though I may be the only one, lol)
I’m in Florida, you are not the only one!!! We had about 5 days last winter where we even needed a sweatshirt, I am so ready for cold weather.
I’m ready for cool weather, too. It’s been hot and humid here and the weeds are growing like crazy. They look so pretty along the roadside, covered in white, blue and yellow flowers, but are wreaking havoc on me. I have seasonal allergies and a couple of nights ago, totally out of nowhere, they’re horrible.
So, my first guess for your pup would be seasonal allergies. Wonder if a more holistic remedy, such as local honey or bee pollen might help. Too bad you can’t use a Neti Pot on a pup. : ) Unfortunately, Benadryl help mine the most and I can only take it once a day, at bedtime, or I’m wired for days on end; and the only thing that really helps is moving through the seasons.
I’m in PA and feel like we’ve been getting robbed of a “real” winter lately… maybe this will be my year 🙂 10 feet of snow anyone? Just kidding.
Betsy I like the bee pollen idea. While I was reading up on allergies this morning at 3:30 am (while giving her a belly rub… which she will gladly stop chewing for) I read a post by another dog mom who said giving stinging nettle cleared her dog’s allergies right up. I’m not expecting miracles but even a LITTLE help would be great right now.
Although just to be extra confusing, she actually had an abnormally good day today… no chewing between like 6 am and 5:30 pm. I didn’t even give her any allergy meds. But tonight she’s been going for them again. What the heck!
Another vote for the vinegar and water solution.
We are still doing battle with Hank’s feet, but when he doesn’t have the open sores on his feet, the vinegar and water works great. (It would sting horribly right now, poor guy).
24 hours of the vinegar/water rinse has not shown a noticeable difference really 🙁 While yesterday was strangely good for her and we weren’t awake at 3:30 this morning, today was back to “pretty bad” and I just don’t understand…
The only thing that I’ve found that does NOT irritate my dog’s paws further is this little bottle of dog hot spot shampoo I bought at Walmart. It’s called Pro-Sense Hot Spot shampoo. I am pretty sure I tried every holistic concoction on the web and no matter what I try, it always makes things worse. Fearing she was getting into some toxin on her feet, I have been washing them with this outside on the back porch when we get home from our morning walk, just leaving it on a minute only then wash it off. It’s a good gentle shampoo also. Doesn’t lather much though but I would highly recommend it. Otherwise, I would say to only use warm water and be sure and massage it in good so you get between her toes and into the fur.
Thank you for the suggestion, I will definitely check it out.
One thing I might mention is one of the people here told me that if you use epsom salt to soak their paws, you should rinse it off after. When I used it, I did not rinse it off so maybe you could try the epsom salt but be sure and rinse it.
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