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What Are The Black Spots On Your Dog Tongue? Find Out Here

By
 Danica Rojero 
on 
May 16, 2021

There is a part of dog health that is often ignored: the tongue. The tongue, in fact, is the main organ responsible for the sense of taste. It is also the first thing you see when you look at your dog.

In the past few years, dogs have gained a reputation for being dull, unresponsive, and generally unwilling to engage with their owners.

This is usually because the owners have neglected the dog's tongue. It is important to groom your dog's tongue regularly to fight bacteria and to make the dog more responsive and active.

There are a number of common reasons for black spots on your dog's tongue. Some of the more common reasons involve allergies, injury, and infections.

Dog Tongue Spots: Myths & Misinformation

The dog "tongue spotting" myth seems to have been invented by the pet food industry, as a way to market a dog food. According to the myth, dog spots on the tongue are caused by allergies to beef (or chicken) in dog food. But this is a myth.

There are no studies or scientific evidence to prove that the dog spots are related to allergies or that they are caused by beef in dog food.

It’s a common misconception that all black spots on dog tongue are melanomas. It’s true that black spots on your dog’s tongue are generally a form of melanoma, but it’s a very specific subset of all spots on dog’s tongue.

What separates this spot from other spots on dog tongue, is that they will appear to have a white outline around the black pigment. Not all black spots on dog tongue are melanomas, and melanomas not all black.

Melanin Could Be the Cause

Have you ever wondered why some dogs have dark spots on their tongue? It’s because of the same pigment that makes their nose and eye coat so dark. This pigment is called melanin, and it is what makes your pet look so cute!

In the dog’s tongue, the melanin accumulates in spots, which is why dog owners often call them freckles. In some breeds, such as the Chihuahua, the spots are more noticeable.

Dogs have two types of pigment-producing cells in their skin and hair—melanocytes and xanthophores. Melanin is produced by melanocytes, which color the hair and skin of dogs, while xanthophores produce yellow and red pigments.

Our furry friends have multiple types of melanocytes, but two kinds in particular — the melanophores and the melanocytes — are primarily responsible for the color of their skin, hair, and eyes.

Dog breeds with black spots on the tongue

A dog breed with black spots on tongue is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, some dog owners enjoy the unusual look and the novelty of their pet.

However, it can be a bad thing, especially if your dog has black spots on the tongue. This trait is seen in many breeds including the Dalmatian, Great Dane, Irish Setter, and the German Shepherd.

Preventative Care: Keeping An Eye Out For Canine Tongue Spots

A thin or dark spot on a dog's tongue is a sign that he's likely suffering from a nutritional deficiency. If your dog has one, it's time to take him to the vet!

The condition is usually caused by a calcium deficiency, but it can also be caused by a zinc deficiency, selenium deficiency, or a vitamin C deficiency, so it's important to have your vet run a blood test to determine the exact cause.

A thin or dark spot on a dog's tongue is a sign that he's likely suffering from a nutritional deficiency. If your dog has one, it's time to take him to the vet! The condition is usually caused by a calcium deficiency.

Tongue spots are a common condition of dogs over the age of seven. They're typically harmless, but if you have a dachshund or a pug, it's important to take note of any tongue discoloration. In certain instances, they can be indicators of malignant melanomas.

A small brown tongue spot may be harmless, but bigger spots and those that are irregularly shaped suggest a higher risk of cancer.

In most cases, your vet will simply advise you to remove the spot, but if the spot bleeds or is still there after seven days, you should get your dog checked out to make sure it's not a cancerous polyp.

Tongue spots are common in dogs, but something you should be aware of is that they can be a sign of more serious issues. If you see a dark, or red spot on your dog's tongue, it can be a sign of a more serious health issue such as liver disease, endocrine problems, and even intestinal issues.

German Shepherd Dental Health Issues That May Affect the Tongue

German Shepherd mouth and tongue health are important to your dog's overall health. (There are several reasons for this, and they range from the simple fact that if your dog is in constant pain, he or she will probably be unhappy and stressed-out, to the very real possibility that your dog's overall health may be in danger.)

Also, since a German Shepherd's tongue is the primary tool used to clean itself, and it can be difficult to talk or breath with a tongue problem, you may be forced to take drastic measures to ensure that your dog's tongue stays healthy.

If you notice a black spot in your dog's tongue, this may be a sign of a problem with his gums and teeth. German Shepherds are at a greater risk of developing black spots in their tongue; this is due to the prevalence of the gene that causes black spots in the tongue.

Last Words

Black spots on your dogs tongue are a bit alarming, but they can actually be a sign that your dog is healthy and well. The black spots are caused by tiny dead cells that build up on the surface of your dogs tongue. The dead cells come from the top layer of your dogs tongue, which is shed every day. Eventually, the dead cells build up to form the black spots.

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