Why are dogs noses wet?

A dog’s nose is always wet and moist but why is it so? This property is a unique characteristic of each and every dog which makes people wonder why your dogs noses are wet? If you have a pet dog then you might have noticed this as well.

The reason for the wet nose of the dog has to do with many other factors rather then just the anatomy of the dog. Most people consider it because of the anatomy of the dog which might be true in some cases, but not always.

As you might already know, a dog has the power to smell vast number of fragrances and from a longer distance as well. This is the reason, that dogs are often used by authorities in forensic field to detect clues which are normally skipped by human detectives.

Does this ability of the dog has to do something with the dogs noses being wet?

There is definitely a very particular reason as to why are dogs noses wet and we would be discussing it below.

Why are dogs noses wet?

Breathing habits of the dog:

If you look into the breathing of the dogs, you would realize that the air which is coming out of the nose of the dog is actually humid and warm due to the heat which is inside the body of the dog. In most of the cases, as it is hotter as compared to the air which is outside, Since the air outside is cooler, it leads to condensation and this forms the small tiny water droplets on the nose of the dog which make it wet.

However, in the case where the air outside is hotter than the one, which is coming out of the nose of the dog, the nose of the dog completely dry. This happens specially during the summer season. It only happens at very high temperatures and therefore in most of the cases, the cause of the moistness in the nose of the dog is due to the air outside being cooler than the one which is being exhaled from the nose of the dog.

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Wet nose due to tears:

In order to understand this cause of the wetness of the dog’s nose, you need to 1st look at the way in which the dogs to lubricate their eyes. If you ask any vet about this, they would be able to tell you that the dogs continuously shed tears to keep their eyes lubricated. These tears which are generated by the dog are not in the exact quantity but are always in extra quantity and extra quantity of tears which is not needed by the eyes is passed on internally to the base of the nose.

From here on, it is evaporated but the moistness stays in the nose. In order to lubricate the nose, the dog would be licking the nose and spreading the lubricant. Due to the evaporation, the nose of the dog would be cold and due to the tears which are being spread over the nose of the dog, it would be moist as well. This is another cause of the dog having wet noses.

Wet nose due to Mucus:

Why are dogs noses wetIf you’re looking to the anatomy of the dogs, you would realise that the nose is directly connected to the mucus membrane inside the nose of the dog. This membrane secrets the mucus continuously which keeps the nose of the dog wet.

The reason for this is that when the dog is trying to smell something and when the nose of the dog is wet, the particles which are being smelled by the dog would get stuck to the nose and thereby giving dog a better chance of smelling that fragrance.

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If the dog is having some problem in detecting the smell from the nose when the dog would be licking its nose, the scented particles which are stuck on the wet nose would be consumed by the tongue of the dog and deposited on the olfactory gland which is in the upper part of the mouth.

Wet nose due to sweating:

We humans, perspire through the skin in order to keep the temperature of our body in check. The dogs do not have sweat glands all over their body. They have the sweat glands in their paws and their nose. When the dog has just finished some heavy physical moment, there would be a bit of sweating in the nose as well to control the body temperature and to relax the dog.

That is why, the dog would be cooling down with the help of sweating which makes its nose wet. A dog does not sweat a lot like humans and therefore the nose only becomes a bit moist when the dog is sweating and the dog relaxes itself with the help of panting as well. This ensures that the temperature of the body of the dog remains normal even after heavy physical activity.

Is the wet nose of the dog an indication of something?

Many people associate the wet nose of the dog with a indication that something is wrong with the dog but this is not true because it is just a characteristic of the dog and it does not indicate anything in particular. As we mentioned above, there can be various causes for the wet nose of the dog ranging from the sweating to the licking by the dog itself to the moisture due to the panting of the dog and therefore the wet nose of the dog is not an indication of something and in the same way the dry nose of the dog is also not a indication of problem with the dog.

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Unless and until, the wetness or the dryness of the nose of the dog is coupled with the unusual discharge or some other symptom like vomiting or diarrhoea, it just means that it is a normal characteristic of the dog but if it is coupled with some of the other symptoms then there can be some problem with the dog.

If you witness such symptoms in addition to the wetness or the dryness of the nose, then the first thing which you have to do is to measure the body temperature of the dog because that would tell you whether it is just normal to have that condition of the nose or whether there is some problem with the dog.

So, now you are aware about the answer to the question why are dog noses wet, you would be able to easily observe the condition of your dog instead of having to worry about the wet nose of the dog because it is not an indication of an ailment or a disease in the dog neither is the dryness of the nose of the dog an indicator of any kind of problem with the dog. There can be numerous causes which we have discussed above.