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Why Are Dog Noses Wet?

Does a wet nose always mean a healthy dog? Should you be worried if your dog has a really dry nose?

Dr. Mel answers these common questions...


"There’s an old wives tale that if your dogs nose is dry they must be sick. Well it’s not quite that simple.

If you look at Teddy’s nose at the moment it kind of looks wet. The reason it looks wet is because his tongue comes up and licks his nose but also he has some glands in his nose that keep the moist area at the front looking the way it does. If those glands don’t work the nose will look dry and it doesn’t matter how many times a dogs licks it. When we see dogs in here that are depressed and off colour and feeling a bit sick they wont have the energy to lick their nose so they can look a little bit dry but I’ve seen dogs that are really ill that have a moist looking nose so it’s definitely not a reliable indicator.

Things to look at more are whether they are eating like they would normally eat, have the normal energy levels and whether they look bright and interested in things. If the dog does have a dry nose though it could be that they’ve got a nerve problem and the nerve that tells the glands near the nose to produce lubricating material aren’t working so you might need to see the vet to look into that because that can affect the eyes as well."