Many dogs suffer from mobility issues that can make it difficult or even impossible for them to get around.
This can be due to a number of different factors, including arthritis, hip dysplasia, neurological problems, and more. In some cases, dog boots can help disabled dogs by providing much-needed support and stability.
There are a number of different types of dog boots available on the market, each designed to meet the specific needs of different types of disabilities. For example, there are boots with special soles that provide traction and stability for dogs who have trouble walking on slippery surfaces.
There are also boots with built-in supports that can help take some of the weight off of a dog’s joints and hips, making it easier for them to move around. And there are even boots that can be used to help correct a dog’s gait, providing support and guidance for each step.
Let’s look closely at the pros and cons of boots for disabled dogs.
Pros of Dog Boots For Disabled Dogs
Provide lost foot grip
To start with, boots provide your disabled dog with extra traction when they walk. The added grip prevents them from slipping and stumbling on slippery surfaces. This can be extremely helpful for dogs who have trouble walking on tile or hardwood floors.
Adds support for weak joints
Another big benefit of dog boots is that they can provide support for weak joints. This is especially useful for dogs suffering from arthritis or hip dysplasia. The added support takes some of the weight off of the joints and helps to ease the pain.
Prevent paw injuries
Loss of mobility in your dog’s leg(s) can lead to it having difficulties with paw placement due to pain and paw sensitivity. This can result in it dragging its paws, scrapping, wounding them, and cracking nails in the process.
Dog boots prevent such paw injuries and provide time for the scrapes, sores, and split nails to heal.
Prevent medication from being licked off
In cases where the dog has developed wounds on her paws or cracks on her nails, the application of appropriate medication on the affected paws is advisable and inevitable.
However, our dogs being dogs… will want to lick the meditation.
Because… of course!
This is when dog boots can become most helpful, as they prevent the medication from being licked off, which in turn will help your pooch’s recovery.
Protect the inactive dog from low temperatures
Body temperature is generally raised by energetic movement and activity.
Once a dog is losing mobility, she will not be as active as she once was. The inactivity more often than not makes your dog prone to low temperatures. In such cases, dog boots can greatly help your pet keep its feet warm and alleviate the effects of arthritis as well as the aches and pains of immobile joints.
Boots can become indispensable, especially if your pet has lost feeling in their feet from nerve damage or paralysis.
This is because without feeling your dog will be unaware of how cold (or hot) the ground is beneath their feet. This puts them at risk for frostbite in the winter and burns from hot pavement in the summer.
During extremely cold weather, you can try inserting fleece All-Weather Boot Liners inside your pet’s dog boot for extra warmth.
Can be a cosmetic prop and support
For those dogs that have perhaps lost a part of their paw due to a dog fight or cancer, dog boots can be helpful as a cosmetic prop to disguise the affected or missing paw.
In such cases, a padded dog boot could also provide additional support for the affected paw. There have also been cases where dog boots have been used to cover dogs’ prosthetic legs and splints.
As with most pet accessories, dog boots are readily available in all shapes, sizes, and colors. If you cannot find suitable dog boots for your disabled dog, you can have them custom-made.
All that is required are the breed type and paw size or special attributes of the dog’s paws for a fitting.
As you can see, there are plenty of advantages to dog boots. But what about the downsides?
Cons of Dog Boots For Disabled Dogs
Can be an irritant
Since our dogs are not born wearing dog boots, they are an acquired taste for many.
For such dogs, boots can be irritating, resulting in their frustration and frantic bids to remove them. While strapping them on firmly might be a solution in some circumstances, it can lead to further injury and an unhappy dog that doesn’t want to engage in any activities.
Which defeats the purpose of wearing them…
Can be quite costly
While the cost of dog boots is relative, depending on the material, size, and purpose of the dog boots you require for your pet, they can be quite costly.
This is particularly true for dog boots that are required to provide support for weak joints and those with inbuilt supports.
Not all boots suit all needs
Just like shoes for humans, not all types of dog boots will suit all needs. This means that you might have to buy several types of dog boots to find the perfect fit for your pet’s needs.
They don’t always stay on
Experience has shown that dog boots don’t always stay securely on all the dog’s feet. After being out for a walk with your boot-wearing pooch, there is nothing as disappointing as finding the boots have been lost along the way!
Putting dog boots on for the first time can be a challenge, even for those who are used to handling their pets. If you’re not experienced in putting them on, it’s best to seek professional help from your veterinarian or a pet groomer.
Must be regularly checked and changed
While they are the best chance of an active and healthy lifestyle for your dog, dog boots need to be constantly checked to ensure they are all still on your pet’s feet and that none of them have developed punctures or holes.
They may need to be repaired or changed often.
In the latter case, where your supplier does not sell the boots in singles, you will be forced to purchase the full set of dog boots. This can easily become an added annual expense for your pet’s care.
Are Dog Boots Worth It?
The bottom line is that dog boots can be a great way to help your disabled dog with mobility issues.
They can provide extra traction and support for weak joints, and they can even help to prevent further injury. However, they can also be quite costly, and you may need to seek professional help to put them on correctly.
Do some research and talk to your veterinarian to see if dog boots are the right option for your pet.