What is the cause of calluses on dog’s elbows?

I have had 2 dogs over the years that developed calluses on their elbows. Strange enough they were both large Lab mixes. Our other mid sized and smaller dogs did not have those types of calluses. After looking more into the matter I discovered that it is the dog’s weight on the elbows while they are laying down on hard surfaces that causes the damage. I also found out that it is not recommended to have the calluses removed as it would only cause more deeper tissue problems. The calluses form from damaged tissue that forms to protect the underlying bone from damage.

There are products on the market that claim to prevent or cure the problem including the elbow protectors pictured below and this Foot Pad and Elbow Cream for Dogs


The best cure and prevention is to provide a soft area for the dog to rest and sleep. You don’t have to go overboard and get the dog a sleep number bed but they do require a surface that gives to the pressure of their body’s weight.

Pups will start to develop elbow calluses at a young age unless you prevent them.


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