Swollen lips in the dog: what does it mean

If your dog has swollen lips, take him to the vet

Our dog may need veterinary help more than once in his life. One of the most striking symptoms is having swollen lips, which can appear like this at the least expected moment.

What do we have to do to bring them back to normal? If you want to know why the dog ended up with swollen lips, then I will explain everything about this topic.

Causes of a dog having swollen lips

Swollen lips in dogs can have many causes

Insect bites

They are usually not a problem, but if they occur in the nose, head or mouth they can be really dangerous. In cases like these we must have our dog examined by a veterinarian immediately, so that he can determine the severity of the bite. And is that if there is considerable swelling, it can hinder the respiratory capacity of the animal.

Specifically, Tick ​​bites cause Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (RMSF), which in addition to high fever can cause the appearance of some blood spots on the lips and gums of the dog. Ears, paws, lips, and sex organs are also likely to become inflamed.

Puppy scratching
Related article:
How to prevent fleas and ticks

Allergic reactions

It can occur before the ingestion of some substance, the rubbing with some plant or even the administration of a vaccine, and usually affects areas of the face such as the ears, eyelids, muzzle or lips. If we do not go quickly to a vet, the inflammation can dangerously spread to the point of drowning.

Melanoma

It is a type of cancer that produces irregularities at the edges of the lips, with a variety of colors. This swelling would be accompanied by facial inflammation, excessive salivation and dental problems, and it tends to occur more commonly in older dogs.

Infection of a tooth

If the dog has an infected tooth, In addition to having swollen lips, you will have other symptoms such as bad breath, loss of appetite and bloody saliva. Any hairy of any age can have this problem, but it is much more common in those who do not have their teeth cleaned regularly.

Craniomandibular osteopathy

It is a disease that mainly affects Boxers, Pinschers and Labradors, which causes inflammation in the jaw. It appears in animals under one year of age. Symptoms are drooling, loss of appetite, and fever.

Which is the treatment?

Treatment will depend on the cause, what you need to know is that as soon as we see that our dog has swollen lips we have to take him to the vet as soon as possible, otherwise we may risk endangering your life.

Once at the clinic or at the veterinary hospital, the professional will ask us if you have other symptoms and will do a first physical exam.

  • In the event of a suspected tick bite, your hair may be cut to see if there is a parasite and, if there is, it can be removed properly with a pair of tick remover tweezers. Afterwards, they will give you an injection that will inhibit the effects of the parasite's toxin and they will keep you under observation for 24-48 hours.
  • In the event that it is an allergic reaction, they will put an antihistamine to relieve the symptoms, thus ensuring that the animal can breathe calmly again. In addition, he will try to find out what caused the reaction to prevent it from happening again.
  • In the event that it is believed that it may be a melanomawill do an X-ray and perhaps an ultrasound to find out how far along you are. Depending on the severity, you may choose to have it removed or to administer a series of medications such as anti-inflammatories that will relieve the pain.
  • If what you have is an infection of a tooth, what you will do is choose to clean it or, depending on the severity, to remove it. It will also do a thorough cleaning of your teeth.
  • Lastly, if there is suspicion of craniomandibular osteopathy, you will be administered anti-inflammatories and we will recommend giving you a non-chewable diet until the symptoms regress.

How to prevent swollen lips in dogs

If your dog has swollen lips you should consult a professional

Now that you know everything that your dog can go through, the most normal thing is that you want to avoid it. Some causes that cause swollen lips cannot be remedied, such as the appearance of tumors, etc. But others are easier and you can help them not to affect them.

Thus, you would have:

Try to prevent the dog from going to areas with insects

Insects are often very annoying, and especially in the spring and summer season there is a greater influx. Therefore, if your dog is one of those who usually runs after them or does not leave them alone and ends up with the odd bite, the best thing you can do is avoid it.

To do this, try choose the hours when there are fewer insects, or change the place where you usually take your dog for a walk so that he does not find them. In some cases, you can consult your vet as he may recommend an insect repellent (like those of this selection) to keep them away from your pet.

Correct their behavior

Another way to help him, especially with insects or allergic reactions, is to correct his behavior. We talk about prevent the dog from messing with insects or eating something you shouldn't. Of course, when it comes to preventing swollen lips in dogs, you must arm yourself with a lot of patience.

It may take a while to eliminate what you do not want him to do (for example, eat things that are on the ground, or run after insects). And how we do it? There are many options, and every dog ​​reacts to one or the other. For example, in the case of some dogs, using a water spray to spray him when he does something wrong can be effective. But in others it will not prevent me from doing what we do not want.

At first you will have to be very careful not to expose it because, no matter how much you say or do to it, it is going to do it. But with the passage of time you will have to subject him to "tests" that will help him to know how he should react to these stimuli.

If you don't know how to do it, maybe it's a better idea go to an ethologist, that he is the most indicated professional to eliminate behaviors in dogs that are not loved.

Brush his teeth

As we have said before, another reason why you can have swollen lips is due to problems in the mouth. To avoid them, you should clean your dog's mouth and this is achieved by brushing his teeth often.

When dogs eat, either food or feed, many pieces can remain lodged in their teeth and, over time, these can rot and affect the teeth, or even beyond, affecting their mouth. And hence the fact that many dogs get swollen lips.

What you can do is, with a special toothbrush for dogs (and one pasta also for dogs), brush your teeth often to avoid this problem. We also recommend that, in the bucket where your dog drinks water, you add a special mouthwash. This helps to prevent tartar plaques from forming and to clean the mouth to a greater or lesser extent. Don't worry that the dog will reject that water; they usually don't.

Of course, it is highly recommended that, from time to time, you take your dog to the vet for a check of the teeth and jaw ... This especially when they are older, because sometimes by not changing the type of feed, they can be done damage to the teeth and that they break or the jaw joints deteriorate over time.

Change your diet

Whether it is due to food allergies, jaw problems, teeth ... The change of diet can help your dog not have swollen lips often. Sometimes food, even though it is feed, can cause allergies to dogs, hence it has to be observed very well.

In these cases, veterinarians often choose foods that are easier to chew, such as food tubs, or cans, rather than feed.

Regular vet visits

It is logical, especially if what we want to prevent is that the dog develops a disease that is more difficult to cure.

To do this, we recommend that you take him for a review visit at least once a year. However, it is very convenient to observe daily to see if there are any changes in their behavior, or in his physical, that makes you go to the consultation before.

This will help to detect possible problems more quickly, such as melanoma on the lips, which, the sooner it begins to be treated, the more likely it is that the animal will not have negative and / or serious consequences.

Deworm your dog

Do you know that you can avoid tick bites? It is something that almost all owners only take into account in the spring and summer months. But the ticks They are year round and can bite dogs at any time.

If your pet has long hair, you may not realize they have a tick until the tick has become very swollen and you notice a lump when stroking it (as long as it is in the area you are petting it).

Therefore, our recommendation is that you use products to deworm your dog on the outside, well with pipettes,

Our dog may need veterinary help more than once in his life. One of the most striking symptoms is having swollen lips, which can appear like this at the least expected moment.

What do we have to do to bring them back to normal? If you want to know why the dog ended up with swollen lips, then I will explain everything about this topic.

Causes of a dog having swollen lips

Swollen lips in dogs can have many causes

Insect bites

They are usually not a problem, but if they occur in the nose, head or mouth they can be really dangerous. In cases like these we must have our dog examined by a veterinarian immediately, so that he can determine the severity of the bite. And is that if there is considerable swelling, it can hinder the respiratory capacity of the animal.

Specifically, Tick ​​bites cause Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (RMSF), which in addition to high fever can cause the appearance of some blood spots on the lips and gums of the dog. Ears, paws, lips, and sex organs are also likely to become inflamed.

Puppy scratching
Related article:
How to prevent fleas and ticks

Allergic reactions

It can occur before the ingestion of some substance, the rubbing with some plant or even the administration of a vaccine, and usually affects areas of the face such as the ears, eyelids, muzzle or lips. If we do not go quickly to a vet, the inflammation can dangerously spread to the point of drowning.

Melanoma

It is a type of cancer that produces irregularities at the edges of the lips, with a variety of colors. This swelling would be accompanied by facial inflammation, excessive salivation and dental problems, and it tends to occur more commonly in older dogs.

Infection of a tooth

If the dog has an infected tooth, In addition to having swollen lips, you will have other symptoms such as bad breath, loss of appetite and bloody saliva. Any hairy of any age can have this problem, but it is much more common in those who do not have their teeth cleaned regularly.

Craniomandibular osteopathy

It is a disease that mainly affects Boxers, Pinschers and Labradors, which causes inflammation in the jaw. It appears in animals under one year of age. Symptoms are drooling, loss of appetite, and fever.

Which is the treatment?

Treatment will depend on the cause, what you need to know is that as soon as we see that our dog has swollen lips we have to take him to the vet as soon as possible, otherwise we may risk endangering your life.

Once at the clinic or at the veterinary hospital, the professional will ask us if you have other symptoms and will do a first physical exam.

  • In the event of a suspected tick bite, your hair may be cut to see if there is a parasite and, if there is, it can be removed properly with a pair of tick remover tweezers. Afterwards, they will give you an injection that will inhibit the effects of the parasite's toxin and they will keep you under observation for 24-48 hours.
  • In the event that it is an allergic reaction, they will put an antihistamine to relieve the symptoms, thus ensuring that the animal can breathe calmly again. In addition, he will try to find out what caused the reaction to prevent it from happening again.
  • In the event that it is believed that it may be a melanomawill do an X-ray and perhaps an ultrasound to find out how far along you are. Depending on the severity, you may choose to have it removed or to administer a series of medications such as anti-inflammatories that will relieve the pain.
  • If what you have is an infection of a tooth, what you will do is choose to clean it or, depending on the severity, to remove it. It will also do a thorough cleaning of your teeth.
  • Lastly, if there is suspicion of craniomandibular osteopathy, you will be administered anti-inflammatories and we will recommend giving you a non-chewable diet until the symptoms regress.

How to prevent swollen lips in dogs

If your dog has swollen lips you should consult a professional

Now that you know everything that your dog can go through, the most normal thing is that you want to avoid it. Some causes that cause swollen lips cannot be remedied, such as the appearance of tumors, etc. But others are easier and you can help them not to affect them.

Thus, you would have:

Try to prevent the dog from going to areas with insects

Insects are often very annoying, and especially in the spring and summer season there is a greater influx. Therefore, if your dog is one of those who usually runs after them or does not leave them alone and ends up with the odd bite, the best thing you can do is avoid it.

To do this, try choose the hours when there are fewer insects, or change the place where you usually take your dog for a walk so that he does not find them. In some cases, you can consult your vet as he may recommend an insect repellent (like those of this selection) to keep them away from your pet.

Correct their behavior

Another way to help him, especially with insects or allergic reactions, is to correct his behavior. We talk about prevent the dog from messing with insects or eating something you shouldn't. Of course, when it comes to preventing swollen lips in dogs, you must arm yourself with a lot of patience.

It may take a while to eliminate what you do not want him to do (for example, eat things that are on the ground, or run after insects). And how we do it? There are many options, and every dog ​​reacts to one or the other. For example, in the case of some dogs, using a water spray to spray him when he does something wrong can be effective. But in others it will not prevent me from doing what we do not want.

At first you will have to be very careful not to expose it because, no matter how much you say or do to it, it is going to do it. But with the passage of time you will have to subject him to "tests" that will help him to know how he should react to these stimuli.

If you don't know how to do it, maybe it's a better idea go to an ethologist, that he is the most indicated professional to eliminate behaviors in dogs that are not loved.

Brush his teeth

As we have said before, another reason why you can have swollen lips is due to problems in the mouth. To avoid them, you should clean your dog's mouth and this is achieved by brushing his teeth often.

When dogs eat, either food or feed, many pieces can remain lodged in their teeth and, over time, these can rot and affect the teeth, or even beyond, affecting their mouth. And hence the fact that many dogs get swollen lips.

What you can do is, with a special toothbrush for dogs (and one pasta also for dogs), brush your teeth often to avoid this problem. We also recommend that, in the bucket where your dog drinks water, you add a special mouthwash. This helps to prevent tartar plaques from forming and to clean the mouth to a greater or lesser extent. Don't worry that the dog will reject that water; they usually don't.

Of course, it is highly recommended that, from time to time, you take your dog to the vet for a check of the teeth and jaw ... This especially when they are older, because sometimes by not changing the type of feed, they can be done damage to the teeth and that they break or the jaw joints deteriorate over time.

Change your diet

Whether it is due to food allergies, jaw problems, teeth ... The change of diet can help your dog not have swollen lips often. Sometimes food, even though it is feed, can cause allergies to dogs, hence it has to be observed very well.

In these cases, veterinarians often choose foods that are easier to chew, such as food tubs, or cans, rather than feed.

Regular vet visits

It is logical, especially if what we want to prevent is that the dog develops a disease that is more difficult to cure.

To do this, we recommend that you take him for a review visit at least once a year. However, it is very convenient to observe daily to see if there are any changes in their behavior, or in his physical, that makes you go to the consultation before.

This will help to detect possible problems more quickly, such as melanoma on the lips, which, the sooner it begins to be treated, the more likely it is that the animal will not have negative and / or serious consequences.

Deworm your dog

Do you know that you can avoid tick bites? It is something that almost all owners only take into account in the spring and summer months. But the ticks They are year round and can bite dogs at any time.

If your pet has long hair, you may not realize they have a tick until the tick has become very swollen and you notice a lump when stroking it (as long as it is in the area you are petting it).

Therefore, our recommendation is that you use products to deworm your dog on the outside, either with pipettes, collars or any other product that your veterinarian recommends (or that you are that is effective) and on the inside. This does not mean that there is zero chance of being bitten by a tick, but it is more complicated.

In addition, we give you another advice: keep the coat neat and, if possible, short (in summer more since dogs can get very hot). That is, try to brush it often, give it the occasional bath a month and observe that it does not lose its shine as it could indicate that there is something that is not going well.

Dog's swollen lips are a cause for concern

Have you been useful?> Collars or any other products that your veterinarian recommends (or that you are that is effective) and inside. This does not mean that there is zero chance of being bitten by a tick, but it is more complicated.

In addition, we give you another advice: keep the coat neat and, if possible, short (in summer more since dogs can get very hot). That is, try to brush it often, give it the occasional bath a month and observe that it does not lose its shine as it could indicate that there is something that is not going well.

Dog's swollen lips are a cause for concern

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  1.   mimi cruz said

    Hello, my dog ​​is a Rottweiler and today she woke up with a swollen face, and after hours she began to get hives on her body, but she already started eating, I began to bathe her and put ice on her body, they could give me another recommendation.

    1.    Rachel Sanchez said

      Hi Mimi. My advice is that you take your dog to the vet as soon as possible to find out the origin of the problem and administer a treatment. It is better to avoid home remedies before consulting with the professional, as they can be counterproductive. Lucky. A hug.

  2.   Alex said

    My boxer is one year old and if his muzzle and half head just got super inflamed, what can be done?

    1.    Rachel Sanchez said

      Hi Alex. You should take your dog to the vet as soon as possible to eliminate the inflammation and determine the cause of the problem. If possible, take it immediately. Good luck and a hug.

  3.   Marlon castaneda said

    Me. The dog is a Labrador, it is 4 months from one moment to the next, it started with red eyes and the swollen trunk, I took it, passed it a wet cloth and cleaned it, now it is better, the swelling has gone down.

    1.    Rachel Sanchez said

      Hi Marlon. It is best to have a vet examine your dog as soon as possible. It could be an allergy and in that case medical treatment would be necessary. Good luck and a hug.

  4.   Silvia said

    Hi! My nine-year-old boxer has a droopy lower lip on the left side. I traveled and left him in the care of a girl. Today I asked him if he had fought with another dog. She says no and that she forgot to tell me about her drooping lip. I'll take it to the afternoon. But do you know what it could be?

  5.   Angie yauri said

    Hello, my 3-month-old Cocker puppy has a swollen muzzle, he also has swelling in his mouth and in his eyes, he wants to scratch everything, he doesn't stop biting, please help me, I'm super worried !! Help me, he's very small, I don't want something bad to happen to him.

  6.   Itzel said

    My dog ​​is a golden cross, his eye is inflamed and his tongue was checked by a veterinarian, but today he woke up more inflamed, what can I do?

  7.   Sarees Madrid said

    Hello. I have a dog that I did a sterilization surgery 12 days ago. The same day at night he got sick and shed blood gave him an internal hemorrhage. Due to that they did another bigger surgery in the center of the pansita to clean it all and then sew it up. Again, well I brought her home and took care of her when she was 8 days old, she said she does not want to eat. He has a fever, he had a bump and diarrhea at night, and he started to leak blood from the large wound, according to the doctor it is called cerumen and that is normal, but it is still bad, the bump and diarrhea stopped, but he is presenting with a fever, it is swollen the lips the ears and the paws the little hands. I no longer know what to think or do I am worried.