While we’ve been taught to treat our dogs like family members, the truth is that they’re a lot like us when it comes to health concerns. So much so that they can be susceptible to some diseases the same way we are.
When a dog has an infection or respiratory ailment, his or her nose might start running — and that’s what people refer to as “boogers.” It’s not something many people realize, but it’s true.
In this article, I’ll give you some tips on how to clean your dog’s nose and prevent him from having boogers. While it’s not the most glamorous topic in the world — which is why it gets asked all the time — there are ways to make sure you’re looking after your dog’s health without having to worry about his nose dirtying all over your couch and carpets.
The medical name for dog boogers is nasal mucus. Dogs produce nasal mucus as a result of their nasal glands moving the mucus to the back of the nose and bringing it up through the nostrils. The mucus could be thick or thin, stringy or watery.
Boogers are the solid, plushy balls of gooey mucus that come out of a dog’s nose when they turn around and look at their tail. This is what happens when a dog gets excited and sneezes, flusters and turns in different directions.
The mucus is drawn out of its nose by gravity, and then it drips down on the ground. Dogs’ noses are packed with tiny hair-like cilia that help with clearing their nostrils. These hairs get rid of most of the gunk, but not all of it.
Healthy dogs don’t have a lot of loose mucus in their noses, but they can still produce enough to make sticky spots on their paws or fur. If they’re healthy enough to run around outside, you won’t notice it — but if your dog has a cold or allergies, this is a common occurrence.
It can also happen in dogs with liver disease or kidney problems. In these cases, your dog might have an infection called rhinitis (which means “nose infection”).
What causes dog boogers?
Dogs do have boogers, but they are not like the ones that humans have. When the dog is healthy, their boogers will be normal. They may occasionally sneeze to clear the nose of mucus.
Boogers can be the result of several factors such as:
- Bacterial Infections
- Fungal Infections
- Viral Infections
- Nasal Tumors
When your dog has a cold or allergies, then the boogers can increase in size and quantity. This may be accompanied by a runny nose as well as coughing.
If your dog’s boogers are different from what you are used to seeing, then you should take them to the vet. The vet will examine them to determine if they are caused by any illness. If your pet is sick, then they need treatment as soon as possible in order to get better quickly.
Sometimes, the boogers are a sign that your dog’s body is trying to get rid of something it doesn’t like. The body tries to trap and expel foreign substances like pollen, grass, or dust by producing mucus in the eyes and nose.
If the boogers are hard and dry, they could be clumps of dried mucus that have come from deeper in the nasal passages.
As a general rule of thumb, if your dog has clear nasal discharge (that is to say no blood in it) and can breathe easily, you probably have nothing to worry about. If your dog’s nasal discharge turns green or yellow or there’s blood in it, that’s cause for concern — as is heavy nasal discharge that causes sneezing or sniffling.
If your dog has a runny nose or nasal discharge that doesn’t go away after a day or two on its own or becomes more severe (more mucus, more color changes), see a veterinarian.
Symptoms of Nasal Discharge in dogs
Nasal discharge usually happens in the winter or at certain times of year (like the summer). These are called seasonal allergies from the dog’s perspective, but humans would call them allergies from ours.
If a dog has a cold, they’ll have runny eyes and sneeze every now and then, too.
Nasal discharge isn’t dangerous for dogs unless it starts getting infected, which is why most vets recommend you to flush your pet’s nose with saline solution or an anti-bacterial solution whenever they seem to have trouble breathing or breathing through their mouth.
Nasal discharge can be different for each dog, be sure to know all the possibilities in order to keep your dog safe.
- 1. Anterior Nasal Discharge:This is a thin, clear and watery discharge that comes from the front of the nose. It is the most common between the three.
- 2. Posterior Nasal Discharge:Posterior nasal discharge is usually thicker and more purulent than anterior nasal discharge. It stains the fur around the nostrils and may even cause crusting in this area. In some cases, this type of discharge can come out of only one nostril instead of both nostrils, which suggests a unilateral disorder in one side of the nose or sinus cavity.
- 3. Bloody Nasal Discharge:This type of nasal discharge usually occurs as a result of trauma to the nose, such as a bite wound or severe blow to the muzzle causing damage to a blood vessel in the nose or sinuses. It can also be caused by bleeding disorders such as Von Willebrand’s disease (a blood clotting disorder). Other causes include foreign bodies
Be sure to not miss any possible symptoms others may be:
- Yellowish-green or purulent nasal discharge.
- Mouth breathing, snoring and noisy breathing.
- Lethargy, loss of appetite and fever.
- Excessive sneezing.
- Nose Pawing.
- Excessive Nose Licking
- Wiping on furniture.
How to treat dog Boogers
The treatment for your dog’s dry nose will depend on the underlying cause. If your vet discovers that your dog has bacterial infection in his nose, antibiotic therapy will be prescribed until the infection clears up.
If your pet has a fungal infection, he will require antifungal therapy, and so on.
If your dog is constantly sniffling, sneezing and coughing, it’s possible that something is stuck deeper in their nasal passages than just boogers. In those cases you should take them to the vet for an exam.
But for more mild symptoms like snorting or sneezing every now and then, there are a simple home remedy you can try before heading to the vet.
The best way to get rid of dog boogers at a glance is with a warm washcloth. Here’s how the process works:
Wet the washcloth with warm water and wipe away any dried discharge. If there is still some stuck in the corner of your dog’s eye or nose, you can use a warm compress or even flush it lightly with saline solution or artificial tears.
If you cannot remove them easily, don’t risk damaging your dog’s cornea by trying too hard. It is best to leave it to a veterinarian for removal.
Are dog eye boogers normal?
While we’ve all heard the term before, dog eye boogers, or canine eye discharge, are actually a fairly common problem among dogs.
Dog eye discharge is caused by either a yeast or bacterial infection of the eyelid. While it’s unpleasant for both humans and dogs, it usually clears up on its own within a few weeks.
If your pup has been suffering from this condition for more than a few days, though, it’s worth taking him to the vet for treatment.
The most common kind of yeast infection is called eyelid dermatitis (or seborrhea). This can be caused by an overgrowth of bacteria and is usually treated with antibiotics. But if your pup has had this condition for a long time and doesn’t respond to antibiotics, you might want to consult your veterinarian about other options.
Other conditions that can cause dog eye discharge include allergies and skin infections. These should also be checked out by a vet to prevent them from becoming more serious and potentially needing surgery.
Eye boogers are a combination of secretions that have built up in your dog’s eyelids. They’re most closely related to the way human tears work, but they’re not quite the same.
In addition to being obvious throughout your house, a buildup of eye boogers on your dog can also make it more difficult for him to see and make him less playful.
Dog Eye Boogers Treatment
Canine eye boogers are formally known as conjunctivitis or pink eye, and just like in humans, requires treatment. The condition can be caused by allergies or an infection, which means you’ll need to see your vet to get a proper diagnosis.
You want to keep these symptoms in your mind
- The whites of your dog’s eyes turning pink or red.
- Excessive tearing.
- Cloudy vision.
Once you know the cause of the eye boogers in your dog’s eyes, there are several treatments that can remove the buildup and clear up your pup’s vision.
If you notice that your dog has a buildup of discharge in his eyes, you should clean them to prevent irritation and infection. Use a clean cotton ball, paper towel or cloth dampened with warm water or, even better, saline soluction to gently wipe around his eyes.
Do not allow the cleaning implement to touch your dog’s eyelids, as this could cause him some pain. After wiping off any discharge you see, dry the area with a clean cloth or towel.
If your dog is squinty and has red eyes, it may be wise to visit the veterinarian for a full checkup and possible antibiotics to treat an infection.
What can i do to prevent dog boogers?
The main way to prevent dog boogers is to keep your pup’s environment clean and free of irritants.
If you have a yard, make sure it’s free of debris that could get into your dog’s eyes and nose if he sniffs or rolls around in it. The same goes for walks — if you see a ragweed field up ahead, cross the street!
You can also help your pooch avoid allergens by keeping him indoors as much as possible when pollen counts are high. This will also help prevent eye irritation from wind and dust.
If you suspect that your dog is having an allergic reaction to something in his environment, try giving him a bath. This will remove any allergens that might be stuck to his coat. It also might help with flea allergies — fleas love dirty dogs!
Dog boogers are caused by a number of things. Some breeds are more predisposed to it than others. It could also be caused by something as simple as allergies. Dogs can also get boogers due to colds and sinus infections.
But not only! Boogers in dogs can also be a symptom of an underlying food allergy, often caused by fillers and additives in dog foods, if you think this might be the case, we also made a list of the best allergy-free foods for dogs.