Q. Why does my dog lick his paws? There is no obvious injury, or skin irritation.thanks
DR. CHRISTIE LONG, D.V.M., C.V.A.
A. One other thing to consider as the possible cause of licking is pain. Older dogs can have arthritic changes to the toes and this can cause them to lick constantly. As pointed out below allergies are the most common cause of licking the feet, as dogs frequently have allergies to the plants that they walk on (like grass).
If you want to talk more specifically about which paws are affected, how often he does it, etc. We can consult about his problem.
A. Excessive licking of the paws is a common sign of allergies. Allergies can be frustrating to diagnose since they can have multiple causes (inhaled, food, contact). Schedule an appointment with your veterinarian. Rule out infection (bacterial or fungal) as well as skin parasites or trauma. A pet approved colloidal oatmeal bath or foot soak can soothe itchy skin. Consider adding an essential fatty acid supplement (usually a fish oil) to the diet to promote healthy skin. Search www.pet360.com for fish oil supplements. Discuss food elimination trials and allergy testing with your vet.