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Excessive drooling.

Species: Dog
Breed: Puggle
Age: 1-2 years
My Puggle started drooling a few days ago and I assumed she had gotten a red ant or some other insect in her mouth. We have frogs and lizards too. I assumed that it would go away but it has not. It has been two whole days now. I thought it could be grass fertilizer, a plant, and even read that something could be stuck in her gums or teeth and I see nothing. She is eating, playing, running around and is otherwise fine but the drool soaks right through anything she lays on. Could this be something else? She is just one year old. She does like to chew her toys to pieces and the cat's. I tried giving her benedryl in case it was an allergic reaction and it may have helped but I don't really know. Any suggestions? I don't have the money but will take her to the vet if need be.

Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Hmmm...this is a tough question to answer!

It is quite unusual for a dog this young to have drooling that lasts for this long. Usually if a young dog has excessive drooling I wonder if the dog has eaten something like a toad. But, this really would only last for a few hours.

Have you recently used any over the counter flea products? Some will contain chemicals like organophosphates that can definitely cause excessive drooling. If this is the case, then I would give Elsie a bath using some Dawn dish detergent. (And if this is the case, then I would get her on a prescription flea product. For more information see this article.)

A dental problem is a possibility as well, but again, uncommon in such a young dog. And, you said that you are not able to see any issues with her mouth.

Have a good look at the roof of her mouth. I have seen dogs that have gotten a stick wedged across the roof. This could definitely cause drooling.

And see if you can have a good look under her tongue. A foreign object like a thorn or splinter under the tongue could cause drooling as well.

Another possibility is something called a liver shunt. This is a serious liver problem and it can cause drooling. It would be a little bit unusual to see issues just now though rather than throughout Elsie's life. Most dogs with a liver shunt are smaller than normal.

There are some salivary gland disorders that could cause this as well such as sialadenitis or sialadenosis. These are rare. They are treatable, but you would obviously need to see your vet for treatment.

Unfortunately, if things are not improving it does sound like she will need to see the vet. I'm sorry I can't give you a solution!

Dr. Marie.

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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

Customer reply:

I also notice that her nose is running. Could this be an allergy or a cold? How long should I wait before taking her to the vet?

Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

We don't tend to see a lot of dogs with allergies that cause a runny nose. It can happen, but not often. And, this really wouldn't explain a runny nose.

We can see some respiratory viruses (i.e. sort of like a cold) such as kennel cough. Not all dogs with kennel cough actually have a cough. However, again, this wouldn't explain the drooling.

Here are some criteria to help you decide whether to see the vet:

-If she starts to feel sick (i.e. not eating, lethargic)
-If she has any discharge that is green or yellow (as this would mean she has an infection and needs antibiotics).
-If she is still doing this after the weekend and there hasn't been much improvement.

I hope she's ok!

Dr. Marie.

Customer reply:

Actually, I think I have figured it out. When I was watering plants tonight, she ran from one (a cactus). It is in a room she usually does not go into. I think she tried to lick or bite it and I bet a sticker got stuck in her mouth. She appears to be much better and is not slobbering as much. I bet the slobber has helped it come out. This is in theory of course. Thanks for your help.

Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Ah, that would make sense. If there is a sticker in there, hopefully it has come out and hasn't migrated to her nose! Worst case scenario would be if it sets up infection in her nose. If so you'll see a snotty green/yellow discharge and she'll need to see her doctor for antibiotics.

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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.