Is this normal?

Oba is bitting her feet a lot lately. At first I thought there was something in her paw because she was licking it a lot and chewing on the pad, but then she started bitting her ankle and her other foot. I looked at it, and it looks a little bit pink, but not irritated. I have seen Baroo do this on occasion, but not recently. Sometimes she is very intent on chewing and licking like it is bothering her, but I can't figure out what it would be from. Do you think her paws could be dry and it is bothering her? I remember someone mentioning a cream to put on their paws, but I am not sure if that is the answer. I am starting to think that she is just doing it from being bored or anxious, but when she does it she looks like she is really bothered by something, and she bites more than just one foot. I have started to notice that she has a lot of anxiety. She will get worked up and it is hard for her to calm down. It goes beyond normal young dog energy and excitement. I am just waiting to see if maybe it is just because she is a rescue and has been moved around from home to home and maybe she just isn't adjusted yet. I am hoping she will grow out of it, but I'm not sure. I have seen herbal supplements that are supposed to help with that kind of thing, but I am not sure if I want to try them. Does anyone know anything about them? Is this something I should be worried about?

@lovemybaroo:

but when she does it she looks like she is really bothered by something, and she bites more than just one foot.

Because I this part it makes me think it might be an allergy. Either to food or enviroment

@lovemybaroo:

I have started to notice that she has a lot of anxiety. She will get worked up and it is hard for her to calm down. It goes beyond normal young dog energy and excitement.

can you describe this better, what gets her worked up? What type of training methods are you using to help her calm down?

I would say the licking/chewing on the feet could be an allergy. Apatche, the JRT that I pet sat for many years was prone to allergies (being mostly white, he had very sensitive skin) and that was always the first sign of something being off. I did see it sometimes when he would start licking and chewing and he would get so worked up that he couldn't stop on his own, but it was usually an allergy thing that started it all.

What are you feeding ?

Also, when she seems to be anxious, Don't "oh, poor baby" in a sad voice…use a happy " Are you being a silly dog?" and distract her with a playing with a toy or a walk.
Let us know how it goes.

With C3PO sometimes his allergy would be so unbearable he'd run around like a crazy dog :eek: So it could be agitation from the allergy itself. It all depends on how bad the paws look and whether his behavior is directly after he's been licking/chewing his paws.

Otherwise I would say it's pent up energy & needs more exercise. HTH 🙂

Foot chewing is usually the first sign of a food allergy. What are you feeding? Does it contain grains? Grains are the most common cause of food allergies in dogs though some dogs also develop allergies to chicken or other protein sources.

@lvoss:

Foot chewing is usually the first sign of a food allergy. What are you feeding? Does it contain grains? Grains are the most common cause of food allergies in dogs though some dogs also develop allergies to chicken or other protein sources.

ditto! And, I would guess that in your area tree pollen season is in high gear…my dogs seem to respond to airborn allergies when they are at their highest by being a little itchy and sometimes chewing feet.

I might try a little benadryl when she gets really itchy.

And it could be the start of a compulsive behavior, so if not the food (I would look there first) I would consider this is behavior motivated. Is she getting enough Exercise? Enough stimulation that she doesn't get bored?

Wow, I never would have thought it to be an allergy. I normally feed them nutro max, but I had to get the natural choice last time because the only store in town that carries it was out of nutro max. They have finshed it off now and have been back on the nutromax for a couple days now. I haven't noticed her licking since then now that I think about it. I know the two foods aren't that different, so I will have to look at the ingredients to figure out what it might be. I guess an allergy makes sense, I just never thought it would make her do that.

As far as exercise goes, she gets a long walk everyday, and I also spend at least 30 minutes a day playing with her outside. On top of that she gets bones or treats to occupy her. She does have a lot of energy, but she still has some behavior that I am a little worried about. She never seems to be really calm unless she is sleeping. Even when she is calm she just seems restless and always looking for something to do. Its like she can't relax. She can be resting and then suddenly jump up and try to get baroo to play or go looking for trouble and if she can't find anything to do she paces. She only pace sometimes when she is in the house, but I thought that was always because she just wanted to go out. She prefers to spend most of the day outside. She seems more comfortable there. That may be because the people she was rescued from kept her tied to a tree in their backyard all the time. Maybe she is just used to it. When she gets like that I try to play with her, and that helps for awhile, but even when I know she is tired she just keeps at it. She plays with baroo and when he has had enough he lets her know, but she rarely backs down and it is hard for her to relax afterwards. She also is really bad about chewing. At first I thought it was just because she is young (only a year as of this month) and maybe her teeth are still bothering her, but I think she is getting a bit old for that now. She chews EVERYTHING. Plastic is her favorite, but she will take anything if that isn't available. It really worries me, because I dog proof as best I can, but she still finds a way, and what is worse is that sometimes she eats the pieces. I have to watch her very closely. I know a lot of dogs chew, but I haven't seen on like this before. Not even Baroo was this bad.

She also barks for no reason, or at small things, like bugs or birds. I have never known a dog to bark at something like that. She rarely barks when I have her citronella collar on, but if I take it off she barks non stop at everything. Isn't that a sign of anxiety?

When we first got her I was concerned about the way she breathes. Even after resting for at least 15 minutes she still pants and breathes very quickley. I called the foster about it and she said she noticed it to and had the vet check her out, and she couldn't find anything wrong. She said she has always been like that. From my experience that just isn't normal. She breathes as heavily as she does when she is running, just for a long time afterwards. I don't know, maybe I am reading too much into it and that is just normal for her and I'm not used to it.

Oh, the breathing you describe sure doesn't sound right.
I would have her rechecked by the vet.
Maybe the jumping is physical related…
Good luck and let us know how it goes.

Looks for corn in the food, typically that would be the first guess at a food allergy… then the other grains.. wheat, oats (sometimes, as my Kristii has a mild allergy to oats)... beet pulp....

There is corn glueten meal and wheat flour. Are either of those bad? Other than that, it is all meat and vitamins. That is the nutro max though. I haven't noticed her biting her feet since I switched back though. Maybe she is ok now. I will keep an eye on her.

Is it possible for a dog to be hyperactive? Thats exactly how Oba acts.

There are many things in foods that in one dog can cause allergies and in another nothing. Here's a site full of information and break down of recommended things to avoid in our pets foods

Ingredients to Avoid

My boy can't handle corn.
He gets "ichy" and that makes him very jumpy.
This could be what is going on with your basenji.
I would suggest going down and getting a totally organic food.
Its more expensive, but if it keeps your dog from the vet, its worth it.
Also, they don't seem to have the quality of poo that lower quality foods produce.
Good luck.

@lovemybaroo:

There is corn glueten meal and wheat flour. Are either of those bad? Other than that, it is all meat and vitamins. That is the nutro max though. I haven't noticed her biting her feet since I switched back though. Maybe she is ok now. I will keep an eye on her.

Is it possible for a dog to be hyperactive? Thats exactly how Oba acts.

IMO, anything with corn is a waste and never needed in a pet's food. It is a filler… think about corn?... it is given especially to cattle in the winter to generate "heat"... and no real other purpose. And IMO any corn is bad... Grains are really just not necessary for dogs. Any grains.. but as long as there are no wheat allergies, I would not be to concerned about wheat flour.

And for sure dogs can be Hyperactive....

Thanks for all the suggestions. I will look around for a different food and hope that helps.

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