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Animal Skin and Allergy Clinic Blog

Why Does My Dog Slobber So Much?

Dog drooling.

Dogs and drool are kind of an iconic pairing. From Turner and Hooch to Beethoven, the topic of dog slobber is often breached in the media. 

While some canine companions are a little more, er, moist, than others, drool is not necessarily a bad thing. Animal Skin and Allergy Clinic wants our clientele to understand that dog slobber is actually pretty important and doesn’t have to be a deal-breaker for dog lovers. 

What’s With All the Dog Slobber?

Most drool is normal. Dogs produce saliva just as we do to help moisten food and jumpstart the digestion process. Drool also helps to maintain a healthy environment for the teeth and gums. When temperatures rise, drool also helps to cool our dogs.

Created by salivary glands within the mouth itself, dog saliva is produced in small amounts all the time. Increased salivation may be stimulated by the sights, smells, and sounds of food. 

Some dogs may produce more saliva than others, and certain breeds seem to have thicker mucus to share due to their loose lips that don’t keep the secretions contained. 

Breeds that are known for their drool production include:

  • Newfoundlands
  • Saint Bernards
  • Boxers
  • Basset Hounds
  • Mastiffs
  • Bloodhounds
  • Bulldogs
  • Dogue de Bordeaux
  • Bernese Mountain Dogs

What to Do With Drool

Dog slobber is, to some extent, something that pet owners should be prepared for (especially if you have chosen a particularly drooly breed).

Using a drool rag to clean your pet’s mouth frequently can be helpful. A bandana can also make a cute, functional accessory. There are some fun, custom doggie bibs available on sites like Etsy as well. 

Your dog may also need you to clean the moist areas around the mouth frequently as this moist environment may lead to a skin infection in the lip folds. You may need to keep this fur-trimmed on longer-haired breeds to avoid holding the moisture against the skin. 

You may also notice that your dog’s saliva stains the fur, particularly if the hair is light-colored. Reddish-brown color changes around the mouth may be noted. Dogs who are licking their paws a lot due to allergies or other irritation may also have color changes of the feet. This is because, with exposure to oxygen, dried saliva oxidizes (like rust on iron).

Sometimes, though, drool is not normal. Especially if your pet is suddenly slobbering a lot more than usual, increased drooling should be noted. An increase in dog slobber may be caused by things like:

  • Nausea
  • Anxiety
  • Oral irritation
  • Dental disease
  • A blockage in the mouth or esophagus
  • Upper respiratory infections
  • Overheating

A sudden change in the amount of dog drool in your dog’s life warrants contacting us. We can perform a physical examination to get to the bottom of what might be causing your pet’s problem. Some causes of hypersalivation are benign, but some can be serious. You don’t want to delay seeking care. 

While slobber may be a part of the life of a dog parent, there are certainly things that you can do to make it more tolerable. Dogs may drool, but they also rule.