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Issue 159 - August, 2013 (1st Edition) - Page 15

Burned Dog Paws Warning

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Circulating message, which features a picture of a dog with severely burned paws claims that the injuries were the result of walking the dog on asphalt or concrete in the summer.

burned dog paws warning

© Antonio Gravante

Brief Analysis
Walking dogs on hot asphalt or concrete can indeed cause burn injuries and, in this regard, the message is worth heeding. However, the image does not depict such an injury.  In fact, the image shows an injury to Bernie, a Pit Bull that was left stranded on a hot rooftop for ten hours during a Pennsylvanian heatwave in July 2011. Bernie has since recovered from his injuries.

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THIS is why you do not walk your dogs on asphalt or concrete in the summer. If you see someone walking their dogs on asphalt or concrete, PLEASE educate them and get the pet to cooler ground. Do not just hit "like", SHARE this warning too. Thankyou

Burned dog paws

Detailed Analysis

This message, which is currently circulating vigorously via Facebook and other vectors, warns dog owners of the dangers of walking their dogs on asphalt or concrete during the hotter months.  To illustrate the danger, the message features a picture of a poor pooch with severely burned paws.   

The danger described is real. Information on notes:

Dog feet pads have thick, strong skin intended to protect your dog's feet from injury. That doesn't mean your dog's feet are invulnerable, however. Dogs are particularly vulnerable to foot pad burns, especially when walking across hot surfaces in the summer. […]

In the summer, many outdoor surfaces can get hot enough to burn your dog's feet. Asphalt, concrete, paving stones and sand can all get very hot during the summer. Metal grates and manhole covers can also heat up enough to burn your dog's foot pads.

Walking on hot surfaces can indeed injure your dog's paws, sometimes quite seriously.  Thus, the core advice in the message is well worth heeding.

However, the image used as an example in the message, does not show an injury caused by walking a dog on asphalt or concrete. The dog in the picture, a Pit Bull named Bernie, received his injuries after he was left on a scorching rooftop for ten hours during a heatwave. An article on about Bernie notes:

Bernie was found on a rooftop of a row home in Reading, Pa., in the midst of a heat wave July 19. When police found him, the pit bull had severe, third-degree burns on all four feet, and on his back and belly, probably from falling or rolling over as his pads were scorched. 

To look at Bernie today, one would never guess his injuries were enough to warrant euthanasia. But a new stem cell treatment, which required special permission from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), may have saved the dog's life. 

"I would have thought that with such severe third-degree burns on these feet, you would have gotten a lot of scarring and deformity ... and it would have taken a lot longer than one month to heal," says Boyd Wagner, BVMS, MRCVS, and 25-year owner of the seven-veterinarian Wyomissing Animal Hospital, where Bernie was treated. "If you look at these feet now, there's beautiful epithelial tissue—like a baby's bottom." 

Bernie has reportedly recovered well from his injuries.

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Last updated: July 19, 2013
First published: July 19, 2013
By Brett M. Christensen
About Hoax-Slayer

Dog Feet Protection from Hot Surfaces
Pennsylvania Pit Bull Suffers Burns While Stranded On Hot Roof
Pa. DVM pioneers stem cell treatment on neglect case

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Issue 159 Start Menu

Pages in this issue:
  1. Warning - Grapes and Raisins Toxic to Dogs And Cats
  2. Circulating Warning Claims Antiperspirants Cause Breast Cancer
  3. Gareth & Catherine Bull Advance Fee Lottery Scam
  4. Does a Viral Video Really Depict a Snowfall in the Philippines?
  5. Wellness Company Woolies Voucher Hoax
  6. Qantas 'E-Ticket Itinerary Receipt' Malware Email
  7. The Tale of Pastor Jeremiah Steepek and the Homeless Man
  8. American Express 'Online Security Service Notification' Phishing Scam
  9. Dell Computer Giveaway Survey and Like Farming Scam
  10. Tear Drop Monument - Russian Gift to the United States
  11. Bank of America Merchant Statement Malware Email
  12. Disgraceful Hoax - 'All Facebook Companies' Donations to Help 9 Year Old Girl'
  13. 'Disneyland SuMMer Vacation' Free Tickets Like-Farming Scam
  14. MBNA 'Request to Terminate Online Card Services' Phishing Scam
  15. Burned Dog Paws Warning
  16. Tim Tams 'May Contain Traces of Human Flesh' Hoax Image
  17. Spurious Facebook Warning - 'Powerful Computer Viruses Named Trojans'
  18. Big W Samsung TV Giveaway Like-Farming Scam
  19. Siamese Pike Photograph
  20. Circulating Message Warns of Drug Called 'Molly'
  21. 'Confirm Your Apple Account' Phishing Scam
  22. Windows Live - Hotmail Account Closure Phishing Scam
  23. Circulating Internet Message Warns of Rotavirus Outbreak
  24. Facebook 'Graphic App' Privacy Warning Hoax
  25. Harvey Norman Like Farming Scam