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Our dog loves winter sports - but after a few miles on the trails in soft snow, he often develops snowballs between his paw pads - usually one big one right in the middle.

Are there ways to minimize / prevent this from happening? I have heard really bad snow buildup can lead to raw / bleeding paw pads.

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2 Answers

well there are many ways to prevent this, the easyiest way would be to trim the hair between the paws. You can also buy dog-sock to put on the dog, the best way if you have seen dogs running with dogsleds. And if you really dont whant to do eighter of thoose options, you can buy paw-grease or paw-vox like "ice on ice". Hope this will help.

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Lots of mushers will 'candle their dogs'. Use a candle and pass it quickly over the bottom of the paw. The flame singes the hairs between the toes and is harmless to the dog. Practice on your arm hairs to get the speed right. Much faster than trimming.

Most dogs hate socks and will chew them off as soon as they can.

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Interesting - 2 years of mushing and I never heard of this technique. But that's why I asked here. Though seems risky. Anyone second this method? (And Welcome) –  LBell Mar 26 '13 at 20:28
I think I saw this in a booklet "How to train Lead Dogs -- My Way" Only place I've seen it sold is was in the add section of a musher's magazine. I never tried it. When the dogs wanted to stop and chew out their ice balls, I'd let them. I found that in training they would chew out enough hair that it wasn't a big issue. But I wasn't racing. I was running 2 week expeditions into the shield. –  Sherwood Botsford Mar 28 '13 at 3:03
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