Little girl playing with dog in autumn woods

Why Do Dogs Have Wet Noses?

Today’s Wonder of the Day is really for the dogs…and those who love them! 

If you own a dog, you likely know why they are referred to as “man’s best friend.

Tourist with dog in forest

Coming home to a dog’s loyal greeting is incomparable. Most likely, you’ll be greeted with a few barks and a tail that is wagging wildly. You may even get a few playful licks that all dog owners know are the same thing as puppy kisses.

Young man playing with a pet poodle at home

You’re probably familiar with the black, spongy stuff at the end of your dog’s snout if you’ve ever hugged or kissed it. What are we talking? Obviously, the nose!

Dog nose

Dog’s noses are often cold and wet. Why is that? Many people hold the opinion that dogs’ noses should always be cold and wet and that if they aren’t, it means they are sick.

Why do dogs have wet noses?

No matter how small or large and round your dog’s nose is, it still serves the same purpose and is important to every dog.

Cute golden retriever puppy dog playing in the back yard on green grass

They can use their sense of smell to know about their surroundings and use it to explore the world with their noses. Your dog’s wet nose is an important part of their daily lives, whether it’s helping them locate their owner or finding your supper.

An incredible sense of smell

The main reason for your dog’s wet nose is to improve their already amazing sense of smell. Their sense of smell is much better than ours thanks to the millions of scent receptors inside their noses.

Two dogs

Imagine the  thousands of different scents your dog is taking up the next time you see them sniffing through the bushes on your daily walk.

Some say that dogs’ sense of smell is so good, they can even sense human emotion such as fear and sadness.

How does a wet nose increase the sense of smell?

Your dog’s shiny nose is key to their ability to sniff out their surroundings when they go on an adventure. 

Pug dog licking nose against white background

Ever notice how your dog licks its nose after finishing their meal? By removing dirt and replacing any moisture, licking actually improves their sense of smell.  

Regulating temperature

A dog’s nose helps them cool off after playing in the garden in as well as helping them regulate their body temperature by panting. Their wet nose helps to evaporate heat  and lowers body temperature.

Panting dog in summer

Licking will restore the moisture and keep them cool in the summer because the warm air may also dry up their nose.

What if my dog has a dry nose?

If your dog has a dry nose it’s not always a cause for concern.

cute dog sleeping on bed, white sheets.morning

Because they are not routinely licking their noses while they are sleeping, your dog’s nose dries out. Additionally, some breeds (like pugs) may be more likely to having a dry nose because their tongues can’t easily reach it.

Closeup Black Pug Dog Sticking Tongue Out

Long periods of dry nose in your dog may indicate that they haven’t had enough water. Always make sure your dog has got enough of water so that its nose can stay healthy and shiny.

Please seek your veterinarian’s guidance if you have any concerns regarding your dog’s nose.


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