What Is A Booger?
When you break it down a booger is nothing more than a combination of naturally occurring mucus, dirt, pollen, dust, and other debris in noses that collects together and dries up. They are not harmful, or necessarily a sign of some sort of medical condition. So yes, dogs can get these boogers too, if the mucus in their nasal passage dries up. This happens less frequently in dogs than humans for some interesting reasons, for that we need to get into the anatomy of a dog’s nose a little bit more.
The Role Of The Nose In Dogs
It helps them smell, really really well. Dogs have something in the range of 200 million smell receptors, in comparison us humans have 5 million. The wetness on a dog’s nose actually helps them smell, it’s a mucous membrane that absorbs particles and absorbs them into the skin of the nose to be smelled. It is truly fascinating stuff.
Their nose also helps them regulate their temperature. Dogs shed temperature by sweating through the pads of their paws, panting, and dispelling heat through that wetness on their nose. Neat stuff!
Why Is My Dogs Nose Wet?
A wet nose on a dog is very common and a very natural occurrence. The wetness of their noses is important for them to smell things. The wetness is actually a mucous membrane, very thin, that absorbs particles and allows their 200 million receptors to smell, well smells! Also, this membrane helps dogs to regulate their temperature by transferring heat away from their bodies.
On a side note real quick, it’s important to make sure to take care of your dog and protect them from Fleas & Ticks:
Here are some options for Flea and Tick Control, if you need these as well, that you can pick up from Amazon.
If My Dogs Nose Is Dry Does That Mean They Are Sick?
Not at all. This is actually a very common misconception. Active dogs typically have a wetter nose, and your dogs nose might be wetter when it outside playing, exploring or on a walk. A dry nose usually occurs when they are relaxing, sleeping, and being couch potatoes. Especially if in a colder enviroment where they are trying to retain their body heat. Usually not a concern at all, and usually doesn’t mean their sick. If you have a concern, make sure to consult your vetrinarian.
Runny Nose & Nasal Discharge
It’s generally normal for dogs to have some kind of nasal fluid come out of their noses. Dogs actually like this fluid to process the particles in it to other sensory receptors that live in their mouths. This adds to the sense of smell! If the fluid is not excessive or happening all the time and is clear, generally it is ok.
Causes of concern and you will want the advice of your vet come into play when a dog’s nasal discharge falls into one of these categories:
- Yellow or Green in color
- Excessive, (happens constantly)
Causes for a runny nose can be anything from bengin like allergies to something serious like upper respritory infection or cancer. If there is every a concern, consult a vet / dog medical professional. Giving advice over the internet on specific situations is pretty hard / impossible.
If you find your dog sneezes a lot due to allergies, I found having an air purifier in the house, especially in the room they sleep in overnight to be a really effective solution!
Why Does My Dogs Nose Change Color?
As a last note on noses, you might notice and wonder why your dog’s nose changes color occasionally.
Mostly this is due to sun exposure or change of season. It really depends on the breed, but a sunburn can cause a reddish tinge to occur espeically if they have a light-colored nose. When the seasons change to winter months, some dog’s nose may change from black to brown to almost pink during colder winter months, this condition is called snow nose and is perfectly normal.
Sometimes dogs can have skin allergies on their noses to plastic food dishes, and other environmental items as well.
If you notice their nose becoming scaly, inflammation of the skin on the nose or face, it is a cause of concern and you should consult your vet right away.