How to Treat Yeast Infection in Dog's Paws? Best Treatments

How to Treat Yeast Infection in Dog’s Paws? Best Treatments

Last Updated on August, 2022

Although yeast infections in dogs are not life-threatening, they can be quite irritating for your dog.

So, it is important to know how to treat yeast infections as soon as possible.

Well, in this article you will learn the MOST EFFECTIVE ways to treat your dog’s yeast infection.

Keep reading to know how to treat a yeast infection on your dog’s paws, symptoms to watch for, causes for these infections, and some tips to prevent them from developing. 

Things You’ll Need to Treat a Yeast Infection on Your Dog’s Paws

human holding dog's paws

You can use the following things to treat your pooch’s yeast infection.

  • Antifungal dog shampoo
  • Prescription lotion, cream, spray, or wipe
  • Antifungal pills

How to Treat Yeast Infections in Your Dog?

A yeast infection can develop in any area on a dog’s body, including paws, ears, lips, skin folds, and armpits. (1)

Since yeast infections are not a serious concern, you can treat your pooch at home for most mild cases.

Fortunately, mild yeast infections will fade away within a week by using these treatment methods at home. 

However, if your pup still suffers from infection, consult your vet for proper treatment. 

So are you ready to learn how to treat yeast infection in your dog? 

Let’s get to it!

Give Your Dog a Medicated Bath

girl washing a dog

You can use an over-the-counter vet-approved medicated shampoo to treat yeast infections.

And shampoo treatment is one of the BEST and EASY ways to relieve dog yeast infections!

You have to lather and massage the shampoo over the affected areas when using an antifungal shampoo. Then, let it soak for 5-10 minutes before washing off. 

Many vets recommend using a product that contains chlorhexidine. It is a GREAT disinfectant that kills germs.

Also, if your pet’s skin is oily, scaly, or waxy, it is better to use a degreasing shampoo. It will remove filmy buildups that can block topical treatments from working.

So what are you waiting for?

Use antifungal shampoos and give your pooch a medicated bath once or twice a week.

Apply Topical Cream, Medicated Wipes, and Sprays

You can apply a prescription cream, wipe, or spray on your dog’s infected skin daily.

These treatments can relieve itchy skin and skin irritation while clearing up the infection.

Many antifungal medications contain:

  • Miconazole
  • Clotrimazole
  • Ketoconazole
  • Climbazole
  • Terbinafine

Moreover, you can use antifungal dog wipes on your dog’s paws whenever they get wet or after walking.

And NEVER use human wipes on your pooch, as they may include harsh chemicals that can harm your pet. 

Give Oral Treatments

giving pills to dog

When topical treatments are ineffective, your pup will have to go for anti-yeast oral treatments.

Also, your pooch will have to take oral antifungal medications to treat yeast infections in severe cases. And severe conditions may take several weeks for a full recovery. 

Luckily, antifungal pills are more effective in killing yeast fast. (2)

Just what you want, right?

These pills include:

  • Ketoconazole
  • Fluconazole
  • Itraconazole
  • Terbinafine 

However, the elements mentioned above may cause an upset tummy and harm the liver of your pooch.

Keep Your Dog’s Paws Dry And Clean

Your pup gets its paws dirty throughout the day, right?

But, keeping their paws clean and dry is a MUST when treating yeast infections. 

Dirt is the perfect breeding place for fungi like yeast. So, make sure you wash and dry your pooch’s paws after walking, running, and jumping in dirty places.

After washing their paws, ensure that the paw pads and toes are dry.

Also, you should prevent your dog from licking the paws.

It can create a moist environment if the saliva from your dog’s mouth easily gets trapped between the toes and paws.

So, KEEP AN EYE on them!

Examine What Your Dog Eats

Did you know that having a poor diet may cause developing skin infections?

So you have to be more careful about what your pup eats. (3)

Foods high in carbs and sugars may encourage yeast infections. 

Therefore, you should CUT BACK dog foods that contain rice, oats, millets, corn, potatoes, and wheat.

And it is ideal to feed your pooch dog supplements and antifungal foods that can suppress yeast growth.

Moreover, you should include probiotic yogurt in your dog’s diet. It is effective in treating yeast infections in dogs.

Also, BE MINDFUL of food allergies that may trigger yeasty doggie paws.

How Do Dogs Get Yeast Infections?

dog having food

There are many reasons behind developing yeast infections in dogs. And dog yeast infections develop as secondary problems.

Do you know what that means?

It means that some other problem is weakening skin’s defense mechanisms. As a result, it allows yeast to overgrow and spread. 

Hence, it becomes an infection disrupting skin’s natural balance.

Malassezia pachydermatis is the most COMMON organism that causes yeast infections (yeast dermatitis) in dogs. These organisms are present in low numbers in healthy pups. 

But, when these organisms overpopulate, your dog’s skin becomes unhealthy and infected.

Moreover, you should BE AWARE of the causes of fungal infections to prevent them from developing.

So, let’s check out some possible causes of yeast infections in dogs.

Allergies

Allergies to food, fleas, and environmental elements are the most common causes of yeast infections in dogs.

These allergies can make your pooch’s skin irritated and oilier leading to an infection.

Moreover, allergens like dust, pollens, mold, cigarette smoke, and several foods (that are high in sugar and carbs) may cause an allergic reaction, eliciting yeast infections.

Compromised Immune Systems

vet doctor with a dog

If your dog has an underactive immune system, it may lead to yeast overgrowth and infection. 

On the other hand, an overactive immune system may trigger allergic reactions. As a result, it may also lead to yeast infections.

Therefore, a healthy immune system is vital in preventing yeast infections.

Antibiotics

Did you know that good bacteria on your dog’s skin control healthy yeast levels?

So good bacteria are essential to keep yeast levels in balance. But, prolonged antibiotic use wipes out good and bad bacteria.

When the good bacteria are not present on your pooch’s skin, yeast levels can PROLIFERATE!

And it will elicit yeast growth and infection.

Steroid Medications

If your dog is on any steroid medications, it can suppress the immune system making your pup more prone to yeast infections.

Therefore, a dog’s immune system will not be able to fight off the germs.

Underlying Medical Conditions

Several health conditions can also lead to skin yeast infections.

These medical conditions include:

  • Cancer
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Hormonal problems
  • Bacterial infections
  • Diabetes
  • Seborrhea oleosa (overproduction of oil on skin) 

Poor Hygiene

dirty dog

Pet parents know that dog paws get dirty all the time, right?

So, if you do not clean your pooch’s paws on a regular basis, it will lead to dog paw yeast infections.

Moist Environment

Yeast tends to overgrow in moist environments.

Therefore, make sure that your pooch’s paws are MOISTURE FREE!

Moreover, if your dog’s ears are wet after bathing, water may get trapped in the ear canal, leading to ear infections.

Spending Time in The Hot Sun

If pups spend too much time in the hot sun, it may cause yeast overpopulation and fungal infection.

So, ensure your pup does not stay too long in the hot sun.

What Dog Breeds Are More Prone To Yeast Infections?

Any dog can be susceptible to yeast infections.

However, several dog breeds are more prone to yeast dermatitis depending on their genetics and body traits like excessive skin folds.

These dog breeds include:

  • Shih Tzus
  • West Highland White Terriers
  • Chihuahuas 
  • American Cocker Spaniels
  • Basset Hounds
  • German Shepherds
  • Golden Retrievers
  • Lhasa Apsos
  • English Setters
  • Boxers
  • Poodles
  • Dachshunds
  • Australian Silky Terriers

Signs and Symptoms of Yeast Infection in Dogs

Signs and Symptoms of Yeast Infection in Dogs

Your pooch may display some signs and symptoms due to the presence of a yeast infection. They can be FREAKING ANNOYING to your pup. 

So, as pet owners, you should be watchful of them, right? 

Here are the most common signs and symptoms of a yeast infection in their paws:

  • Excessive and constant licking and chewing of the paws.
  • Cheesy and musty odor coming from the paws.
  • Itchy, irritated, and red paws.
  • Inflamed and swollen nails.
  • Dark brown discoloration at the base of the toenails.
  • Warmth. 
  • Flaky and crusty skin on the paws.
  • Hair loss.
  • Brown discharge from the nail beds.

How Is The Infection Diagnosed?

A veterinarian can diagnose a yeast infection through cytology or by culturing.

The processes use samples from around the affected skin or itchy paws. Then, the vet tests the sample under a microscope to determine if your dog has a yeast infection.

If so, the vet will know how much yeast is there.

If the yeast infection is in the dog’s ears, the vet will use an otoscope and check inside the ear canal. (4)

And the diagnosis will determine if the underlying cause is yeast, bacteria, or both. Once the vet identifies the reason, they will give your dog a diagnosis and treatment plan.

How to Prevent Yeast Infections on Dog’s Paws?

How to Prevent Yeast Infections on Dog’s Paws

Preventing yeast infections involves addressing the underlying cause and reducing its possibility of recurring.

Here are some tips to prevent yeasty dog paws.

  • Give your pooch regular medicated baths.
  • Identify any signs of allergies and manage them.
  • Consider effective home remedies.
  • Give your pup a maintenance treatment regularly.
  • If your dog is already allergic to yeast, the vet may give them an allergy vaccine.

What are the Home Remedies for Yeast Infections in Dogs?

You can try the following home remedies when using at-home natural treatments for your dog’s yeast infection.

But, always seek advice from your veterinarian before using any of these remedies.

A Weak Apple Cider Vinegar Solution

Apple Cider and a dog

One of the best home remedies is to use diluted apple cider vinegar to wash infected paws. A proper dilution changes the pH levels of the skin, making it unfavorable for yeast. 

Since yeast prefers an alkaline environment, an acidic solution may help reduce yeast overgrowth. (5)

REMEMBER!

Use a 50:50 combination of apple cider vinegar and water. And be careful not to apply the solution on your pooch’s broken skin.

Also, dry your pup’s paws thoroughly after applying it.

Coconut Oil

Apply coconut oil on the dog’s affected areas. It is an antioxidant that can relieve the symptoms of infection. (6)

Massage the oil in the infected areas at least once a week.

This remedy can reduce scratching and help your dog’s skin heal from the infection. In addition, this oil will keep your pooch’s skin moisturized, preventing scabbing.

Tea Tree Oil

tea tree oil and a dog

Tea tree oil has inflammatory and mild antiseptic qualities, which can be beneficial to relieve itching and healing infections.

But, BE AWARE!

The oil is toxic for dogs. So, make sure to DILUTE, and it is suitable only for external applications. 

And DO NOT allow your pooch to lick it. (7)

FAQs

Conclusion

So, was it beneficial reading about the ways to treat yeast infections on dog’s paws?

Well, now you know how to treat your pooch’s yeast infection in the most effective way.

If you found this article helpful, be sure to tell us in the comments and share the article with your friends.

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Author
Thomas
Thomas Villalpando is the main author of IPet Guides. He spends his time reading, training, and working with several Dogs' behaviors. You can find more about him here.

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