Most dog owners don’t pay close attention to their dog’s mouth. But if you knew everything that the gums could tell you, you might start making it a part of your regular checks. Today we are going to explain what pale gums mean to my Doodle dog’s health.
What Do Healthy Gums Look Like?
The first thing we should consider is what typical dog gums look like. If you have never looked into your dog’s mouth before, it could be challenging to see a difference. But healthy gums should be a dark salmon pink color. They should also be moist without blemishes or redness.
Most vets will even perform a capillary test that you can do at home to check for healthy gums. All you need is a calm dog and your finger. By gently lifting your dog’s lips, take your finger pad and press it into the gum. When you lift your finger away, there will be a light spot that quickly turns back to pink.
Dog’s with pale or white gums won’t change color when you press them. Or it takes longer than 2 seconds for the color to return. Then you might have an issue on your hands. So let’s look at what pale gums mean to my Doodle dog health.
One common reason for pale gums is that your Doodle is dehydrated. If you have a dehydrated pup, the gums will also be tacky or dry. Your dog might also pant a lot and not as active as usual.
If you suspect that your dog is suffering from dehydration, bring your dog inside and provide it with plenty of room temperature water. It’s vital to get them in a cool area to prevent heatstroke.
But you don’t want to cool your dog too fast, which is why you should only give them room temperature water. If your dog doesn’t return to normal within a few hours, you might want to contact your vet for an I.V.
Another common reason for pale gums in a dog is anemia. Now anemia is one of those tricky health problems because it typically doesn’t occur independently. Instead, anemia in dogs is a symptom of an underlying health condition.
Some of the most common signs of anemia are lethargy, difficulty breathing, and problems with blood clotting. But you will also need to be on the lookout for other symptoms and call your vet. With extensive blood tests, your vet can find the cause of the problem. And from there, your Doodle dog can get the treatment he needs to get better.
No matter how careful we are with our dogs, accidents do happen. But while your dog might seem ok on the outside, they could still have damage done on the inside. So any time your dog has an accident, even if it might seem small, keep a lookout.
Internal bleeding from trauma is one cause of pale gums that often goes unnoticed. But if your dog also seems weak, vomiting, swollen stomachs, or collapsing, you need to take them to the emergency vet. The faster you treat the trauma, the higher chance your dog has of healing quickly.
Did you know that one commonly overlooked disease is kidney disease? But one of the first signs of kidney issues is pale gums. When combined with a reduced appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, and excessive drinking and peeing, you could have a real problem.
So why does kidney disease cause pale gums? The reason is that kidney issues also cause a drop in red blood cells. This decrease in blood flow will pull blood away from the gums to give it that pale look.
If you suspect that your dog is having kidney problems, it’s best to contact your vet. With testing, your veterinarian can come up with a treatment plan. A change in diet and medication is often enough to manage the disease and give your dog a long healthy life.
Dog’s often have dental issues that go unnoticed. Gingivitis and Periodontal Disease are some of the biggest culprits in Doodles. Common signs of a dental problem include reduced eating, pawing at the mouth, pale gums, and bad breath.
Unlike some of the other diseases mentioned so far, dental issues can also change the gum color to black, red, or even white. But dental conditions can be easily preventable.
Regular dental checkups and yearly cleanings will decrease your dog’s chances of dental disease tenfold. You can also buy your Doodle dental chews and brush its teeth at home for complete protection.
However, when your dog is suffering from mouth pain, you will want to make an appointment immediately. Sometimes antibiotics or a tooth pulling is needed to resolve the problem.
Fleas, worms, heartworms, and ticks are all icky in every sense. But other than giving you a chill down your spine, they can also cause many medical problems. And they are the most common reason for dogs to develop anemia from blood loss.
Sometimes you can look at a dog’s skin or feces and see the parasites. But there are a few signs like weight loss, dull fur, heavy breathing, and lethargy that all point to parasites. And once you identify what type of parasite you are dealing with, you can treat the problem.
Now you can treat with some of these parasites over the counter medications. In severe cases of fleas and ticks, you might also want to treat the house and yard to fight the infestation.
But some parasites need a little extra treatment to get rid of them. For example, heartworms can only be treated by a medical professional. So always talk with your vet before starting any treatments.
Dog’s are notorious for getting into things they shouldn’t. One of the most common reasons for sudden pale gums is accidental poisoning. If your dog gets into cleaning supplies or rat poison, they can have lethargy, disorientation, vomiting, and even paralysis.
If you ever suspect that your dog has eaten something toxic, it’s best to contact an emergency vet. The faster your dog gets treatment, the better chances they have at a speedy recovery.
Blood Clotting Disorders
Diseases such as Von Willebrand’s are widespread in most Doodle dog breeds. Conditions such as these can cause bruising, excessive bleeding and weakness after injury. And you guessed it, these types of problems will also cause pale gums.
Blood clotting disorders are often the cause of genetic mutations, and they need professional help for treatment. Most dogs will live a normal long life, but you will have to keep a close eye on your dog.
Even the most minor cuts could need medical intervention or even a blood transfusion. So if you see pale gums and your dog is already diagnosed with a blood clotting disorder, call your vet immediately.
One thing that not a lot of people consider is that your dog’s digestive system has a lot to do with their gum health. And one of the most common stomach issues is bloat. Bloat is when your dog’s stomach fills up with gas that causes the stomach to swell and twist.
It can be very painful and also restricts the blood circulation throughout the body, causing pale gums. As always, if you suspect this severe condition, call your vet right away.
If pale gums typically mean poor blood circulation, it only makes sense that heart disease could also be an issue. If your dog has a bad heart, it can be difficult for blood to get to all corners of the body, thus giving your dog pale gums.
Some other signs that your dog might have heart disease are lethargy, difficulty breathing, and decreased appetite.
To resolve this issue, your dog will need extensive testing by a vet. Once they find the underlying cause, your dog can start a treatment plan. And once they start treatment, the symptoms will go away, and so will the pale gums.
And last on what pale gums means to my Doodle dog health is a disease no one wishes. Cancer can happen in all types of dogs in every part of the body, but it is the most common in older dogs.
And one of the first signs of cancer is pale gums on your dog. The reason for this is that cancer reduces the number of red blood cells in the body. With fewer red blood cells, it’s harder for your dog to fight infections and get proper circulation.
If you suspect that your dog might have cancer, it’s best to talk with your vet. They can go over treatment plans or surgeries that might remedy the problem areas.
What pale gums mean to my Doodle dog health is that they need to be seen by a vet. All of the problems listed above are serious conditions and need a vet diagnosis to start treatment. And now that you know how serious gum health is to your dog, you can begin incorporating it into a weekly health check.
Below is a Pinterest-friendly photo…. so you can pin it to your Doodle Board!