Yeast Infection in Dog Paws Symptoms, Home Remedies and Pictures

Yeast infections are common on dog skin especially on the ears and paws. This post concentrates on yeast infection in dog paws and explores the causes, symptoms, home remedies and treatments. We also provide some pictures to ease identification of the infection

Yeast Infection in Dogs

Yeast is a general term used to describe single-celled fungus that are known to reproduce by budding where budding is the gender-less process of reproduction in which a portion of an organism’s body cell cuts off to form a new and separate organism. The yeast species that affects dogs is known as Malassezia pachydermatis. Normally these reside on the skin of the dog without causing problems. However, when the environment is favorable, they reproduce uncontrollably leading to infections and diseases in the host.

All dogs irrespective of their age, gender or breed are vulnerable to yeast infections. Yeast infection on the skin occurs where predisposing factors such as moisture, warmth and humidity are accelerated. Additionally, obesity, exaggerated skin folds and inflammation on ears and skin could cause the condition.

The infection could appear as a secondary infection in dogs suffering health conditions such as immunosuppression, hypothyroidism. According to vmcli.com, the condition is not contagious to other dogs or humans.

Yeast Infection in Dog Paws

Dogs only produce sweat on areas that are not covered by fur such as the nose and the paws. As a result, the paws provide a moist and warm environment favorable for the proliferation of yeast.

A dog with yeast infection on their paws may produce a pungent smell. They will chew at and excessively lick their paws too. Dogs with a yeast infection may emit a pungent smell and walk with a limp where the cases are severe. However, in mild cases, only itchy symptoms may be observed.

Yeast Infection in Dogs Paws Pictures

To better understand and know how to distinguish yeast infection in dog paws, here are some pictures of the same.

Yeast infection in dog paws
A slightly infected dog paw
severe yeast infection in dog paws
A severely infected dog paw

Causes of Yeast Infection in Dog Paws

Some dogs are more predisposed to yeast infections that others. Some of the things known to contribute to yeast infection in dog paws include:

  • Prolonged and uncontrolled exposure to a humid and hot environment
  • Bites from and allergic reactions to fleas, ticks, mites and other external parasites.
  • Allergic reactions to food
  • Dietary deficiency and poor nutrition
  • Prolonged use of medicines such as antibiotics and corticosteroids leading to a suppression of the dog’s immunity.
  • Disorders of the endocrine system
  • Immune suppressive illnesses
  • Changes in environmental factors
  • chemotherapy

Yeast infection in Dog Paws Symptoms and Signs

Yeast can live on the dog’s body without causing any problems. This, though, changes when the yeast multiplies and invade areas on the dog’s skin that they colonize and cause discomfort and damage. Where there is proliferation of the yeast, the signs and symptoms likely to be observed include those listed below.

  • Extremely itchy skin
  • Rubbing, licking, biting or chewing of the skin around the paws. If this continues for too long the dog could suffer weeping sores around the affected area.
  • Skin inflammation, irritation and redness between the paw pads.
  • Loss of hair
  • An offensive smell coming from the infected paws
  • Thickening of the skin on the paws causing raised and crusty patches
  • Hyperpigmentation
  • In severe cases, the pain and itch will result in behavioral changes, depression, anxiety, loss of appetite, weight loss and aggression.

When there is a yeast overgrowth, the oil production from the hair follicles increases. This is what causes excessive itchiness and other associated symptoms such as licking aimed at relieving the itch.

The self-relieving techniques result in trauma on the skin which in turn results in raw sores. These provide an excellent environment for further growth of yeast. To protect your dog from these, it is important to disrupt the cycle before it becomes severe.

Yeast Infection in Dog Paws Home Remedies and Treatments

Like stated above, yeast infection occurs when there is an uncontrollable reproduction. To treat this, a pet is required to put into place mechanisms that will control it. This can be achieved by altering the environment in which they are inhabiting. Here are various methods on yeast infection on dog paws home remedies as well as treatments.

1.      Dietary Changes

When it comes to treating yeast infection in dog paws, Dr. Karen Becker from Mercola.com suggests making dietary changes. A dog’s diet forms the foundation of his health evaluating what you have been feeding him can help resolve yeast infections. Diets that include too much carbohydrates and sugars should be eliminated as they favor the reproduction of yeast. Switch to diets with high amounts of proteins instead.  Cut out people food as well as they could contribute to proliferation of yeast.

2.      Probiotics

Probiotics are microorganisms introduced to the body for their benefits. Good bacteria can be used to control and balance the amount of bacteria present in your pet. Acidophilus probiotic can help in this. It will eliminate overgrowth of bacteria in the body thus controlling the reproduction of yeast. These supplements are available in pet stores. In case you can’t access any, use plain natural yogurt.

3.      Apple Cider Vinegar

Organic, raw and unfiltered apple cider vinegar has been known to be an effective yeast infection remedy for dogs not only on the paws but in the ears and other parts of the skin too. It helps to kill fungus when topically applied on the affected areas.

There are various ways to use apple cider vinegar for yeast infection treatment. Dilute each portion of the vinegar with two parts of water. Use the resulting solution as an after bath rinse. You could also use some cotton ball to apply it on the paw pads.

4.      Epsom Salt

Epsom salt helps in treating inflammation and itch resulting from yeast infection. It also has a bacterial balancing effect on the affected pet. Immediately a yeast infection in dog paws is established, use the salt to quell the breakout.

  • In a liter of filtered water, add quarter a cup of Epsom salt.
  • Let your dog soak its feet in the bathe for a while and repeat procedure daily for up to three days or until the dog gets better.

5.      Baking Soda

This home remedy for yeast infections in dogs helps in restoring the pH levels on the skin thus creating an unfavorable environment for the yeast. Add a tablespoon of baking soda for every liter of your pooch’s bath water. Use this treatment every day for a week.

6.      Turmeric

As a natural anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory agent, turmeric can help treat yeast infection in dog paws. The remedy is easy to use as you could just sprinkle some turmeric powder on the paw pad and ley the dog be. Using turmeric paste is another option. Mix the powder with water until a consistent paste forms. Apply this on the feet and allow it rest.

7.      Frequent Baths

Although bathing your dog too much could cause their skin to dry, it is recommended that you adopt more frequent baths for a dog whose yeast infection is intensely itchy and smelly. This will help provide relief from the symptoms. Use an anti-itch dog shampoo while at it to help get rid of the dog yeast infection discomfort.

8.      Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is made up of various elements that give it antibacterial, anti-fungal and antiviral properties. These help in treating and preventing yeast overgrowth. The oil can be incorporated in the dogs diet or applied topically.

With these home treatments, the yeast infection in dog paws should keep getting better before clearing up eventually. Where this is not observed, see your veterinarian.

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