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Dealing with a Drooling Dog

Some dogs drool more than others. This can sometimes be caused by variations in anatomy (think of the loose lips on a St. Bernard) or behavior. In these cases, your concerns are aesthetic: how to clean up the mess and deal with the saliva stains on a dog’s fur. But sometimes drooling is a sign of poor health. If your dog isn’t typically a big drooler and all of a sudden starts to slobber, pay attention.

Excessive drooling can be a sign of problems within the mouth. Canine dental disease, injuries, tumors, licking a caustic substance, and foreign bodies lodged within the mouth can all cause a dog to drool. If you can do so safely, open your dog’s mouth and take a look inside. If you find something that doesn’t look quite right, contact a veterinarian.

Problems outside of the mouth can also cause dogs to drool excessively. Nausea, heat stroke, pain, and anxiety may all be to blame. Finally, a potentially life threatening condition called gastric dilatation and volvulus is typically associated with drooling, abdominal pain, a distended abdomen, and repeated, unsuccessful attempts to vomit. If your dog develops these symptoms, immediately get to a veterinarian.

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