A day of outdoor fun can end up with Doggie covered in stickers -- the prickly part of grasses like foxtails -- and in a lot of pain. Stickers can borrow into the skin and cause a lot of pain and irritation, according to Reagor Pet Hospital. Long-haired dogs in particular might be in for a world of trouble, as stickers can get caught in their legs, between the toes and in the hair of the ears. Doggie covered in them? There are ways to remove them without causing too much damage.
Examine the areas first that might be more painful and uncomfortable, such as the belly, face and between the toes. Check both the outside and the inside of the ears for stickers. If you can, pull them free using your fingers. You might have to use one hand to push the skin down -- so you don't pull it while you try to pull the sticker out -- and remove the sticker with the other hand.
Pour some oil -- any cooking oil or even baby oil will do -- in your fingers and then rub it over the sticker. This should help loosen the hair stuck to it. Add more oil as needed. You might need to wait a few seconds after applying so the sticker softens and it's easier to untangle.
Use scissors for stickers that are too tangled -- especially in the case of long-haired dogs, where trying to pull stickers out might cause more pain than necessary. Small scissors -- such as the kind you'll find in a manicure set -- will work best. Gently work your way around the sticker, cutting as little hair as possible. You can also try cutting the sticker in half using the scissors. Once it's broken, it should be a lot easier to untangle the pieces. Don't try this if you have a jumpy dog who might stab himself trying to get away from the scissors.
Scissors are best in areas that are "hidden," such as the belly, the toes or inside the ears. If you start cutting away on the back or neck, you might end up with lots of bald spots, so avoid it unless you have no other choice.
If the skin is irritated or bleeding after you remove the stickers, wash it gently using a mix of water and hydrogen peroxide and a soft sponge or cotton pads. Pad -- rather than rub -- softly. This will prevent skin infections and ease the pain and discomfort.
Take your dog to a veterinarian or groomer if his sticker problem is too much for you to handle.
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