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Dr. Peter
Dr. Peter, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 28109
Experience:  16 years of internal medicine, surgery, and preventive care.
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My 6 yr old Basset has one blackened nipple. Should I be

Customer Question

My 6 yr old Basset has one blackened nipple. Should I be worried & have it biopsied?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Peter replied 1 year ago.

Welcome and thanks for asking your question. I am sorry the expert you requested is not available. My name is***** am a licensed veterinarian. I am happy to answer your question today. First I need to ask you a few questions so that I can be well informed and give you the best advice.
There may be a slight delay between your follow ups and my replies as I type out a thorough reply for you.

1- Is Bambi spayed?

2- Does she have a growth in this area?

3- Is it bothering her?

4- Has she had infections in this area?

5- Is it safe to say that you are 100% certain it was not that color before?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Bambi is a spayed female, and she also had a false pregnancy when under 1 year old. She does not have an additional growth in the area, and she does not seem to be bothered by the black nipple. Also, no previous infections in the area, and all other nipples appear normal, and this one previously appeared normal as well.
Expert:  Dr. Peter replied 1 year ago.

Give me a few minutes to type your answer. Thank you.

Expert:  Dr. Peter replied 1 year ago.

Friend, when the skin turns black it is called hyperpigmentation. This usually occurs secondary to an inflammatory process secondary to infections, allergies, etc. What happens is that inflammatory cells (macrophages) release melanin during the inflammatory response, melanin is what causes the black color. The black color will most likely not go away, it is not harmful just a consequence of inflammation. This pigment change can also occur secondary to hormonal disorder like hypothyroidism, cushing's etc.

Before going in for a biopsy I would recommend you discuss with your vet about doing some blood work to make sure this hyperpigmentation is not secondary to a hormonal disorder like hypothyroidism. If all blood work is normal then the next step would be to consider a biopsy.

Please do not forget to rate my answer - I hope you found it to be excellent. If there’s more I can do, please use the reply tab and let me know. It’s my goal to provide you with excellent service." Thank you for your business and I hope to work with you again soon!

Dr. Peter