Join in as we create a moisturizing DIY Paw Balm for your dog’s sore, cracked paw pads. It’s simple, easy to customize and takes so little time to create!
“How do I love thee? Let me count the ways…”
Valentine’s Day gives us just one more reason to love on our pups. Not that most of us aren’t spoiling them daily already! We’ve got two easy and quick gifts you can make for your dog for Valentine’s Day. And (hint, hint) they’d make sweet little gifts for your dog-loving friends, too.
Why Does My Dog Need Paw Balm?
I’m going to admit something. I was pretty certain that Chloe DID NOT need any paw balm. After all, we live in a pretty mild climate. We didn’t deal with super cold, icy conditions or streets filled with harsh salts and chemicals. Chloe’s paws looked pretty good during the winter.
But come summer, the extreme heat – especially on sidewalk and rocky trails – made her paw pads dried and cracked.
So whether you deal with severe winters or burning hot summers, chances are your dog’s pads will suffer from cracking at one time or another.
How Does Paw Balm Work?
Paw Balm or Wax works by surrounding your dog’s pads in a barrier to keep out chemicals and keep in moisture.
Think how much your own hands hurt if they get chapped and dry. Now think of your dog, walking on chapped or dry paw pads all day long.
Applying a thin layer of paw balm will help soothe his paws, help them heal from any cracking and keep them smooth. Keep in mind – dogs that regularly hike over rough surfaces will develop some callused areas on the pads. That’s a good thing.
Balm or Wax?
Depending on how you define it, paw balm is a softer consistency whereas paw wax is harder. Both need to be massaged into the paw pads in order to provide protection. Think of applying paw balm as a mini-massage. It may take a bit longer than just slathering on some hand lotion.
There’s certainly no lack of variety on the market when it comes to purchasing paw balm. But it’s also super easy to craft your own AND make certain it is made with natural, safe ingredients. You can customize it for your dog and what works best. Plus, it makes a great little Valentine’s gift for other dog moms and dads.
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Basic DIY Paw Balm Recipe:
- 2 – 4 Tbsp. yellow or white beeswax. We chose to use beeswax pellets for easier melting.
- 2 Tbsp. shea butter
- 2 Tbsp. coconut oil (NOT coco butter which is toxic to dogs)
- 1 or 2 drops vitamin E oil
- Tins or plastic containers for balm
You’ll also need a double-boiler and a bowl or jar to melt the ingredients. A glass mason jar works very well. You can stir with a metal spoon, a wooden chopstick or a wooden popsicle stick.
Heat water in a double boiler. Place all ingredients in bowl/jar and using medium-low heat, melt until liquefied. The beeswax will take more time than the others, so be patient.
When all is melted, carefully pour into containers.
The above recipe made enough balm to fill six .48oz containers.
- The more beeswax you add, the stiffer the balm will be. A softer balm may be easier to apply to the paws, but the harder ‘wax’ has more staying power.
- Beeswax can be stubborn to remove from containers, so consider using a bowl or jar you don’t mind reusing for just this purpose.
- You can add different ingredients to create a tailored balm. Olive oil, sweet almond oil, vitamin E oil, CBD oil, lavender essential oil all have healing properties.
- Make several containers of DIY paw balm to keep at home, in your backpack, in the car or even as an emergency ‘lip balm’ for yourself. But, uh, please use separate containers for you and your dog!
- Some dogs love the taste of paw balm. Chloe finds it irresistible. Try adding a non-toxic ingredient your dog may not find appealing.
There’s no better way to say ‘I love you’ than by whipping up a batch of paw balm for your best four-legged friend on a cold, wintry Valentine’s Day. Let us know what your dog thinks of his paw balm.