How to Protect Paws from Hot Pavement

The hot pavement is always a factor to consider when walking your dog. Urban areas are covered by an average of 45% pavement. During summer months, pavement can reach temperatures of 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Therefore, when you take your pet for a walk make sure to take precautions.

How to Prevent Burnt Paws 

It’s always fun to take out your pet and enjoy the summer weather together. However, hot pavement can cause skin damage to your pet’s paws in seconds. Asphalt gets almost 50 degrees hotter than the outside temperature. For example, if the outside temp is 87°, the asphalt temp. is 142°. Keep these techniques in mind for your summer walks:

Toughen your pet’s paws – When it’s a cooler day walk your pet on the pavement. The hard and rough pavement will help toughen your pet’s’ paws. This will help create a natural resistance to damage from hot surfaces.

Stay on the grass – If you’re walking your dog during a hot day, stick to the shade. Avoid walking through overly sunny areas and areas heavy in pavement. Have your dog walk on the grass. A shady park is a perfect place to take your dog on a hot afternoon.

Walk your dog when it’s cool – This may seem obvious, but one that isn’t considered enough. Fall, summer, and spring are great seasons to walk your dog. However, you still have to be mindful of the pavement temperature. Walking your dog in the mornings and late evenings are best. This is when the pavement will be its coolest. Avoid walking your pet in the afternoon or early evening. This is when the pavement is at its hottest temperature. 

If you’re unsure about the temperature of the pavement there’s a simple test you can conduct.  Place the back of your hands on the pavement. If you can’t keep them there for five seconds the pavement is too hot for your pet.

Products to Protect Paws 

Sometimes your pet is going to be on hot pavement, especially in urban areas. If you absolutely have to walk your dog on a hot day, there are some precautions you should take.

1.    Moisturize your pet’s paws – You want to toughen your pet’s paws. However, you don’t want them to become too dry. This will cause cracking and leave them more sustainable to heat damage. Moisturizing the paws daily with products like Paw Nectar can help prevent injuries and burns.

2.    Use Paw Wax – Paw wax can protect your pet’s paws from potentially harmful surfaces and chemicals like road salts. You can easily apply paw wax to your pet’s paws before a walk. This will help prevent damage from the hot pavement.

3.    Try dog shoes – Dog shoes are a great way to protect your dog’s paws from the elements. However, not all dogs are open to wearing them. Keep in mind not all dogs can get used to them and may have a hard time walking in them. It’s important to get the right size. Moreover, the shoes with rubber or neoprene bottoms are the most protective. Keep in mind these are for short term use only. Dogs perspire partly through their paws. When their paws are free, their perspiration allows their body temperature to adjust.

How to Treat Burnt Paws 

Damage on all four paws can make it extremely tough for your pet to walk. However, there are solutions to heat damage to your pet’s paws. If your pet’s paws are damaged, take them to the vet. [] Their treatment will depend on how severe their burns are. Most treatments are antibiotics and bandaging. This will prevent the damage from becoming infected. Infections can cause greater damage in the future.

The length of time the paw pad burn lasts depends on the type of dog and the extent of the injuries. You are waiting for several layers of tissue to grow back. While healing dogs should rest and avoid hot pavement. Walking should be limited, and the dog should stay inside as much as possible. Fortunately, if healed properly, there is no long-term damage to paw pad burns.

It’s better to be informed when it comes to your pet. The Bregman Veterinary Group can answer all your questions about paw pad protection and treatment. Paw pad damage can cause infections and unnecessary pain for your pet. Don’t wait until the damage is done to take precautions. 

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