Why Are My Dogs Paws Red Between the Toes? 

There is a well-known saying that goes, “once you become a parent, you will be worried for the rest of your life.” This applies not only to being a human parent but also to having pets.

You will be concerned about your dog’s eating habits, health, and skin, among other things. Many dog owners have recently complained about their dogs’ redness between their toes. 

As a result, I’m writing this article to educate you on this skin condition. Pododermatitis is a skin condition caused by a variety of underlying issues rather than a disease. 

If your dog licks their paws excessively or has a yeast or bacterial infection, it will have redness between its toes. At this location, you may also notice inflammation or nodule formation.

These are all symptoms of a skin condition that your dog may be suffering from. Let’s go over it in depth.


5 Reasons Your Dog’s Paws Are Red Between its Toes 

1: Excessive licking 

Puppies enjoy licking everything. When you enter your home, you’ll notice them running towards you and licking you. They enjoy not only licking humans but also licking themselves. 

If your dog has a habit of excessively licking itself, this could be the answer. Excessive licking will make the skin between the toes more sensitive. 

Moisture will build up there if it’s not adequately dried, resulting in more skin breakouts. More microorganisms will grow at the paws as a result of this. 

The paws will eventually become inflamed, and redness will be one of the symptoms. 

Because this inflammation is accompanied by itching, your dog will feel compelled to lick it repeatedly. This entire cycle will aggravate the situation.

2: Atopic Dermatitis 

Atopic dermatitis could also be the cause of redness on the paws. It’s an itchy, inflammatory skin condition caused by allergens in the environment. 

Dogs with this condition have a habit of licking, scratching, rubbing, or chewing their paws. 

Skin allergies begin in young dogs who scratch, rub, lick, or chew their paws, increasing their chances of developing dermatitis. 

This inflammatory condition will spread to other parts of the body, including the ears, face, limbs, and belly.

The veterinarian will perform blood tests to identify specific allergens that cause these conditions. 

As the name implies, skin inflammation causes it to appear redder and hotter to the touch. These dogs may try to cool and soothe the inflamed skin by licking it.

3: Yeast infections  

Yeast dermatitis is another name for yeast infection. This type of skin infection is frequently found between the dog’s toes.

Other symptoms include redness, itching, a greasy discharge, and toenail discoloration. Yeast growth between the toes is common. 

This skin surface contains favorable components and provides an environment for yeast to grow and spread across the paws. 

Furthermore, research has shown that most yeast infections are caused by an underlying problem, such as atopic dermatitis. 

If your dog licks their paws and has a history of skin problems, they are prone to yeast infections. 

This yeast can grow even in less nourishing environments, causing skin damage and redness.

4: Bacterial infections 

In addition to yeast infection, dogs are prone to getting bacterial infections as well. 

If your dog likes to play in the dirt, go to the park, or run in the sand, bacteria can easily become trapped between their toes. 

The soil particle will remain there for a few days if the paws aren’t properly washed. It has two negative effects on your dog. 

First, it irritates the skin, and the toes are rubbed together, weakening the skin barrier. The soil is teeming with bacteria that will further irritate the skin. 

This will turn into infection after a few days. And redness is a major indicator of any type of infection. As a result, look for redness.

5: Demodicosis 

Finally, redness can be the cause of a skin disease known as demodicosis. Demodex Canis, a parasitic mite, causes Demodicosis. 

These parasitic mites are found naturally in the dog’s skin, primarily in hair follicles. These little creatures won’t bother your dog if their immune system is strong. 

On the other hand, Mites will have a chance to attack your dog if they are immunocompromised. These mites have the potential to cause severe inflammatory skin disease. 

The dog’s paw will swell, and hair will fall out. The area between their toes will be red. 

Fortunately, if it’s addressed promptly, the skin improves. However, if left untreated, it will worsen over time.

3 Ways To Alleviate The Redness

1: Get it treated 

There are numerous treatment options for pododermatitis. The underlying cause determines the treatment.

For example, treatment is usually unnecessary if your dog has a localized demodicosis (only between the toes and not all over the body). 

It improves over time as the skin heals. Your veterinarian may prescribe Amitraz dip, Ivermectin, and Milbemycin oxime to hasten recovery. 

Treatment should be continued until the skin has healed completely. After two to four weeks, the vet may perform a skin scraping to ensure that the infection is completely gone. 

If a dog gets a yeast infection, the doctor will prescribe topical ointments because fungal infections are difficult to treat. 

It could also be a lack of blood flow, which can cause their paws to be cold.

2: Take him to vet

If your dog has a bacterial infection, the therapy protocol and medications will be slightly different. 

The same microbe that causes bacterial infection also weakens the dog’s immune system. As a result, in this case, a more generalized approach should be used. 

The vet will confirm the diagnosis after a physical examination of your dog and the receipt of lab results. 

In the event that the infection has spread to other parts of the body, the doctor may prescribe antibacterial shampoos. 

Antibacterial sprays and wipes will also be used in the affected areas. In stubborn situations, your dog may need to take antibiotics orally. 

Do not discontinue the medication unless the veterinarian advises you to do so because bacteria are very good at developing resistance to antibiotics.

3: Prevent reinfection and Promote healing 

The third way you can help your dog is to prevent reinfections. Once your dog has had a skin infection, they are more likely to get it again. 

This will aggravate the situation. As a general rule, follow all of the veterinarian’s instructions and protect their skin. Provide your dog with nutrient-rich food to aid in the healing process. 

This will strengthen their immune system, and the dog will fight off the germs that are affecting their skin. It will also hasten skin healing. 

The chance of infection is greatly reduced once the skin has completely healed and a new layer of strong skin has formed. Because of this, consider this the most important step.


Nobody wants to see their beloved pet in pain. They may suffer silently and without crying at times. 

However, observing their behavior and body language can reveal a lot about what they are going through. 

If you discover that your dog has redness of the skin between his toes, don’t dismiss it. There must be a reason why the skin turned red and became inflamed. 

A variety of infections caused by excessive licking or microorganisms such as bacteria, yeast, or parasites could cause redness. 

Look for additional symptoms to determine the underlying cause. It’s preferable to consult a veterinarian as soon as possible to reduce the chances of it worsening.

Written by Brian Rucker

Brian Rucker has been a dog lover since childhood. He has had his Lab Mix with Hound for over 10+ years now! They enjoy playing outdoors together. Brian loves sharing his knowledge about all things dog on this website. Read more of Brian's articles.