Q. My cat's paws pads look like they have busted open some. What is this and how do I help him?
A. You cat may have walked in something caustic or hot and damaged his pads, or he may have worn them running or climbing something, especially if he goes outdoors.
If the wounds are superficial and just in the skin, I suggest washing the area well with antibacterial soap and water and make sure to scrub it well to keep the wound open. Apply a warm washcloth to it 2-3 times a day for five minutes at a time to help keep it clean and draining. After washing and the compress, dry it well and apply a small amount of antibiotic ointment that does NOT contain hydrocortisone, like Neosporin to the wound. Steroids will slow healing. Rub it in well and don't leave any excess for your pet to lick off. If it does not show signs of healing or your pet develops a fever, loses his appetite, start vomiting and/or having diarrhea, if the spot becomes reddened, hot and/or hard, get him in to be seen by your veterinarian right away.