Is a Dog Foaming at the Mouth Always an Emergency?

Many pet owners are familiar with dog drool. Some dog breeds drool more than others and cleaning up daily dog slobber messes can be a reality for these pet owners. If you have seen your dog drooling before, you might be wondering if there are ever occasions when this is not a normal part of dog life.

Dogs that foam at the mouth can be in need of medical help, but they might also just be showing normal signs of a wet mouth. If you are not sure if your dog is foaming at the mouth or not, there are some ways to decide if your dog’s foamy mouth or slobber is cause for concern.

If you want to learn more about whether or not a dog that is foaming at the mouth needs emergency care, you should read on!dog foaming at mouth


Is Dog Drooling Normal?

Drooling under some conditions is totally normal for almost every dog. This is particularly true with wet-mouthed breeds like Boxers or hound breeds. Any dog might drool when they are eating, playing, or excited. Dogs can even have foamy drool when they are winded from playing hard or when it’s hot out and they have been holding their mouth open & panting for some time.

Some dog breeds will drool or even foam at the mouth when they are playing, running, or exerting. This might seem like a concerning symptom, but if your dog is not acting abnormal in any other way, some slobber that is foamy in nature can be really normal. Dogs have naturally wet mouths and this kind of foamy or slobbery condition does not always have to be a cause for concern.

When Should You be Concerned About Your Dog Foaming at the Mouth?

If your dog isn’t engaged in any kind of activity and is foaming at the mouth while they are sitting still, you might want to see if there are other symptoms that might indicate they aren’t feeling well. Foaming at the mouth can indicate nausea in dogs and your dog might not be feeling well if they aren’t chewing on something or running and are still showing signs of foamy slobber.

Foamy slobber can be of concern if you think that your dog might have been exposed to rabies and this is the most classic concern that animal owners will feel when they see their dog showing this symptom. Rabies can also cause other symptoms like agitated behavior and general illness which will define it pretty clearly as the possible cause for your dog’s foamy mouth.

Foaming at the mouth can also happen if your dog is experiencing seizures or extreme stress. You will want to take your dog to the emergency vet if they seem like they are shaking, panting rapidly, or feeling fearful and anxious. These can be signs of some serious health conditions as well as seizure disorders that require immediate attention.

Another reason that your dog might foam at the mouth is related to oral health problems. Dogs with bad teeth or infected gums might foam at the mouth as a result of the condition of their gums and teeth. This kind of foamy drool will also usually smell quite bad which is a key indicator that oral health is the culprit for the foamy slobber.

What Should I do if my Dog is Foaming at the Mouth?

The first thing that you should do if you see foam on your dog’s mouth and you are concerned, is to look at their overall behavior. If they seem calm, they are eating and drinking as normal, and they don’t seem to be worried, you can watch them for a while to see if the foamy slobber goes away.

If your dog is showing signs of health issues like vomiting, pacing, and agitation, you will want to take your dog to the vet. Foamy slobber can indicate many health issues and it’s often well worth having your veterinarian look at your pet if they don’t seem to be feeling right and are slobbering excessively. While you might have made a trip to the vet for nothing, there is no harm in making sure that your canine friend is all right.

Which Breeds Slobber the Most?

Some dog breeds just slobber a lot and this is normal for them. If you own a Basset Hound, a Bloodhound, a Boxer, a Spaniel, a mastiff, a bulldog, or a Burmese Mountain Dog, it might be totally normal for your dog to slobber a lot every day. Foamy slobber is common in these breeds as well and might not indicate any kind of health condition that should worry you.

If you own one of these breeds, you should make sure that you observe what their normal wet mouth condition is like so that you can compare if you think something is wrong. Sometimes being sure that you know the normal condition of your pet’s wet mouth can help guide your decision to seek medical attention for your pet or to wait and see if they are actually feeling fine.

Contact the Veterinarian if You Have Questions About Your Dog Foaming at the Mouth 

Now that you have learned this information, you should be able to determine whether your dog foaming at the mouth is serious or not. All dogs can exhibit foamy slobber in their mouths due to some activities. This can seem concerning to many owners due to the connection to rabies that many people have been told about. The reality is that it is unlikely that your dog will have rabies and if they are vaccinated, they should not be able to contract this disease.

Paying attention to other health signs and symptoms will be more valuable for your needs than trying to decide if your dog’s slobber is worrisome by itself. Most conditions that are serious enough to need medical intervention will show obvious symptoms besides slobbering or foaming at the mouth. You will almost never have to worry about missing any other serious symptoms that might go along with a foamy mouth. If you have any questions or concerns about your dog foaming at the mouth, contact our animal hospitals in Westville, Highland and Mishawaka. We are open 24 hours a day with compassionate team members that are dedicated to provide great care for your pets. 

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