Canine dewclaws are sometimes removed while puppies are very young. When they are not, they can become bothersome to some dogs. Because of their position on the foot, dewclaws do not wear down from normal walking. Sometimes they can grow into the foot pad, causing infection and pain. Dewclaw removal is considered an elective procedure in most cases, and is not necessary for all dogs. If you are considering this surgery for your pet, it is best performed at the time of neuter or spay.