It can be a very stressful situation when your dog hurts his paw. Fortunately, you can act quickly to bandage the injured area. It is necessary to put on several layers of protection, including a sterile pad, a cotton dressing, gauze and an elastic liner. With proper care, these layers will help your pet heal as quickly as possible.
Part 1 of 3: Getting Ready to Bandage a Dog's Paw
Step 1. Assess the severity of the wound
If your pet has severely injured its paw, the best option is to take it to a veterinarian right away. Check the paw and see if it's bleeding uncontrollably, if there's an open wound, or if there's a problem with the movement. In the presence of any of these factors, take the dog to the vet.
- If he has little bleeding or a minor injury, you can treat him yourself by bandaging his paw.
- If the skin has come off under the paw, it may be sore or broken. You can bandage it at home in that case.
- Take a photo of the wound before bandaging it. If it gets worse or becomes infected, you can show it to the vet and help him understand the seriousness of the problem.
Step 2. Clean the wound
Before bandaging the dog's paw, the lesion needs to be completely clean. Wash it with cold water and baby soap to eliminate residue. Then, disinfect the area with an animal sanitizer or antibacterial soap so that it heals without becoming infected.
- Clean the lesion well under the paw, as this part is usually very dirty and needs extra care to stay clean.
- Avoid putting aggressive chemicals on the animal's paw. Baby soap will clean the wound without harming the dog.
Step 3. Dry the area
After cleaning the dog's wound, it is necessary to leave the area as dry as possible. Use a towel and remove as much moisture as you can. This way, the dressing won't get wet, making it uncomfortable and cold for the dog.
Drying the area before bandaging it minimizes the chance of bacteria growing inside the dressing
Step 4. Hold the dog so that he is still
When bandaging the paw, it is necessary to hold the animal well. Most dogs don't like to be touched or handled by their paw, especially if it's injured. Ask him to lie down and hold him while bandaging the affected area.
Ask someone to help you hold the dog if it's big and difficult to calm down or if it's too resistant to paw touch
Part 2 of 3: Bandaging the Affected Area
Step 1. Place a sterile block on the wound
It is necessary to protect the open wounds when bandaging the animal's paw. Place a pad of gauze in place so the blood or secretions are absorbed and provide cushioning that can protect the affected area.
- The block must be sterile as it will be in direct contact with the open wound.
- If the dog does not have a superficial wound, the block is not necessary.
Step 2. Put on a cotton dressing
Hold the gauze pad in place, if you used one, and begin wrapping a cotton bandage around the entire paw. Start at the top, bringing the bandage under the foot and up again above the ankle. This layer provides more cushioning and protection from injury.
- You only need to wrap the dressing once or twice around the wound. If you curl up more, you can end up restricting the dog's movement.
- Cover the entire area above the paw to allow the dressing to stay in place. Roll up to just above the animal's ankle joint.
Step 3. Wrap the area with gauze, covering the cotton layer
Use a roll of gauze to apply some tension, but not too tight. That way the cotton will stay in place and there will be compression in the dressing.
A layer of gauze that is too tight can cut off circulation to the dog's paw. Make it snug, but not so tight that the cotton is fully compressed
Step 4. Put on an elastic lining
There is a special product used in the outer layer of a bandage, which is elastic gauze. The product is self-adhering and holds the dressing layers well in place. Attach the elastic by placing a pen or your fingers on the edges. This will make it more difficult for the dog to remove it.
- As with the gauze layer, do not pull the elastic lining too far so as not to cut off the paw's circulation. Just wrap it tightly enough to pull the bandage folds and get a tight grip on the paw.
- The elastic is rolled up smoothly, the chances of being opened by the dog are less.
Part 3 of 3: Taking care of the dressing
Step 1. Stop the dog from biting the bandage
When the paw is already bandaged, you need to keep an eye out so that the pet doesn't keep moving or biting the bandage. If he does not stop moving, it is necessary to place an Elizabethan cone or collar on the animal.
- The cone minimizes the possibility of the animal physically placing its mouth close to the dressing.
- To prevent it from biting the dressing, try mixing powdered cayenne pepper, paprika, and petroleum jelly and rub the mixture on the outside of the strips. The animal will not like the taste and will avoid chewing the place.
Step 2. Change the dressing daily to keep the wound clean and healthy
Remove the strips by cutting them vertically with scissors. Then put the dressings back on using the same methods used before.
- Ask your veterinarian how often the dressing needs to be changed and how long it should be worn.
- Daily change allows adjustment of band compression. This can be helpful if the affected area is more or less swollen.
Step 3. Inspect the injured area
When changing the dog's dressing, take a look at the wound and see if it is healing or not infected. Signs of infection include redness, discharge and swelling.