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Dr Scott Nimmo
Dr Scott Nimmo, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
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Experience:  BVMS, MRCVS. { Glasgow UK }
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My dog is drooling abnormally from one side of his mouth. The

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My dog is drooling abnormally from one side of his mouth. The Right side of his lips are wet and the drool is dripping like a leaking sink. I don't see anything abnormal in his mouth or cheeks and his teeth appear to be fine as well. What do you think it could be?
Thanks for the questionCustomer

This is something which most small animals vets will see from time to time in their consulting rooms. While I cannot diagnose this over the internet I can tell you the following ...

There are quite a few causes of excess salivation in the dog, some are trivial and will pass quickly such as your Weimeraner picking up a toad in his mouth, { I know that this may not apply as it could be winter and cold where you are so toads will not be about but some people live in hot climates }. Others are more serious and will require veterinary attention. Until you know what the cause is then there will be no real way to stop it, if the salivation does not quickly start to pass or your dog deteriorates then you should consult your vet without delay.

However if I wanted to make a list of what could possibly cause excess salivation { ptyalism } in the dog based on my past experience it would be as follows :

1. A foreign body like a stick or fish hook stuck in the mouth or throat.

2. Ulcers or wounds in the mouth.

3. Poisons, like chewing wood with old lead paint on it, certain plants in the garden, chemicals from the environment.

4. Infections, bacterial or viral centered in the mouth, throat or salivary gland.

5. Salivary gland defects such as sialoceles.

6. It is very rare but cancers of the mouth and throat are possible.

7. Dogs very often salivate for an hour or so if they pick up a toad in the garden.

My advice : Open the mouth and look in carefully using a torch or carry this out in an area with good lighting. Look for foreign objects like sticks stuck in there, do not forget the roof of the mouth. Also look for ulceration.

If you find nothing have a think about poisons or chemicals etc. in the environment.

I have to tell you that I have seen a number of cases of excess salivation where I have not been able to determine a cause but they have slowly resolved over a couple of days without intervention or treatment.

Here is a link to a web page which covers this subject so you can research it in depth : LINK

If I have not covered your question fully enough or you would like to ask more I will be online for the next hour or so and I will be at your disposal.

Scott Nimmo BVMS MRCVS
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
We live in Wisconsin were it is 5 degrees, so I'm pretty sure its not a toad or a chemical he could of gotten into. The drooling is only coming from one side of his mouth. If it were a chemical he had gotten into wouldn't it be coming from both sides of his mouth? We held his mouth open and looked inside for any abnormalties. His cheeks, tongue, teeth, & gums look good. On the outside of his lower jaw we noticed there are some small bumps. Some of the bumps look like small ingrown hairs or like small zits, but he also has them on the other side of his jaw where he is not drooling. How long should we wait/watch for the drooling to stop? He has been drooling for at least 1 1/2 hours already. In that time, he eat some food and drank some water, but now it is 12:15am and way past his bed time so he is tired. When do we start worrying even more and consider takeing him in to the local vet?
Hello again,

1. Where the saliva is coming from one side only it could be an infection or a salivary gland abnormality, difficult to confirm this without examining your dog, and even then it is difficult sometimes.

2. This sort of thing is always a gamble, if you want to be 100% safe then you should see an ER vet now however if your dog is otherwise reasonably bright, alert and happy then you would be taking very little risk in waiting until your vet is open during normal opening hours.


Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Thank you for your help and advice. Have a great weekend!
Hello again,

Glad to advise you, many of these cases easily resolve and are nothing much to worry about ...


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