Most dogs drool a bit, especially at the sight of food. Some breeds are known to drool a lot-they simply have very wet mouths. Drooling, to some extent, is not a problem at all. However, excessive drooling accompanied by shaking, lethargy and excess licking could indicate some serious health issues. Let us study some of the common causes of dog drooling excessively and ways to cure it.
What is Dog drool?
Dog drool is the saliva produced by glands inside your pet’s mouth. It is an enzyme-rich liquid that lubricates the food and helps in chewing and digestion.
Excess drooling – Causes
Excess of anything is not good, including dog saliva. Here are some common causes of excess drooling:
Foreign objects like thorns, splinters or bones can get stuck inside the dog’s mouth or in between the teeth causing pain and excessive drooling. If the object is sharp, it could cause severe pain and distress to your dog. Some dogs do not like their mouth being pried open. If that is the case with your pet, you’d need to take it to the vet.
Your dog might have accidentally chomped on a toad or other toxic food which could lead to excessive head shaking and drooling. This is his way of removing the toxins. Use a garden hose to clean his mouth out. After flushing his mouth several times, get him to a vet immediately.
Injuries and wounds
Injuries and wounds inside your dog’s mouth can cause excess dog drooling from one side of the mouth. Your pet’s gums and teeth might appear dark red or purple, which can be very painful. Apart from injury to the gums, you might also want to check for painful teeth. Hairline cracks in the teeth at the gum line can cause bleeding and excess salivation. Small cuts, mouth ulcers and blisters inside the mouth are some other causes of excess drooling from one or both sides.
Excess drooling along with vomiting and lethargy could also indicate infections. Some infections like gingivitis lead to a yellowish, green or sickly discharge. Most oral infections can be avoided by following a strict brushing routine. Check out our article on how to take care of dog’s mouth for some ways to keep your pet’s teeth and gums healthy.
Extra lip skin
Some dog breeds are born droolers. Their mouth is shaped in a manner that causes excess drooling and saliva to fall out. Dogs with extra lip skin folds just beneath the canine teeth can also drool excessively and they are also more prone to oral infections. Spaniel breeds like Cocker and Brittany spaniels are known to have this issue. The extra fold of skin can be surgically altered to prevent drooling as well as bacterial infections. However, most owners prefer cleaning the area once a day.
Cavities or dental caries in dogs are another reason for dog drooling and licking excessively. There may be tartar and plaque accumulation on the dental enamel which could erode it and expose the sensitive areas underneath. Fractured teeth of course need veterinary attention.
Irregular growths, masses, warts or tumors inside the mouth can also lead to excess drooling. Most growths like warts are benign and go away on their own.
Canine drooling disorder
This is a serious disorder in dogs which can cause your pet to drool excessively- even up to hundred gallons of drool per day! Another symptom of this disease is that the dog will lie down on its back and bark for hours, shaking its legs in the air. It is best to seek medical advice for these symptoms.
When is Drooling Serious?
Excessive uncharacteristic drooling is always a sign of distress in pets. However, some dogs also drool after exercise which is usually normal and resolves on its own. Sudden onset of drooling with following symptoms may warranty a trip to the vet’s:
- Dog keeps dropping its food.
- Appetite changes- refuses food completely.
- Has very red, swollen or purple gums
- Shows unusual chewing habits
- Has bleeding gums
How to deal with the problem
Carry a towel
Carry a towel each time you take your pet out. Wipe its drool with the towel to keep the mouth dry. Some dog owners attach a bandana around their pet’s neck- this way they can easily dry the mouth when it seems wet. This is a stylish and functional solution to excess dog drooling. Make sure the bandana is made of super absorbent material. Do make it a point to wipe down your pet’s jowls after gets back from exercise.
Place a mat under the dog food bowl
Some pets drool excessively at the sight of food. Placing a mat under the food bowl can help keep your floor dry.
Use hydrogen peroxide
For many oral issues that cause excessive drooling from one side of the mouth, wiping with hydrogen peroxide can help. Use a cotton swab soaked in peroxide to wipe down the teeth and gums. Do this daily after meals to prevent infections, teeth problems and gum issues. You can also use alcohol (only if there are no cuts inside the mouth) to wipe down the extra folds of skin behind canine teeth which may be the cause of excess drooling.
Check his mouth
To remove bones or other foreign objects stuck in the teeth, prop your pet’s mouth open with a ball and pry the object out. Most pets will not allow you to do this. So get medical help if needed.
Excessive dog drooling is rarely a cause for dash to the vet’s clinic but nevertheless, it is an issue which you must not disregard. It is important to address the problem and find a solution for it. We hope the above causes and remedies help you.