Thursday, November 7, 2013

DoggyStyle: The Other Benefits of Wiping Paws

We know so many people think that owning dogs means you are constantly cleaning, but we have realized just the opposite: it has just made us more aware of keeping a clean home. Our home is definitely cleaner now that we own dogs.
While I wouldn't say we are actually spending that much more time cleaning, we do take preventative measures so things don't really get that dirty.

The one thing that has seemed to make the biggest impact, is that we wipe our pooches feet each time they come back from being outside. While it may seem a bit excessive, it is kind of like a person who takes their shoes off when coming inside.
And while we were wondering if we were being a bit intense, lately people have told us some other benefits of consistently wiping paws:

Preventing Health Issues: 
Some of our dog friends who are prone to having itchy feet have mentioned how important it is to consistently wipe feet to prevent dogs chewing on their paws. Our friend Melvin, also dubbed "World's Most Allergic Dog", uses sensitive baby wipes after each walk to remove any allergens before they can come inside.
Maybe a little less common, but wiping their feet before they come inside helps remove any toxins they might have walked through. With all of the outdoor rat poison, fertilizers, construction, and general debris it just made more sense to wipe their paws so there isn't a chance they might lick their feet and ingest something toxic.

Make Handling Easier:
While it may not be true for every dog, we noticed consistently touching their feet has made them more accustomed to handling by other people, and especially to having their nails cut.
Miss M especially anticipates each paw that needs wiping and she will actually hand us her feet. Even shifting her weight for her back legs. (You can see it here in this 'vintage' video)

Chicago Grime:
Thinking about all of the mud, dog feces, uneaten food, spit, and worms found on Chicago sidewalks, it makes me a bit queazy to think of it all getting tracked into our home, rugs, and possibly furniture. When we were having our sofas cleaned, the upholstery cleaners even told us that it's also common for dogs to encounter squirrel, and other animal, feces and bring it into the home, and this can cause flus and illnesses in humans.
Has anyone else been doing this too?

Also:
Have you met our secret cleaning weapon?
Making cleaning fun.
Our Dog-Entry Rug

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11 comments:

Ashley Casey said...

I actually took my dog to the dermatologist the other day cause everytime we came back from being outside, Duke would chew his paws so much he'd start whimpering. Doc told me that he has a yeast infection, plus environmental and food allergies. Wiping his paws and face each time he comes back inside, and a bath once a week tuo remove lingering pollens and molds from all the leaves he likes to play in and chew on, has definitely been helping alleviate his suffering.

OG said...

I'm wiping Petey's feet from now on! I used to only do it in the rain but reading (and contemplating) what's on NYC and Chicago sidewalks has sealed the deal!

rebecae said...

We live in NYC and I'm so grossed out by what Delilah steps in. Plus she's had multiple bouts with Giardia. Just like I am compulsive about washing my face and brushing my teeth before bed, I wipe her feet after our nighttime walks. No dirty paws in my bed!

Two French Bulldogs said...

Mom wipes my paws too. It actually helps my allergies too
Lily

Irina said...

Thank you for sharing this. The video is informative with a high cutness factor. Oh Mr. B, my crush on him cannot get any bigger. How he patiently wags his tail waiting for his turn!!
My pittie is super allergic to many things and licking his paws is his favourite past time. I hope wiping his paws will become a nice training tool and a health benefit. thanks again, this is very useful.

Hannah@Eriesistibull said...

YES! We buy a whole case of Wet Ones Sensitive Skin wipes (from buythecase.com) and keep the spare in the bathroom closet. We wipe their feet off everytime they come in. Our pooches aren't itchy, so we do it for #1 & 3.

ohmelvin.com said...

I was reading the post and nodding and then we saw the shout out! I agree so much on all of it, especially the health benefits to the dogs and the humans in the house. And you're right, the dogs are so easy going when their feet are touched for whatever reason! :)

Jnn Y said...

I use the Kirkland brand unscented baby wipes from Costco for my dog's paws. A case of 9 packs (900 wipes) is ~$20 +tax. I also keep a pack right by the door, so no dirty paws for us either!

Wyatt said...

We have not found the cleaning magic for 2 curly dogs in the country, but thank you for the inspiration. We must try harder :)

Wyatt's Mom

Limassol said...

Our mom cleans our paws with only just a small wet towel :) no baby wipes here! We need to keep garbage to a minimum. And wet towels do the trick also! Thus, no chemicals (that may have been tested in our brothers) are putted on our paws :)

Emily said...

I think this is VERY smart. However I just can't seem to keep up with it! Hades' allergies are the worst with his feet and it's been often recommended by our vet we do this. While I am psycho dog mom about so many things this is one thing I can't stick to. Reading your post makes me want to try again though. We already stay stocked on hypoallergenic baby wipes since our backyard is primarily dirt and Braylon is a chronic "dirt roller." :)

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