Dry Dog Nose Info
Q: My dog has a dry nose – it is crusty, cracked and looks awful, is he sick?
First, let’s address the dry nose issue before we jump into the crustiness issue. We have all heard the old “My dog’s nose is dry and warm, is he sick?” myth. We have all heard someone say that a warm or dry dog nose means a dog is sick.
In actuality, a dog’s noses can be a bit warm and all is well. Just as we may feel a little hot or flushed and then fine in a few minutes, so can our dogs. (No hot flash jokes, I hear you out there!) So, a bit of a warm nose, with no other symptoms of illness is usually no cause for concern. Disclaimer: Of course, lethargy, fever or other symptoms may necessitate a trip to the vet.
If your dog has dry nose, it CAN be cause for attention. Of course, (blatant plug), we want you to get NOSE BUTTER® and take care of any dryness…but first, let’s look at the WHY of the crusties.
Nasodigital Hyperkeratosis – Intense Name for an Ugly Condition
Nasodigital Hyperkeratosis is common in older dogs and in many flat faced breeds. Thick, crusty, hard, dry crud accumulates on the top of the nose, paw pads, or both. The accumulated crusty, dry keratin is usually most visible on the top of the nose and at the edges of the paw pads. This is not life-threatening and is considered cosmetic, but we want to eradicate this condition! NOSE BUTTER and PAW BUTTER are the go-to products to get rid of the crusty overgrowth…not getting all infomercial on you. This condition is why I created this line of products…it all started with Frenchie crusties that did not want to go away!
Q: My dog has little rough points of skin sticking up from his paw pads. The vet said it may be Hyperkatosis. What can I do about this?
The paw pad variety of this is called Footpad Hyperkeratosis. Hyperkeratosis may run in bloodlines and can result in severe digital hyperkeratosis (overgrowth of crusts and crud) by 5-6 months of age. Once again, not life threatening, but needs to be addressed for their comfort and your peace of mind. As in so many things in life (darn it), it can worse as your dog ages also.
There is another, serious condition, called Pemphigus foliates, which DOES need veterinarian intervention. It is characterized by blisters on the dry nose of a dog. They can burst and form crust that can covers the nostrils and makes breathing difficult. This is an autoimmune skin disease that is so very common amongst our modern dogs and cats. I repeat, in this case your dog’s nose would certainly need a vet’s attention.
Q: My dog has a pinkish colored nose and needs sunscreen. Is there sunscreen in NOSE BUTTER®?
Yes, some dogs may even be sensitive to the sun and need a bit of sunscreen…shea butter actually has natural sunscreens. Though I am an intrepid Googler, I have not been able to get concrete facts on the exact SPF numbers for shea butter. Some sources make exorbitant claims of incredibly high SPF levels, but more common sense research shows shea butter to be in the SPF 7-15 range. NOSE BUTTER® will have an additional sunscreen option beginning in summer of 2014.
This is intended to give you a bit of info on the various conditions that can cause your best friend to have a dry, crusty dog nose. If you need more info, visit the Merck Vet manual site, email us or Google it!SHOP FOR NOSE BUTTER HERE