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Why Won’t My Dog Let Me Touch His Paws – Pain Or Attitude?

Many long-time dog owners have experienced at least one dog who hates getting his paws touched. Although some dogs are very tolerant to people messing with their paws, others can have the tendency to yelp, run away, or even bite when someone touches their paws. Owners with a dog who reacts this way will likely wonder: why won’t my dog let me touch his paws? 

Don’t won’t let people touch their paws because it is a very sensitive area. Although touching healthy paws may not be painful to dogs, it can be overstimulating. 

In this article, we will be explaining all of the different reasons why your dog won’t let you touch his paws. We will also provide you with some other things to consider and answer some commonly asked questions about dogs who don’t like having their paws touched. 

Reasons Your Dog Won’t Let You Touch Its Paws

There are five main reasons why dogs do not like having their paws touched.

Although most of these causes pose no medical concerns, this behavior can be a sign that your dog’s paws are in pain. In these cases, you will need to take your dog to a vet as soon as possible. Here are the five reasons your dog won’t let you touch its paws. 

Paws Are Sensitive 

The paws are one of the most sensitive areas on a dog’s body. This is especially true for on the tops of a dog’s paws and in between the toe pads.

Therefore, most dogs don’t like being touched in this area because it is very sensitive, which can become overly stimulating in certain situations. 

Your Dog Had A Bad Experience

Sometimes dogs don’t like their paws being touched because they have had a bad experience in the past. This is usually the cause of this fear in dogs who have had a previous foot injury or have had a poor nail trimming experience.

The only way to fix this problem is to desensitize them to people touching his paws slowly. This can take a lot of time and effort. 

Your Dog’s Paws Hurt 

Your dog could be avoiding his paws from being touched because his paws are in pain. This is usually a clear sign if a dog used to let you touch his paws, and he is suddenly not letting you seemingly out of the blue. He will also likely be showing some other signs of pain. If you suspect that your dog is in pain, then you should take him to the vet as soon as you can. 

It Makes Your Dog Feel Vulnerable 

Your dog may not be letting you touch his paws because it makes him feel vulnerable. This is especially true if your dog doesn’t let you touch his paws only when he is on edge, stressed, or around distracting stimuli.

Examples of these things could include situations like your dog not letting you touch his paws when on a walk, when around other dogs, or during stressful situations. 

It Confuses Your Dog 

Touching paws is not a behavior that occurs in the canine world, so it isn’t very clear for them when their owner grabs one of his paws. Therefore, your dog could be initially hesitant of you touching his paws simply because it is a new and confusing experience for him. 

Why Does My Dog Try To Bite Me When I Touch His Paws

Dogs usually bite because they are afraid or in pain, so this is most likely the cause of your dog biting when you touch his paws.

You should visit a vet as soon as possible if you suspect your dog’s paws are painful. If you suspect that your dog’s biting is caused by fear, then you may be able to benefit from slowly desensitizing them to your touch. 

Are Dogs Paws Sensitive To Touch

Yes, dogs’ paws are very sensitive to the touch. It is one of the most sensitive parts of a dog’s body.

The most sensitive parts of a dog’s paws are the tops of the paws and in between their toe pads. This is also the most common reason why dogs do not like people touching their feet. 

How Can I Tell If My Dogs Paws Are Sore

A dog who has a painful paw will often show physical signs of a problem. The most common physical signs of pain in a dog’s paws include:

● Cracked or cut pads

● Lodged objects or hair matting between toe pads 

● Greyhound corns 

● Rashes

● Burns 

● Signs of frostbite 

● Yeast infections 

● Other infections 

In addition to this, your dog will likely be showing signs of pain. Some of the most common signs of pain in dogs include: 

● Lethargy 

● Limping 

● Whining or whimpering 

● Increased breathing rate

● Increased heart rate 

● Trembling or shaking 

● Decreased appetite 

If you suspect your dog is in pain, you should always visit a vet as soon as possible. This will not only alleviate your dog’s pain and make him more comfortable, but it could also save his life.

How Do You Get My Dog To Let Me Touch His Paws

You can slowly make your dog more tolerant of you touching his paws by desensitizing him to it. This is done by slowly working towards his paws by first petting in a place your dog likes, then slowly working down the legs towards the paws.

You will need to give your dog a treat every time your dog allows you to touch his paws. You can slowly do this more as your dog becomes more accepting of you touching his feet.

Other Considerations

There are some other things that you should consider when it comes to your dog not letting you touch his paws. These include what health conditions cause paw pain and why you should only touch a fearful dog’s paws only when necessary. Here are the things to consider when it comes 

What Health Conditions Can Cause Paw Pain

Many health conditions could cause paw pain in dogs. These health conditions include but are not limited to: 

● Injuries 

● Skin conditions 

● Localized infections (yeast infections are most common)

● Allergies 

● Chemical reactions 

● Parasitic infections 

● Arthritis 

If you suspect that your dog is affected by any of the above health conditions, you should visit a veterinarian as soon as possible. This will not only alleviate your dog’s pain and other uncomfortable symptoms, but in some cases, it could even save a dog’s life. 

Only Touch When Necessary

When dealing with a dog who reacts negatively to having his paws touched, you may only be able to touch his paws only when necessary. Although you may want to touch your dog’s paws for fun, it can cause unneeded stress and fear in a dog. Therefore you should probably only touch a highly reactive dog’s paws when: 

● His nails need to be trimmed

● You suspect a painful problem with your dog’s paws

You may need to visit a vet for both of these procedures. In addition to this, some dogs will need to be muzzled and some cases, sedated before anyone touches their paws. However, this is only for very rare and extreme cases.