Just like us mere humans, there are numerous reasons as to why your pet may be experiencing nasal discharge. Before we get into why it is first important to determine the what.
Generally, you won’t need to be alarmed if the discharge is a clear colour, however, it is important to take note if it appears more of a green, yellow, cloudy colour or has a red, blood-like substance. Also, does it have an off-putting smell? or does it have a strange consistency? If it is one of the latter, then we recommend contacting your vet as they may require a more in-depth diagnostic workup. Always remember, when in doubt always check in with your regular vet.
Causes for a dog to have a runny nose can include:
Allergies are the immune system having a response to a foreign substance that is not normally harmful to the body. Dogs can be affected by environmental allergens such as pollen, mould, spores, and mites. Food allergies, insect proteins such as flea saliva, and medications.
Nervousness or Excitement
Have you ever noticed that your pet gets a watery nose when you are doing something exciting like going for a ride in the car or when they are feeling nervous about something like an upcoming storm? This should typically clear up when your pet calms down. However, if you are concerned then it may be worth having a chat with your vet regarding your pet’s behaviour.
Airborne irritants can cause our pets to not only have a runny nose but also sneezing, open mouth breathing, snoring, and at times laboured breathing. Irritants can include dust, fumes, plant fragments, or aerosol sprays. Nasal mites are rare but also a cause for problematic nasal discharge.
More concerning conditions that can cause nasal discharge include:
If one of the above is suspected then medical intervention is highly recommended. These conditions will require either medical or surgical mediation.
Written by Krystal. Krystal is a Vet Nurse and owner of two German Shepherds and some kitty cats.
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