Dogs’ feet are one of their most important and interesting assets, as many catchFred readers have discovered. A puppy is born with fully developed paws that have a high number of nerve endings, and dogs are able to walk, run, and maneuver over various surfaces due to the shock absorption provided by their paws. You may be interested to know that a dog’s feet are comprised of bones that are very similar to those found in human feet and hands. Of course, the primary difference is their highly versatile paw pads.
Different dogs breeds have unusual types of feet. Akitas, Doberman Pinschers, and specific terrier breeds have paws that are similar in shape to those seen in felines. They are very compact and have extra built-in support. Greyhounds and certain toy breeds have feet that are much more narrow and delicate, with short side toes and long middle toes. There are even dog breeds such as Newfoundlands and Portuguese Water Dogs that have paws with web-like characteristics. As you may suspect, such dogs are great swimmers.
Interesting Facts About Canine Paws
A dog’s paw pads are made of fat, which is covered by an extremely tough outer skin layer, provided the animal is given proper nutrition. This thick skin layer prevents foot abrasions, injuries or other health hazards when the dog is running , jumping or walking. Additionally, the fatty tissue does not freeze as quickly as other tissues in the animal’s body. The blood vessels in a canine’s feet are located very close to a small network of veins referred to as venules, which keeps them well heated during winter when the dog’s paws are cooled by contact with frozen surfaces.
Is Your Dog a Lefty or a Righty?
You may also be amused to discover that most dogs favor one paw over another, just as humans are typically left-handed or right-handed. Your dog’s vet can confirm this interesting fact. You can determine which paw your puppy or dog favors by engaging him or her in a few simple activities. If your dog has been trained to “shake,” observe which paw it offers you first. This is likely the one he or she favors. You can also hide a toy or treat just out of reach. The paw the dog uses most predominantly when attempting to gain access to the object is his or her dominant paw. Have fun passing these intriguing facts on to other dog lovers and check the catchFred website often for more interesting information and tips.