Pet First Aid for Pet Professionals Level 3 (VTQ)

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Paws and Claws

Video 95 of 175
4 min 45 sec
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Common Paw and Claw Injuries in Pets: Causes and Care

Causes of Injuries

Pets often experience paw and claw injuries due to various reasons:

  • Trauma: Dogs may sustain injuries during walks, while cats often get injured in fights outdoors.
  • Nail Structure: Nails made of keratin are prone to breakage, especially in weak or vulnerable animals.

Common Paw and Claw Conditions

Several conditions can affect pet paws and claws:

  • Infections: Allergic reactions or skin allergies may lead to infections, often exacerbated by excessive licking.
  • Grass Seed Injuries: Grass seeds can penetrate the foot, causing swelling and discomfort, sometimes leading to migration up the leg.
  • Tumours: Tumours, particularly in cats, can develop in the toes or claws, sometimes indicating an underlying health issue.

Preventive Measures

To prevent paw and claw injuries:

  • Temperature Awareness: Avoid walking pets on surfaces too hot or cold for human touch to prevent burns or frostbite.
  • Grooming: Trim excessive fur around the feet, especially in snowy conditions, to prevent snow buildup and grass seed injuries.

Treatment and Care

For immediate care of paw injuries:

  • Snow Removal: Gently melt snow clumps with warm compresses or trim the fur to remove large ice blocks.
  • Gradual Warming: Slowly warm the feet to prevent shock from rapid temperature changes.