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Dewclaw problem

LittleMushroom
September 9th, 2010, 09:44 PM
I mentioned this briefly in my recent thread that my GSD pup tore one of his dewclaws on the front. We brought him to the vet, he cauterized the exposed quick and gave us 10 days of antibiotics, but also he mentioned that this is just a temporary solution, the exposed quick can get infected very easily, the best option is to remove the whole dewclaw. And since my pup is not neutered yet ( he is only 14 months old), the vet suggested us to have him neutered soon and at the same time remove the damaged dewclaw, but he also said that since my pup will be under anastasia, it is better to remove the other one as well, just in case an injury like this happens to it.

I told him I will think about it. These couple of weeks I have been searching online on how to treat torn dewclaws, I also phoned my friend's vet, talked to the receptionist, she told me the doctors there don't even do the regular front dewclaw removal, they only do the ones on the hind legs since they take less time to recover, and have less function than the front dewclaws. After hearing that, I went into more researching about whether dewclaw removal is necessary or not for GSD breed. All the articles I found online said it does more harm than good.

I wrap the area with vet tape after applying some polysporin during the day, and at night, when we are home, we let it get some air, and put a sock on before we go to bed. Is it ok?

I booked an appointment with my friend's vet for next Saturday to get a second opinion. Before that, I also want to hear what people here have to say, because everybody here is very educated and has a lot of experience. And I trust you guys more than vets. :D :thankyou:for any of your input.

LittleMushroom
September 9th, 2010, 09:50 PM
here is what his torn dewclaw looks like:(

cassiek
September 10th, 2010, 01:48 AM
I mentioned this briefly in my recent thread that my GSD pup tore one of his dewclaws on the front. We brought him to the vet, he cauterized the exposed quick and gave us 10 days of antibiotics, but also he mentioned that this is just a temporary solution, the exposed quick can get infected very easily, the best option is to remove the whole dewclaw. And since my pup is not neutered yet ( he is only 14 months old), the vet suggested us to have him neutered soon and at the same time remove the damaged dewclaw, but he also said that since my pup will be under anastasia, it is better to remove the other one as well, just in case an injury like this happens to it.

I told him I will think about it. These couple of weeks I have been searching online on how to treat torn dewclaws, I also phoned my friend's vet, talked to the receptionist, she told me the doctors there don't even do the regular front dewclaw removal, they only do the ones on the hind legs since they take less time to recover, and have less function than the front dewclaws. After hearing that, I went into more researching about whether dewclaw removal is necessary or not for GSD breed. All the articles I found online said it does more harm than good.

I wrap the area with vet tape after applying some polysporin during the day, and at night, when we are home, we let it get some air, and put a sock on before we go to bed. Is it ok?

I booked an appointment with my friend's vet for next Saturday to get a second opinion. Before that, I also want to hear what people here have to say, because everybody here is very educated and has a lot of experience. And I trust you guys more than vets. :D :thankyou:for any of your input.

Hi LittleMushroom,

I'm not sure if dewclaw removal is really necessary for any dog breed. I know that it is sometimes done on certain breeds more than others when the pups are very, very young. My one boxer, Brynn, has no dewclaws on her front or back feet; but my other boxer has his front ones still. I don't really think the removal of them was necessary in Brynn's case. I suppose if they keep on tearing and becoming infected, how it might be beneficial to have them removed. But, I'm not even sure how often that happens... :shrug:

I have seen breeds i.e. Saint Bernards, that seem to have looser skin and the dewclaw is hanging on very loosely and I suppose it could be at risk of being pulled off. Maybe in those instances it might be worthwhile looking into.

Good luck with the vet appointment Saturday!

Sib.HuskyMom
September 10th, 2010, 07:22 AM
Littlemushroom,
I agree that it is probably more a case of personal preference than necessity. A friend of mine has a JRT who actually ripped off his one front dewclaws during an intense play session with another dog. I remember it being a lot of blood and a lot of pain for the dog, so once it healed my friend had the other one removed as well, just as a precaution to not go through that again.

I remembered that very well and as a result, I chose to have both of my dogs' dewclaws removed when they were neutered as well. I figured that they spend a lot of time running throught the forest and wilderness at our cottage, and I didn't want to risk them getting caught on something and hurt.

Not really sure about the differences in skin and claws between breeds (mine are siberian huskies).

I was more looking at their lifestyle, rather than their breed, when making my decision.

Best of luck. It would be interesting to hear what the other vet has to say.
Although I agree that if you are going to get it done, the best time to do it is when he's getting neutered.

mastifflover
September 10th, 2010, 11:05 AM
I agree it depends on the dog my friends lab would rip his dewclaw once a month he had the front ones removed. Buster only ever needed the vet for his dewclaws so with them removed he was much better off. Just see if it is something that is a common injury if not it may be a one time thing. I would not do anything yet

Dog Dancer
September 10th, 2010, 01:48 PM
My dogs have never had problems with front dew claws, but I have always had the rear dew claws removed on spay/neuter day. I have had other front toe nails get damaged and have to be removed due to rough play mind you. My gut would say if the pup is still having issues with the nail when you take him in to neuter get them both removed.

LittleMushroom
September 12th, 2010, 03:58 PM
Thank you everyone!! I cancelled the appointment with my friend's vet on next Saturday, b/c...:D I met a vet @ Etobicoke Humane Society 19th Annual Walk-a-Thon today. And he even let us to take off the bandage to exam his paw...:thumbs up. He didn't recommend the removal procedure, because the front dewclaw are too firmly attached. And just like Mastifflover said, he told us that unless it keeps happening, there is no need to remove them at all. Since we won't get him fixed till next summer, we have a year to wait and see. And the nail will eventually grow back :)

BTW, the walk was so much fun, definitely will go next year.