Monday, June 25, 2007

6 month old Labrador Retriever Cuts her Paws

This e-mail was sent in from Jen (USA). Jen's six month old Labrador Retriever puppy has a problem with her legs and paws getting cut when the visit the dog park.

Reader's E-mail - Jen Writes:

My poor pup is 6 mos old and cute as a button. My concern is that everytime we seem to go to the dog park (an all dirt park,) she comes home with bleeding paws/legs.

First, a few weeks ago, on both her back legs, about 1/2 way between the knee and the paw, she began to bleed after our dog park visit. The site looks like an abrasion. They begin to heal and scab over until the next visit to the dog park.

Now, today, her front paws, began to bleed and she cut both front pads at the dog park. These are also the pads that are 1/2 way between the foot and the elbow that began to bleed. It looks as though they were also rubbed raw.

Is this common? They don't seem to hurt her, but she leaves a mess in the car on our way home, and i am worried they will one day become infected. Thank you for your time.

Jen

All About Labradors Answer:

Hello Jen,

The information given here is to help you learn more about your Labrador Retriever and not to replace your veterinarian's advice. Disclaimer

Thank you for writing and sorry to hear about your pups injuries.

One of the most common puppy dog injuries are ones to their skin and muscles. Injuries will happen, as they are a standard part of dog ownership. From cut paws, cracked pads, to a gash on the leg, a puncture wound from bushes, thorns, glass, injures are bound to happen.

At 6 months of age, your young Labrador Retrievers pads are still very soft and are vulnerable, especially to different types of terrain. Running, jumping, and just plain fooling around on these different surfaces can scratch and/or cut into their pads, cause broken nails, and cause various abrasions to her legs and feet.

The most important thing to remember when your Labrador does get an injury is not to panic.

Examine the wound to make sure no foreign objects are present in the wound (I wouldn't recommend trying to remove the object yourself, as you could make things worst).

If nothing is present, cover the wound with a clean cloth or sterile dressing, and apply pressure to stop the bleeding.

If the wound continues to bleed, soaking through your dressing, do not remove it, simply add more dressing and continue to apply pressure till the bleeding stops.

The best thing to do from there is to take her to the veterinarian. Now this is totally up to you Jen, it’s your decision as to how the wound looks. For myself, I treat minor injuries to both of my Labradors , but as I said this is your decision.

If the wound is deep, stitches might be necessary. Any other serious injuries should also be dealt with by your vet immediately.

As for your Labradors condition now, you have to give the injury time to heal. Make sure you keep the injuries clean to prevent infections, and refrain from long walks, runs; until the injuries heal (I know this will be tough). Again I would recommend seeing your veterinarian to make sure there are no problems with her injuries.

One thing I use on my Labrador Retrievers minor injures is Aloe Vera. It doesn't have any harmful side-effects with my Labradors and I'm amazed at its soothing effects and the speedy healing process. Plus it won't harm them if they lick it off.

I have a friend that loves to take her Labrador Retriever hiking with her and she swears by the doggie boots for protection. I've had mixed results with my Labs as they seem to get pulled off, but it is something you might look into.

I hope this is of some help for you Jen. Please keep me advised of your Labradors condition. If you have further questions on this or anything else, please don't hesitate to ask.

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