Have you ever wondered why dogs drool?  The thought really hadn’t crossed my mind because none of our dogs have ever really drooled to the amount that it made me curious.  Enter Diesel!  My son had been complaining about Diesel drooling excessively when he rides in his truck.  I really didn’t pay much attention to his complaining until I took Diesel with me to McDonald’s the other morning to get a coke.  OMG!  I couldn’t believe the amount of drool that kept coming out of his mouth!

Dog Slobber
We pulled up to the drive through window and the girl at the first window did a double take!  She was quite amused with all of that icky slobber coming out of Diesel’s mouth!  In fact, she said he reminded her of Hooch.  Do you guys remember that movie…Turner and Hooch? 

We pulled up to the next window to get my coke and that guy wasn’t amused at all.  He took one look at Diesel and said, “He’s drooling.”  Well, duh!  Don’t you think I know that!

Dog Slobber
All this drool got me to thinking…why do dogs drool?  There could be many reasons why a dog drools but the reason I think Diesel was drooling was because he was excited that he was taking a ride in the car!  Since the only time Diesel drools is in the car, I figure it’s because he really likes being in the car!

If your dog isn’t a drooler and he just happens to start drooling one day, there could be a problem. 

  • A gum or tooth problem could be causing the drooling:  Peridontal disease, tooth abscesses, fractured teeth, oral infections or inflammation can all be the cause of excessive drooling in your dog.  Not only can these problems lead to excessive drooling, but they can cause your dog a lot of pain.  You should take your dog to the vet for any of these problems.
  • Tumors in the mouth:  Does your dog have any lumps, bumps or tissue that looks abnormal?  If so, take him to the vet.
  • Foreign objects in the mouth:  Look for foreign objects that are stuck in the gums, tongue, roof of the mouth, between the teeth, or in the esophagus.  If you can’t remove it without hurting your dog, you should call your veterinarian.
  • Drooling can also be caused by nausea:  If this is the case, it could mean that your dog is getting sick. Some dogs will start to drool when their stomach is upset.
  • A sign of heatstroke:  Excessive drooling can be a sign of heatstroke, but usually you will know if your dog is having heatstroke because they will be panting a whole lot more than usual.  Heatstroke is a life-threatening situation and should be dealt with immediately. 

For the most part, the slobbery drool is just something that comes with the dog.  Sure, some dog breeds drool more than others and then there are those breeds that don’t drool at all.  Saliva is important to dogs as it lubricates the digestive system.  The saliva has enzymes that help break down food in the dog’s stomach.  

Dog Slobber
If your dog doesn’t normally drool and starts drooling all of a sudden, you should probably have your vet take a look at him.  It is important to know what is normal with your dog and watch for anything that isn’t normal.  If you think your dog is drooling excessively for reasons other than being excited, call your veterinarian.  It is always better to be safe than to be sorry!

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Filed under: Dog Care

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