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deleted

110 Posts

Posted - 11/25/2007 :  3:39:38 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Unlike past years, I'm being able to run my team alot more this year. So I'm trying to find out how to fit for booties. I bought a set that I thought were the right size (med. for sibs)to try, but they appear to be too small.
Not to be simple, but how should they fit ?

dbseavey

USA
207 Posts

Posted - 11/28/2007 :  05:17:41 AM  Show Profile  Visit dbseavey's Homepage  Reply with Quote
it's better to be too big than too small. siberians tent to have short feet, so it is width you have to check. if the dogs foot can't fully expand when he puts weight on it, it is too small. the bootie should not restrict the natural movement. with long toed dogs like greyhound crosses, you have to make sure it is long enough so the strap fastens at the narrow part of the wrist without compressing the toe nails.
as a side note, make sure you clip your dogs nails; it will save a bundle on booties.


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Cliff Maxfield

USA
2631 Posts

Posted - 11/28/2007 :  07:02:43 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I want a bootie that works well with Dewclaws. At least half our kennel are rescues and were adults when they came here. At over a hundred dollars each and with twenty dogs the cost for removal would be astronomical.
After reading Dr. Vanek's comments about dewclawed dogs in the Iditarod I elected to leave the claws on the last litter we had. Is there a bootie out there thats dew claw friendly?
I go the route db suggests rght now figuring the extra space will accomodate the claw. I've considered superglueing a tiny pad just between the nail and the paw. Actually I've never ever had any problems with dew claws but have had the wrist problems Dr. Vanek talked about with dogs who've had them removed.
Working with many human amputees, I know when the body looses something in compentsates for that loss. Most times to the negative.
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dbseavey

USA
207 Posts

Posted - 11/29/2007 :  7:36:11 PM  Show Profile  Visit dbseavey's Homepage  Reply with Quote
cliff,
i havent read dr vanek's comments, but poorly removed dewclaws are almost as bad as still having them. we also have had bad results with surgically removing the dewclaws. when we buy a dog with dewclaws, or have a puppy whose claw doesnt get fully removed, the only thing that seems to work (and we've tried everything) is to cut a doughnut shaped piece of 1/2" foam (a thin camping pad works)that fits around the dewclaw. then tape it around the wrist very loosely with wide athletic tape, and you can bootie right over the top of it. we fitted 2 of my dad's dogs with them last year, and the foam lasted all the way to nome.

would you please post a link to dr vanek's article if you have it.


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Jerry S

USA
270 Posts

Posted - 11/29/2007 :  9:37:01 PM  Show Profile  Visit Jerry S's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Danny, Thank you very much for that tip. It seems We've tried everything but that.
Jerry

Jerry Scdoris
Experienced Scooper
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Admin

USA
1484 Posts

Posted - 11/29/2007 :  10:07:55 PM  Show Profile  Visit Admin's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Here's the link to Dr Jerry's comments/questions on dew claws:

http://www.sleddogcentral.com/forum/topic.asp?TOPIC_ID=4134

Judy Bergemann
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Dori

USA
765 Posts

Posted - 11/29/2007 :  11:37:17 PM  Show Profile  Visit Dori's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I have contemplated this issue since Dr. Vanek first brought it up and I will still remove the dew claws. I have have never had a problem with dogs with no dew claws, but there have been multiple problems with dogs with their dew claws. I've seen the dew claws ripped out, I've seen them become infected, Plus of course there is the bootie issue. As sprint musher's we probably don't bootie as much, but at this time of year when we're running on frozen ground, or even worse, ice with frozen gravel, we will bootie just to preserve their feet for whatever race we're training for. The old addage of "No Foot, No Dog" applies very well. I have a whole yard of dogs with no dew claws and also no front end injuries. Maybe we are compensating for the dogs lack of dew claws by slowing down in those areas that he would normally use a dew claw.

One thing I have found with booties is that if you line them with something soft they will last a whole lot longer. This year I found a new product that I'm trying and so far I'm pleased. It's a Cordura 500 with a foam lining. It saves me having to add a fleece to the inside of the Cordura. Slowing down will also save wear & tear on booties, but still it is not uncommon for our sprint dogs to destroy a bootie in a 7 mile run. I've experimented with lots of materials over the years trying to find the best bootie and I'm not sure there is such a thing for this time of year. Snow booties are much easier to come by.

www.freewebs.com/dorihollingsworth
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Cliff Maxfield

USA
2631 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2007 :  07:10:04 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I guess it's all what we've experienced. In twenty years- in fact in a life time I've never seen or had a dew claw problem. Our dogs are run on pretty good trails these days. Not much to catch a dew claw on but I notice the local hunting dog people don't remove their dew claws either and these dogs run in heavy brush areas all the time.
I know when you amputate anything any time you compromise something else. It makes real sense to me and I've seen it many times in humans. It only makes sense it happens in all mammals.
Dori you're absolutely right. The booties are the issue. Dewclaws are a natural phenomenon. The bootie is not. Why would we want a Velcro strap applying a lot of pressure on a dew claw? It would be like binding your thumbs before you go to work?
We need a better bootie. I'm all for booties but the way we attach them is archaic to say the least. I trim the dewclaw nail as short as I can. This helps a lot but then the velcro goes right over the side.
Please don't think I'm being argumentative. Dori I appreciate your thoughts, experiences, accomplishments and certainly respect your right to do as you see fit.
My particular problem as I mentioned before is all these rescuses. They are older dogs, most filtered down from good midwest sled dog kennels, both sprint and distance and it would be a lot of stress on their part and moneyon mine to remove dew claws at this point in their lives.
I think I'll talk with Louise at Booties.com and see if we can come up with a more accomodating bootie for dogs with dewclaws. There's go to be a better way. As good as the modern bootie is I just think there's room for improvement.

Edited by - Cliff Maxfield on 11/30/2007 07:35:22 AM
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Dori

USA
765 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2007 :  3:05:04 PM  Show Profile  Visit Dori's Homepage  Reply with Quote
It's interesting what parts of the dogs body different groups feel they can do without. While mushers tend to remove dew claws others crop ears and chop tails. In many cases there is good reason for this such as dogs coming in from hunts with lacerated tails time after time. I've also noticed that Dew claws on a breed such as the GSP are much more useful looking than what I've seen on the huskies. Most of my husky dew claws lay flat against the leg while the pointer claws are a real weapon. They actually look more useful than the toes themselves and the pointers are smart enough to use them to their advantage (opening garbage cans and what not). Dealing with dew claws that haven't been removed as pups is difficult at best. The dew claws I've had problems with haven't been so much from the trails, but accidents like getting over the line or ripping it off on a grate. Poorly removed dew claws are an even worse problem. I think Danny has the best solution, but if anyone comes up with something better I'm sure we'd all love to hear about it.

www.freewebs.com/dorihollingsworth
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Cliff Maxfield

USA
2631 Posts

Posted - 11/30/2007 :  5:09:41 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I dug around and found some pad today. I will definitely do this this season. Thanks folks.
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JM

USA
89 Posts

Posted - 12/04/2007 :  12:40:49 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Cliff
Long ago on the trapline and when most Iditarod dogs came with OEM equipment (dewclaws)I came up with this one. It was commonly used until almost everyone had their claws removed and the "art" faded away like old highschool sweethearts.

Vetwrap..the stretchy stuff two or three inches wide: While lifting the dewclaw slightly away from the leg take two or three turns of the wrap around the leg "under" the claw. Wrap should be snug but not tight and as high up under the claw as it can be without doubling or binding. Let the claw back into it's natural position and continue wrapping taking three or four more wraps around the entire claw and leg..not so much as to be bulky or lumpy but enough to immobilize the claw. Vetwrap will adhere to itself and needs no tape. It shouldn't be so tight as to restrict circulation. Dogs body heat will help the wrap mold to itself and will take the shape of the dog's leg. Bootie over the wrap and the bootie strap will ride on the wrap over the immobilized claw. Vetwrap doesn't absorb moisture and won't freeze. A wet bootie can be replaced without replacing the wrap. Under most conditions the wrap can stay on safely for half a day at a time. This is also a way to repair an already damaged dew claw area...always being watchful for infection.
Old calculation was half a mile of vetwrap for twelve dogs with forty eight dewclaws = 1000 miles...Joe
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Cliff Maxfield

USA
2631 Posts

Posted - 12/04/2007 :  06:18:21 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks Joe.
Last night as I'm standing in the check out line at the local grocery store I was looking at the aray of corn bandages. For a buck you could get a whole bunch of these dougnuts with a hole big enough for a dewclaw to fit through. Hmmm!! They already have adhesive and it would probably take two per claw. Anyway for that price I tossed a couple in the basket. I'll let you know if they work.
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