Many Dachshund owners lovingly mention that their Dachshund’s feet smell like corn chips and frequently refer to their Doxie’s paws as “Frito feet”.
While some pet parents absolutely enjoy the smell of a dog’s Frito feet, others despise it and wonder what makes their Dachshund’s feet smell like that.
In this article we’ll talk about why your Dachshund’s feet smell like corn chips, and what you can do if you’re not a fan of the scent.
What are Fritos?
Fritos is the name of the most popular and well-known brand of corn chips. They have an incredibly distinct smell that is absolutely unmistakable.
This iconic snack has been a staple at parties and barbecues for over 80 years.
It’s common for any dog breed’s paws to smell like the beloved brand of corn chips, so the terms “Frito paws” or “Frito feet” are well-known in the dog loving community.
What Causes a Dachshund’s Feet to Smell Like Fritos?
Believe it or not, the Frito feet phenomenon is not specific to Dachshunds.
Any dog can have feet that smell like corn chips, but why is that?
The Frito smell permeating from your Dachshund’s paws is most likely caused by a natural bacteria that gives off a yeasty smell.
Some dog paws even simply have a naturally Frito-type smell.
For many people it’s a strong Frito smell, for others it’s a lighter smell like popcorn.
But don’t worry – the smell is completely normal either way.
Your Dachshund’s “Frito feet” smell is most likely caused by a natural bacteria.
All dogs sweat through their foot pads.
If you have a super active Dachshund who loves outdoor adventures, you may discover that their paws have an especially strong corn chip smell to them.
Sweat will become trapped because your Dachshund’s foot pads, and hair between them, exacerbating the Frito feet scent.
Most mainstream dog foods are made with corn in them. If you feed your Dachshund a food with a high amount of corn, that can add to the smell.
In some cases, offering your pup a kibble without corn can reduce the corn chip smell of their feet.
When Frito-smelling Dog Feet Are Not Normal
In a majority of circumstances, Frito-smelling feet are normal.
However, if the smell becomes absolutely foul and it’s causing your cuddle time to be cut short, you may want to see a veterinarian.
A rancid smell could be the cause of a more serious health concern such as:
- A skin tumor on or around the feet, which can easily become infected from licking.
- An injured and infected toenail.
- A foreign body causing irritation.
- A bacterial or fungal infection.
Some indications that there may be a possible problem at hand include excessive licking of the paws, redness and irritation, lumps or bumps on the toes, swelling of the feet, cracked or broken toe nails, or especially moist paws.
We always suggest seeking veterinary advice if you have questions and concerns about your Dachshund’s health.
How to Prevent Dog Feet From Smelling Like Corn Chips
If you’re one of the rare humans who doesn’t appreciate good ol’ Frito feet, there are a few ways you can reduce the smell.
If the corn chip smell coming from your dog’s paws bothers you, try these tips to get rid of it.
It’s not easy to completely eliminate the smell since it’s typically caused by natural bacteria. However, you can try the following options:
- Give your dog a bath using a high-quality pet shampoo. Generously lather each paw with shampoo, cleaning between the paw pads to remove bacteria and debris. This is the most effective way to get rid of the corn chips smell.
- Feed your Dachshund a food without corn. Corn is often used as a filler in popular dog foods. If you purchase a dog food without corn, this can help reduce the Frito feet smell.
- Trim the hair in between your Dachshund’s paw pads. If you have a long haired Dachshund, keeping the fur between their paw pads trimmed can help keep the stench at bay. Fur harbors bacteria, so keeping it groomed will reduce the smell. After trimming the hair on your Dachshund’s paws, give them a nice, thorough bath.
- Change your Dachshund’s diet completely. Yeast exacerbates the smell of corn chips on your dog, and yeast needs sugar as a source of energy. Buying a food that is lower in sugar can help eliminate the smell. But you won’t see pure sugar on your pet food’s ingredients list – it can be disguised as honey, high fructose corn syrup or even sweet potatoes.
- Seek help from your veterinarian. See a vet if the corn chip smell won’t improve despite taking the actions we listed above.
If your Dachshund’s entire body is smelling like Fritos (specifically their tummy), a good bath may substantially help get rid of the smell
.If it doesn’t, you pup may be battling a fungal or bacterial infection, so it’s a good idea to see your vet at that point.
There are some helpful items which you can purchase to eliminate the smell of your Dachshund’s Frito feet.
Certain products can also help decrease the smell of corn chips coming from your dog’s feet or body.
These products will also help if your pup’s entire body is reeking of corn chips:
- High-quality dog shampoo
- A curry comb, or grooming gloves, that can be used to more thoroughly scrub your Dachshund with shampoo during bath time
- Dog deodorizing spray
- Grooming wipes for daily use. These can be used on the paws or entire body.
- Coconut oil to rub on the paws after bath time (coconut oil is a natural anti-fungal)
If your Dachshund’s paws (or entire body) smells like Fritos, understand that it’s not uncommon.
However, if the smell is very strong, has suddenly developed, or won’t go away despite your efforts at home, you may want to have your pup checked over at the veterinarian to make sure the smell is not the result of some underlying medical condition.
Although any dog can take on the smell of corn chips, especially when it comes to the paws, Dachshund’s in particular seem to have “Frito feet”.
Does your Dachshund smell like corn chips? Do you find this Frito smell endearing or does it gross you out?
About the Author: Through her 17 years of owning and caring for Dachshunds, and almost 10 years researching and writing about them, JW has become a respected expert in the Dachshund community. Read more about her here.