Cat Paw Pad Peeling – Causes

Cat’s paws are an integral part of their body. They use them to walk, run, jump, climb, scratch, groom themselves and even sleep.

Cats’ paws are also used to communicate with other animals and provide traction while walking.

cats paw pad peeling

However, cats’ claws are prone to various health problems such as peeling off. The cause of this is unknown.

However, several factors contribute to it. This article will discuss the possible causes and how to prevent them.

Causes Of Cat Paws Peeling

1. Over-grooming

It can be caused by excessive licking or scratching. If your cat licks their paws excessively, he may get rid of excess oils from his paws, leading to dry skin.

Dry skin makes the fur brittle and weak. When you notice any signs of overgrooming like redness around the nails, bald patches under the nail beds, cracks between the toes, etc., immediately stop the behavior.

Ensure that your pet gets enough water intake as well as proper nutrition.

2. Poor Nutrition

A poor diet can lead to unhealthy hair follicles. Hair follicle infections can result in cracked heels and toe pads. Your cat needs good quality food rich in protein and vitamins for healthy hair growth.

Make sure that your cat eats fresh foods daily. Also, ensure that they have access to clean drinking water all through the year.

3. Protein Deficiency

Dry and pads peeling off may be a result of protein deficiency in cats. A high-protein diet ensures that your cat gets balanced nutrition and ensures she gets healthy skin and coat.

4. Stressful Environment

An environment full of stress can affect your cat’s immune system. The immune system becomes weaker, leading to weakened claws and sore paws.

To avoid stressful situations, try not to let your cat out during peak hours. Try to keep him indoors until late evening not to feel stressed due to lack of sunlight.

5. Genetics

Some breeds of cats tend to develop paw pad peeling faster than others. In some cases, genetic predisposition plays a role in causing paw pad peeling.

So, if you see your cat developing paw pad peeling, check whether he belongs to a breed known to suffer from this issue.

6. Medications

Certain medications can cause paw pads to peel off. Be careful about giving your certain cat types of medication, especially those containing steroids.

Steroids increase blood flow to the area resulting in increased sweating. Thus friction between the footpad and the ground. It results in painful cracking of the feet.

7. Trauma

Cats’ paw pads can peel off due to an injury. After getting injured, your cat’s body releases chemicals called histamines into the bloodstream.

Histamine triggers itching and inflammation. These symptoms often appear on the affected areas, such as the claws.

8. Infections And Skin Diseases

Some bacterial infections can trigger peeling off of the catspaw pad. Bacterial infection can spread throughout the entire body, including the paws.

The most common bacteria responsible are Staphylococcus Aureus and streptococcus pyogenes. Both of them produce toxins that irritate the skin.

They also create pus pockets where dead cells accumulate. Pus is usually yellowish-green in color. It contains white flakes of dead tissue.

Also, cats paw pad peeling off can sometimes be associated with various skin disorders. One of the most common ones is dermatitis.

Dermatitis occurs when there is excessive dryness or irritation of the outer layer of the skin. Dry skin cracks easily, leaving it vulnerable to damage by external factors like cold weather.

If left untreated, dermatitis may progress to other forms of skin problems.

causes of cats paw pad peeling

Remedies For Cats Paw Pad Peeling Off

Keep Them Hydrated

Keeping your cat hydrated helps prevent dehydration which leads to paw pad peeling off. You should give your pet at least 2 liters of warm water every day.

Do not force-feed your cat water. Instead, offer small amounts frequently.

Use Natural Treatments

There are natural remedies available for treating paw pad peeling. Some include

Aloe Vera Gel

Aloe vera gel is used to treat wounds. Its soothing properties make it ideal for use on irritated paws.

Apply aloe vera gel directly onto the swollen paw pad using cotton balls soaked in aloe vera juice. Leave it overnight before rinsing it off in the morning. Repeat this process once daily.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar works well against paw pads peeling. Mix 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar with 3 cups hot water.

Dip in a clean towel in the solution and apply it to the affected area. Let it soak for 10 minutes, then rinse thoroughly. Repeat twice per week until the problem goes away.

Castor Oil

Castor oil is another effective remedy for paw pad peeling. Rub castor oil gently over the affected area several times a day. Make sure to avoid applying too much pressure while massaging the affected area.

Epsom Salt Bath

Epsom salt bath is an excellent way to get rid of paw pad peeling off naturally. Add 4 tablespoons of Epson salt to a tub filled with lukewarm water.

Soak your cat’s paws in the mixture for 20 minutes. Rinse thoroughly afterward. Repeat this procedure three times weekly.

Olive Oil Massage

Olive oil massage is very beneficial for cats suffering from paw pad peeling. Warm up some olive oil and rub it into your cat’s feet. This will help relieve pain caused by inflammation.

Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil is an excellent treatment option for paw pad peeling if you don’t have any allergies to tea trees. Simply mix equal amounts of tea tree oil and coconut oil and then dip a soft towel in the mixture and place it on the swollen paw pad.

Allow it to remain there for 15 minutes before washing it off. Repeat this procedure two times per week.


Apply Vaseline to the injured paw 2-4 times a week. Vaseline is safe when massaged to the cats’ paws, even if the cats lick them off.

Fish Oil

Rub some fish oil into the dry paw pad after cleaning. It is also an excellent way to introduce fish into your feline’s diet.

Cat Booties

Make sure that your cat’s paws are protected from hot, cold, or rough surfaces with cat booties Cats that have access outdoors tend to be more prone to dry and chapped paws cat booties (or custom-made ones) can easily fit an average-sized cat.

Still, you may also need some customized kitty bootie made for your cat.

To keep her indoors- where she’ll be less likely to become injured or encounter extremely hot or cold surfaces or dangerous chemicals. That could injure its paws.

Protein Supplements

It would be best to feed your feline with protein-rich cat foods but stay away from low-quality cat foods that may contain preservatives and fillers.

Get Professional Help

If none of these treatments work, contact your vet immediately. Your veterinarian might recommend additional medications such as antibiotics if necessary.

In addition, they could suggest professional grooming services to remove hairballs and mats from around your cat’s mouth.

Final Thought

Dry and paws pad peeling off is common for cats who spend time outdoors. Happily, many cats recover with effective treatment options.

You should also consult your vet for a thorough assessment of your cat’s condition.