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My Dog's Feet Smell Like Corn Chips: Is Frito Feet Normal?

Why do dog feet smell like corn chips?

Have you ever been snuggling with your dog on the couch when suddenly you smell a strong odor of snack foods, even though there are no Fritos or popcorn around? Maybe you've zoomed in on the smell and narrowed it down to your dog's feet. What's going on?

Many people think their dogs' feet smell like Fritos or popcorn. In fact, "Frito Feet" is a colloquial term used to describe the odor that dogs' feet often give off.

Is Frito Feet Normal?

The phenomenon of Frito feet is caused by bacteria, especially Pseudomonas and Proteus species, both of which are common on dogs' paws. That's because the feet are one of the only spots on a dog's body that have sweat glands, so there's an increased population of harmless bacteria living there.

Frito feet is a normal odor in dogs and is nothing to worry about.

What If You Hate the Smell of Frito Feet?

Some people like sniffing their dog's Frito feet. But if you're one of those folks who can't stand that odor, you can do two things to decrease it:

  • Keep the fur between your dog's paw pads trimmed short with a hair trimmer. That will encourage air to get to the skin and dry it out.
  • Keep your dog's feet clean and dry. You may wish to rinse them every other day with clean water and then dry them thoroughly.

When to Worry About Canine Foot Odor

Of course, there are times when foot odor in a dog indicates a problem, like a bacterial or yeast infection. In that case, there's been an overgrowth of organisms on the feet that cause skin irritation and increased odor.

If you notice the following, it's time to make a veterinary appointment:

  • Redness or red bumps on the skin of the feet (top or bottom). You may have to separate the fur to see down to the skin.
  • Bald spots on the feet.
  • Rough or thickened skin on the paws.
  • Excessive licking or chewing by the dog at the paws.
  • A wound or oozing of the skin on the paws.

You May Also Like These Articles:

Signs of Yeast Infections in Dogs

Lick Granuloma: Causes, Treatments, and Prevention of Acral Lick Granuloma in Dogs

Otitis Externa: Ear Infections in Dogs

Paw Pad Burns in Dogs

Paw Pad Protection for Dogs

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