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Ice balls on paw hair

Ice balls on paw hair

Postby GL » Mon Dec 20, 2010 4:43 pm

My Brit has hairy feet and a difficult time in the snow and on ice because of ice balls that clog her up pretty quick. In just a short time out in the snow she is laying down and licking and chewing them off.

My question has 2 parts. Can I trim the hair around and between her toes? Will this cause her feet to get too cold to enjoy being out?

She loves to go ice fishing with me and I make provisions for her to get up and off the ice in the shanty but she does spend lots of time on her feet after every run to the tip ups.

I am going fishing tomorrow morning and would do a trim tonight if I get the info I need and the trim will help rather than hurt her.

Gary
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby mcbosco » Mon Dec 20, 2010 4:45 pm

I wouldn't trim it. My dog has feet like Uggs and Mushers Secret keeps his feet snow and ice free. Burt's Bees bees wax hand balm works really well too but it doesnt dry like Mushers.

Mushers is good stuff.
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby Brittguy » Mon Dec 20, 2010 5:18 pm

trim the hair the best you can even between the toes.That still won't solve your problem 100% when hunting but maybe it will work when fishing.Believe me she will still enjoy the time with you and will never notice the less hair.
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby ezzy333 » Mon Dec 20, 2010 5:31 pm

Brittguy wrote:trim the hair the best you can even between the toes.That still won't solve your problem 100% when hunting but maybe it will work when fishing.Believe me she will still enjoy the time with you and will never notice the less hair.

Right on. Trim it before ever going into a field hunting. I keep i trimmed out everytime I do the nails as it helps keep the foot tighter and they do less slipping on a wood or hard surfaced floor.

Ezzy
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby GL » Mon Dec 20, 2010 5:51 pm

Thank you!

I just finished what I expected to be a major job. She just laid there loving the attention but my mustache and side burn trimmer may never be the same! Took all of 10 minutes and she actually does have toes under those mops.
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby gittrdonebritts » Mon Dec 20, 2010 5:58 pm

I always trim before the season and usually have to trim again mid season sometimes, nothing wrong with it i tried different types of dog boots and usually ended up losing one or more so now i just trim.

mcbosco wrote:I wouldn't trim it. My dog has feet like Uggs


I think a Britts Feet are a little different than your dogs feet.
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby ezzy333 » Mon Dec 20, 2010 6:22 pm

gittrdonebritts wrote:I always trim before the season and usually have to trim again mid season sometimes, nothing wrong with it i tried different types of dog boots and usually ended up losing one or more so now i just trim.

mcbosco wrote:I wouldn't trim it. My dog has feet like Uggs


I think a Britts Feet are a little different than your dogs feet.

They trim the Uggs when they get them in the mid-west snows. Anytime you have hair there to gather the wet snows we get sometimes, the dogs are in trouble. Same with the horses with the long fetlocks. You have the same problem with mud so you need to keep them trimmed if you want to keep them clean.

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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby mcbosco » Mon Dec 20, 2010 7:33 pm

gittrdonebritts wrote:I always trim before the season and usually have to trim again mid season sometimes, nothing wrong with it i tried different types of dog boots and usually ended up losing one or more so now i just trim.

mcbosco wrote:I wouldn't trim it. My dog has feet like Uggs


I think a Britts Feet are a little different than your dogs feet.


Perhaps they are different but trimming was a good idea before these products were easily available. The original post said trimming "between her toes" and that is just not a good idea. I know a very accomplished sled dog racer and I asked her about this last year. She only recommends trimming the long hair around and behind the center pad but never below the plane of the pad. While the hair does pick up snow, it also prevents snow and ice from getting packed deep inside the foot and between the toes.

That is how I took the question.
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby gittrdonebritts » Mon Dec 20, 2010 9:45 pm

I prefer to trim than spend money when i already have a nice pair of clippers from when i used to clip and fit show cattle, i haven't had any problems with snow getting packed in there since i don't run my dogs as long as a Sled dog would be run, and when switching dogs out i do a total body check before they go back in the box so if anything were to get stuck I'd catch it , but everyone has there system, no one is wrong just different.
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby ezzy333 » Mon Dec 20, 2010 11:04 pm

mcbosco wrote:
gittrdonebritts wrote:I always trim before the season and usually have to trim again mid season sometimes, nothing wrong with it i tried different types of dog boots and usually ended up losing one or more so now i just trim.

mcbosco wrote:I wouldn't trim it. My dog has feet like Uggs


I think a Britts Feet are a little different than your dogs feet.


Perhaps they are different but trimming was a good idea before these products were easily available. The original post said trimming "between her toes" and that is just not a good idea. I know a very accomplished sled dog racer and I asked her about this last year. She only recommends trimming the long hair around and behind the center pad but never below the plane of the pad. While the hair does pick up snow, it also prevents snow and ice from getting packed deep inside the foot and between the toes.

That is how I took the question.

We are talking wet snow that forms balls, which isn't much of a problem in 0 and below temps that they run the sled dogs in.

Ezzy
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby jlp8cornell » Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:07 am

GL- I am in NY as well so probably dealing with similar temps and snow conditions. I have a bunch of friends here that do trim the hair around the feet but also use and swear by Mushers Secret. A friend with a Setter said that was the only product that helped her dog's feet. The dog sled people around here use it too.
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby Hookadooka BirdDogs » Tue Dec 21, 2010 6:35 am

When grouse hunting in the snow I tend to move from cover to cover a lot. In addition to trimming foot hair, I find that a 12 volt to 120 volt converter with a conventional blow dryer works great once the dogs are back to the truck for getting rid of any ice balls. The dogs love it & it makes a great hand warmer too. When my wife discovers her blow dryer is missing, I'll be sleeping with the dogs!
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby Sharon » Tue Dec 21, 2010 12:29 pm

I trim it right down as far as possible , between the toes etc. I find that really cuts down on the formation of the ice balls. Other then that i just keep an eye on the dogs. If starts limping or pulling at its toes , I just a minute and take it out. Not a big deal.
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby GL » Wed Dec 22, 2010 12:36 pm

I didn't get carried away with the clippers. All I really trimmed were the long hairs that protrude beyond her toe nails and the ones all around her feet that don't seem to have a purpose any way. I did not go between her toes at all.

We spent a very cold and blowing day on the ice yesterday and what trimming I did made a major difference and she was perfectly happy to stay out much longer running and playing with out the formation of the typical snow or ice shoes that made her lame fairly quick. I did inspect her feet as soon as she came in and she does still get packed snow between her toes but it seems to not bother her much at all. It was the long hairs that really made her uncomfortable as the ice balls would end up under her pads.

Fortunately with ice fishing from a heated shanty she has many opportunities to come in and warm up while cleaning her feet.

Thanks for the great info.

Gary
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby Crystal kennels » Fri Dec 24, 2010 12:01 pm

Pam or vegetable oil spray (for cooking) will work if sprayed before the dog works........... we used to use it all the time on the horses to keep ice from forming in their hoof wall..........

Judy
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Re: Ice balls on paw hair

Postby Onk » Fri Dec 24, 2010 4:24 pm

Funny I just talked to a worker in a gun shop one town over today about this very subject! He told me make sure and trim it good in Fall and Winter. Also put a strip of baby oil on the top of the neck and all over the paws for cocklebur's! Wise tale? You be the judge!
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