Do YOUR dog’s paws smell like popcorn?

Do YOUR dog’s paws smell like popcorn? Vet reveals the reason why – as owner’s admit they enjoy sniffing their furry friends’ feet!

Butter, salt, and the slightly sugary scent of maize tickle your senses – but are you smelling a bag of popcorn at the movies, or in fact, your pup’s paws?

Dog owners on TikTok have revealed that their four-legged pals remind them of the moreish cinema snack, with dozens of videos confirming the phenomenon.

‘Popcorn paws,’ one pet lover from the UK wrote in the caption as they took a whiff of their adorable Cavapoo. ‘If you know, you know.’

Another video from account Mia the Springer Spaniel featured an adorable pooch’s paw being sniffed.

‘When someone walks in on me smelling my dog’s popcorn paws,’ another influencer admitted, in a video of herself huddling into her Chihuahua. 

And now, a vet has revealed that there is a surprising cause behind the kernel-esque aroma – sweat.

‘A dog’s skin, much like our own, has bacteria and yeast naturally growing on it, part of the normal skin “flora”,’ Dr Anna Foreman explained. ‘The yeasty smell likened to popcorn tends to be caused by the by-products of these bacteria and yeast’s normal growth and metabolism as they break down fats and oils on the skin.’

‘Dogs sweat through their paws rather than their coats, and so this moist environment enhances the odour produced by bacteria and yeast present in these crevices and folds – much like a human’s armpits! We commonly see this with dog’s ears too.’

Dog owners on TikTok have revealed that their four-legged pals remind them of the moreish cinema snack, with dozens of videos confirming the phenomenon

One owner sniffed her adorable pup's paws

She praised her dog's 'popcorn paws'

The #popcornpaws hashtag has a whopping 12.2million views on TikTok, with videos featuring adorable dogs being sniffed up by their owners

Meanwhile, searches for 'popcorn paws' have risen by 950% over the last 12 months, according to research by the experts. One owner filmed a TikTok with her Springer Spaniel

Meanwhile, searches for ‘popcorn paws’ have risen by 950% over the last 12 months, according to research by the experts. One owner filmed a TikTok with her Springer Spaniel 

TikTok commenters have been confirming the phenomenon, which sees dog owners reveal that their pet's paws smell like popcorn

TikTok commenters have been confirming the phenomenonwhich sees dog owners reveal that their pet’s paws smell like popcorn

Dr Foreman’s anti-infection tips for your pups

  • To prevent infections of a dog’s feet it is recommended to keep them clean and dry, trimming long hair present between their toes which can trap dirt.
  • Feet should be washed after walking in dirty environments, however excessive bathing can strip the natural oils of the skin and leave it prone to infection.
  • Equally these infections can affect the ears too – it is recommended to keep your dog’s ears clean and dry, particularly after swimming. Ears should not be cleaned excessively either, rather once or twice a month with a liquid ear cleaner, making sure to wipe out any excess (and wax) with cotton wool.
  • Cotton buds should not be used in a dog’s ear as sudden movements may lead to ear drum rupture.

Everypaw Pet Insurance’s (everypaw.com) in-house expert added that popcorn paws are usually nothing to worry about, especially if the odour is ‘not overwhelming’ and there are no signs of infection on the skin.

Meanwhile, searches for ‘popcorn paws’ have risen by 950% over the last 12 months, and those looking up ‘why do my dog’s feet smell like popcorn’ have increased by 300% in that same time – according to research by the experts.

‘NO BUT WHY DO THEY SMELL LIKE POPCORN,’ one dog lover asked under a viral TikTok video on the topic, with 5.6 million views.

‘SO IM NOT THE ONLY ONE WHO THINKS DOGS’ PAWS SMELL LIKE POPCORN?!’ another animal whisperer added.

The #popcornpaws hashtag has a whopping 12.2million views on TikTok, with videos featuring adorable dogs being sniffed up by their owners. 

However Dr Foreman warns to keep your nose out for a more unpleasant stench.

‘An infection with pathogenic bacteria such as proteus and pseudomonas can cause a smell in the feet, ears or skin folds too,’ she said. ‘These pathogenic bacteria tend to cause a stronger, sharp, sweet/sickly smell (often unpleasant) than “popcorn feet”.’

The vet added that inflammation and discharge are other common symptoms to look out for in the case of an infection or bacteria. 

The expert continued: ‘Proteus and pseudomonas can be found as part of the normal skin flora, and so their presence alone does not indicate infection.

‘Rather, a change in the skin’s environment (such as a broach in the skin barrier, or prolonged periods of damp/warm conditions) can lead to an overgrowth of these bacteria and subsequent infection.’

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *