Here’s why My Dog Chews His Nails

14 Dec, 2020

Here’s why My Dog Chews His Nails

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As a dog owner you may find yourself worrying that your dog has rather unsavoury habits.  For example, dogs often chew their nails. You may ask yourself but why does my dog chew his nails? Here are some possible reasons why your dogs bite their nails.

dog chews his nails
Dog toys are a great entertainment and distraction

Photo by Mathew Coulton

Is your dog chewing his nails? Here’s why!

Noticing that your dog chews his nails frequently could indicate an underlying condition that your dog might be experiencing. Usually, dogs bite or chew on their nails when something is irritating them on their paws. Check out these Gentle dog trainers

It is advised to stay vigilant to keep a check on any other unusual behavior of your dogs, such as loss of appetite or lack of enthusiasm around loved ones. Additionally, for guidance on any other matter related to your dog, you may check the puppy leader. It is a complete handbook for dog owners where various dog-related issues and queries are addressed.

Besides, if you feel overwhelmed when you see your dog chew his nails excessively, it is time you dig into the problem. Multiple reasons could cause your dog to adopt such behavior. In this article, we will walk you through various reasons that would explain why your dog is chewing on his nails.

Reasons For Your Dog Chewing His Nails

Dogs use their teeth to relieve any itchiness or discomfort they experience on any part of their body where their paws cannot reach. Similarly, biting or chewing their nails could mean they might have any medical or behavioral condition causing such behavior. So, let’s have a look at some possible reasons.

If a dog chews his nails it could be because they are overgrown

If your dog chews his nails it could be due to the overgrown nails. A dog with long nails experiences difficulty in walking as it put pressure on their paws. The nails may dig into the dog’s skin, causing injuries or infections. 

Thus, check your pup’s nails if you observe him biting them. Trim their nails yourself or take them to a professional groomer. Also, you should check on your dog’s nails regularly to avoid nail-biting behavior.

dog with a bone
If your dog chews his nails offer the occasional dog bone to entertain and nourish and distract from the nails

Photo by Janosch Diggelmann

Anxiety Disorder

A dog experiencing anxiety may cause him to chew on his nails. Anxiety in dogs might arise due to boredom, loneliness, or a changing environment. You may consider planning some playful activities to help them overcome anxiety.

Moreover, other signs of anxiety such as pacing, urinating inside the house, or any other such symptoms may indicate a severe anxiety disorder. Sometimes dogs have an obsessive-compulsive disorder, which causes them to chew their paw frequently. In this case, you must consult your veterinarian for the solution to the problem.

Injury On Nails Or Paw

Your dog may have a broken or injured nail this could be why your dog chews his nails. It might compel him to lick or chew at the affected part to relieve the pain. Dogs can have their nails broken from hitting it on something while running or playing.

Also, other signs of an injured nail include swollen nail, limping, or paw sensitivity. If it goes untreated, it may cause serious health complications in the long run. So, you must visit your veterinarian for assistance if you notice any nail injury. 

Allergies Producing Itchiness

Dogs with allergies are more likely to develop a habit of chewing or biting their nails. it could be why your dog chews his nails. In severe cases, skin allergies cause swelling, itching, and redness. There are different types of allergies that your canine may experience. It includes grass allergies, food allergies, and seasonal allergens.

Grass allergies

Dogs who are allergic to grass experience itchiness after coming in contact with it. Similarly, food allergies also cause skin itchiness and redness after coming in contact with certain foods.

Further, outdoor or seasonal allergies are due to the allergens in the surroundings. Your dog may feel itchiness due to the presence of allergens in its surroundings. Subsequently, they start chewing on their paws to alleviate itchiness and discomfort.

Providing dogs with allergies the appropriate products can effectively alleviate symptoms and enhance their overall quality of life. This not only promotes their comfort but also prevents additional harm to their skin, nails, and overall well-being.

a dog licks his nose
If your dog chews his nails it could be for all kinds of reasons

Photo by James Barker

Skin Infections

Some skin conditions around your dog’s paws may be the cause why your dog chews his nails. A common skin condition called mange causes hair loss on the legs and paws of a dog. In some cases, chewing at their nails develop secondary infections. 

Additionally, some of the skin conditions may produce a particular smell in your dog, making it easy for you to identify it. Seek your vet’s assistance in case you doubt that your dog is having skin problems.

Bottom line on why your dog chews his nails

All in all, if your dog chews his nails it may indicate that he is experiencing some kind of discomfort or an underlying medical condition. There are several reasons why your dog chews his nails. We have highlighted some of the common reasons that lead to this particular behavior.

You must keep a check on the symptoms to understand the reason for your dog’s actions. If you feel that you are unable to address the situation, then you must seek your vet’s assistance. 

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Further reading about dogs and dog care

At Housesit we always try to share useful and informative blogs and practical advice with our members. Read on to find some helpful articles with useful tips for dog owners and  about dogsitting.

Top dog sitting tips for beginners

Dog sitters’ tips – Dog’s body language and how to read it

What is a dog sit?

What is a live in dogsitter

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