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An advanced forum search brought up nothing on the subject of boots, so I'm posting in the General forum. The Performance and the Health forums seem like good places for this thread too, so if a moderator could move it if he/she sees fit, thanks.

I've been having a horrible time finding boots for Callahan to protect his paws as much as possible from salty sidewalks this winter. I have a treadmill that he walks on for the majority of his morning and evening walks when the weather is bad, but we need to walk once around the block before he does his business. The sidewalks in my area are salted, so he needs some protection. Aside from wiping off his paws after walks, I apply Bag Balm once a week for moisturizing. His paws haven't shown signs of cracking or damage yet, but the harsh winter is still ahead.

I cannot find a boot that works well with his front leg anatomy. All of the boots that are straight (e.g. Ruff Wear) usually with two Velcro enclosures at the top, cover not only his front paw but his pastern and up into the forearm. These types seem to stay on on his hind legs, but the front boots slide down his leg past the pastern because they have little if any flexibility to allow for the sharp (100 degree-ish) angle at the pastern.

The most ergonomically viable boots I've found are the cheap Petsmart or Petco brands with elastic mesh and a rubber sole, but they function like socks and will not stay on. They are also not waterproof by any means, so salt water pooling in the boot defeats the purpose. I've thought about purchasing a pair (I'll actually need two different sizes for front and rear) and sewing on another Velcro enclosure along with some type of waterproof fabric, but I wanted to get input from you all before doing all that work. I've sent more boots back to online and local stores than I care to remember.;)

Is there a particular boot designed to protect from salt (so an impenetrable sole of some sort) that works well with bassets? Thanks!
 

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I'm in the same boat, although for some reason we haven't had enough snow this year yet. I have a pattern, and am going to experiment soon on materials to see if I can make some basset mukluks.
 

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I haven't seen any besids the paw protectors....the only thing I could think of with these is applying some sort of waterproofing spray to the material to keep out the water/salt.....you may have to apply it several times over the course but I don't see why it wouldn't work....
 

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having just looked at the petco website, I see that they have paw protectors that claim to be waterproof to keep the paws safe from water and chemicals......might be worth a look
 

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KV Pet Supply has the "muttluks" that we used with (our ATB Basset) Bubba, in South Dakota. Sorry to say I can't tell you the sizes we bought since we no longer have the muttluks, but we did have to purchase two sets in different sizes. We now live in Memphis, TN.

The first set we bought fit his back paws perfectly, but were to small to get on the front paws. So we bought a larger set for the front paws. Bubba's front paws were much larger than his back paws. He hated them, but learned to tolerate them. They stayed on well, and we walked him in slush when things started to thaw, and on very frozen icy sidewalks and streets at 20 below and lower temps. They worked great and we could get him out in the winter without the frozen ground, sidewalks, etc. freezing and burning his paws.

This is a link to KV. Just type in "muttluks" in the search box and "dogs" .
Pet Meds | Dog Supplies | Pet Supplies | Pet Products | Pet Supply


 

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Discussion Starter #8
having just looked at the petco website, I see that they have paw protectors that claim to be waterproof to keep the paws safe from water and chemicals......might be worth a look
. . . scroll to to a product called pawz
Thanks everyone for the replies.

I believe Pawz are the paw protectors you speak of klm? I opened up a package at the pet store the other day, and they don't seem like they'd hold up to very much abuse. They felt like high-quality rubber balloons about as thick as surgical gloves but felt like a dog's nail or ground debris could easily shred through them. Do either of you, klm or henry'smum, have experience using the Pawz brand protectors and could comment on their durability?

KV Pet Supply has the "muttluks" that we used with (our ATB Basset) Bubba, in South Dakota. . . .
Thanks for the details and great photo; it made me laugh. These look like something I'm looking for--something I can use for a long time and wash. Knowing that they work on basset front paws is a huge help. Callahan's paws differ one size from front to back, according to the sizing chart, but both front and back paws land right in the middle of two sizes, so a 1/4 inch off. The linked website states that a snugger fit is better than a looser fit which might cause the boots to slip off, but I'd hate to cram his paws in there. BubbaLeroy, can you recall if you had anything near a 1/4 inch wiggle room lengthwise in the boot, or were Bubba's paws pretty snug in the boots?
 

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An advanced forum search brought up nothing on the subject of boots[/url]

try booties instead

I apply Bag Balm once a week for moisturizing
the problem with bag balm is it soften the pad and on aggressive surfaces like asphalt it is more like to get gut or abraided. for most something like Tuf-foot is a better choice

very few basset are tolerant of booties so be prepaired for a dog that refuse to move with them on or keeps removing them
 

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If I recall correctly, the person who created Muttluks actually was a basset owner. I met her once at a show in Toronto.
 

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Callahan: Gosh that's seven years ago. :confused: I do know when they put weight on the paws when walking the paws tend to spread out, at least Bogie's do. I think I would rather have a little spread room, than cram the foot in the muttluk. 1/4 inch isn't much, plus the strap tightens and helps keep them on.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks again for the feedback everyone.

Callahan: Gosh that's seven years ago. :confused: I do know when they put weight on the paws when walking the paws tend to spread out, at least Bogie's do. I think I would rather have a little spread room, than cram the foot in the muttluk. 1/4 inch isn't much, plus the strap tightens and helps keep them on.
Callahan's spread quite a bit also, so I agree that the wiggle room is better than none.

An advanced forum search brought up nothing on the subject of boots[/url]

try booties instead

the problem with bag balm is it soften the pad and on aggressive surfaces like asphalt it is more like to get gut or abraided. for most something like Tuf-foot is a better choice. . . .
Thanks. I ran a search for booties/bootie and found a lot of great info but still nothing definitive discussing boot brands that work well. I might have missed something still with all the threads out there. I do think the Muttluks look like the next attempt, though.

I've been using Bag Balm on his paws for about seven months now with no adverse effects--even on hot concrete/asphalt conditions. However, I appreciate the feedback and will keep an eye on the pads for signs of them being too soft. If that happens, I'll order some Tuf-foot, and I'll probably give it a try after the Bag Balm runs out anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
BubbaLeroy, could I get your input on your experience with how Bubba walked in the boots and how the boots held up? Did he stumble a bit for the first few walks and then get used to the boots, or did he stumble all the time and just went slower than normal?

I received the Muttluks today, smalls for his rear paws and mediums for the front. They fit the best out of all the boots I've tried-snug but not to the point of causing him any apparent pain.

Although there's no snow or ice on the ground, he wore them on our evening walk for about 1/3 of a mile on the sidewalk. One of the rears came off early on, but tightening them all up kept them on for the remainder.

The entire walk was slow going, and he would occasionally try and trick me into thinking he caught a track in the grass whereupon I would let me veer over there and he would simply stop.:p So it was constant correcting to keep him going on the sidewalk and at a gentle pace. Toward the end of the walk, he was walking much more comfortably and at a quicker pace, although he often tripped up still.

After we got home and I had light to inspect the boots, I found that one of the fronts has a hole worn in the front leather at the seam where the leather rolls up over the poly fabric and onto the top of the boot. It's not from his nail because it doesn't go through the poly fabric of the main body, so it must be from him snagging/dragging the top of the boot when he walks. The rear boots, because they're a smaller size, don't have the leather wrapping up over the top--only the main poly body. One of the rear boots at the same area right in the front at the seam is showing signs of wear that will lead to a hole eventually.

I'm curious to see if this wear was common for Bubba and if you had to mend or modify the boots to keep them in use. I'm thinking I could disassemble the wrap-over leather and sew on a thicker leather wrap or maybe something of rubber. Maybe Shoe Goo would be the ticket? It's seems like a lot of work to modify an already expensive boot, but if he continues to drag the boots in that spot, I don't know what other choice I have.
 

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At first it was slow going until he got used to the muttluks. He would stop and try to shake them off. After getting used to them he trotted along just fine. We never had a wear issue, but his were mainly used in the snow & ice when the temps were below zero. Snow would be much less abrasive than a bare sidewalk.
Bare in mind this was over 7 years ago and they may not be using the same quality of materials used back then.
 

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Oh man I need to find some of this stuff for Penny. We aren't going to have problems with snow and salty sidewalks, but the Texas heat was killer on her paws this past summer. Will the balm work well in the summer to or will it "melt" off? And will the booties make her feet too warm in the summer?
 

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Thanks BubbaLeroy. I think Shoe Goo might be the way to go if the wear continues in those spots when we really start using them, but most of the use will be on ice and in snow. Hopefully that doesn't wear as much.

Penny, I cannot speak for the Tuf Foot topical, but Bag Balm won't melt off if it's given time to soak in. Because it's petroleum based and will get all over carpet and hardwood if the dog walks around before its allowed to soak in, I put it on Callahan when we go to bed; he doesn't get up from his bed at night. By morning, his paws are nice and moisturized with no residue. I've never had Callahan walk in the kind of beating sun heat that Texas produces, so I cannot speak to the problem Mickey points out about the balm possibly softening the pads too much. I picked up Bag Balm from Walgreens Drugs.

As for the Muttluk boots being too hot, I don't the dog's paws will will get any hotter than the dog's back with the sun beating down upon it. Because half of the boot is made of elastic cloth, you can fold it over like a calf-high sock to allow for more breathing. However, with the way Callahan's boots wore down on our first test walk for 1/3 a mile in 29F degree dry weather, I don't know if they'll hold up well on 120F+ sidewalks.
 

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If REI is in your area, you might check out their dog boots. I can't recall the brand, but they were very well made.
 

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I haven't personally used them for Jake or Abby, but I have seen them sold in Cabela's magazines (they sell all sorts of hunting gear and have a dog section). they say they are durable for going thru wooded areas. and also account for the difference in front and rear paws.

Cabela's: Search Results
 

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Thanks for the REI and Cabela options! No REIs or Cabelas around here to fit him in person, but it's good info to have.

Update: Callahan is getting very good at walking in the boots. Now that we are getting snow, he does really well when two inches are on the sidewalk. He's actually getting a little too brave thinking the boots will magically allow him to pull on lead without correction from me.:rolleyes::p They don't seem to be wearing anymore now that he's getting used to them, but I expect to do a little repair eventually. I haven't had any issues with them slipping off either fronts or rears, so I highly recommend them for fellow bassets.
 

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I've used those PAWZ before but i found they were a two person job. He didnt mind wearing them, i found it very difficult to put them on by myself. I needed one person to hold simons Leg still while i navigated the PAWZ onto his "foot". He did look very cute with them on tho :D lol!
 
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