Tuesday, 17 May 2011

First aid for a sprained paw

It can be a difficult time when your dog hurts himself. It’s not like a human being where you can ask where it hurts, is it?

But what do you do in those first vital minutes before you can seek veterinary advice? In this case I called vetfone, which is a 24-hour service available to Dogs Trust members that is run by vets. When you call you will be put through to a veterinary nurse.

Here are some tips for dealing with a sprained paw -

  • When your dog sprains his paw he will yelp and hold the paw up.
  • First you need to check if there’s a break or any ligament damage. Check along the length of the paw by touching it as gently as you can. Is he in any pain when you touch a certain area? Is he reluctant to let you touch an area of his paw?
  • Check his nails to see if any of them are broken. This may be the reason why he is holding his paw up.
  • Your dog needs to rest for seven days. This means NO running or jumping about in that time, so short lead walks only. This can be difficult to do if your dog is as active as mine.
  • Try and keep the paw warm. If your dog will tolerate it, wrap a hot water bottle in a towel and put that next to the paw.
  •  If there’s no improvement after a day then take your dog to the vet. He may need anti-inflammatories or to have the paw x-rayed. Or the vet may need to immobilise the paw.

Note – The advice give here is NO substitute for going to your vet.

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