A runny nose indicates an irritant in the nasal passages. Because irritants also produce sneezing, these two signs tend to occur together.
Excited and nervous dogs often secrete a clear, watery mucus that drips from the nose. This type of discharge is not accompanied by sneezing and disappears when the dog relaxes.
Human cold viruses don't affect dogs. However, dogs are afflicted by a number of serious respiratory diseases that initially produce symptoms similar to those of the human cold. A runny nose, along with an eye discharge and coughing and sneezing, is an indication that you should seek veterinary attention for your dog. A yellowish discharge along with coughing and fever could indicate canine influenza and you should contact your vet immediately.
Foreign bodies, tumors, and chronic bacterial and fungal infections can erode the mucous membranes and produce a blood-streaked mucus discharge or a nosebleed. Nose bleeds also occur with bleeding disorders such as Von Willebrand's disease and hemophilia. Trauma, such as banging the nose, may also lead to some bloody discharge. if you see blood in the nasal drainage, notify your vet.
Any nasal discharge that persists for several hours is significant. A clear, watery discharge is typical of allergic and viral rhinitis, while a thick discharge suggests a bacterial or fungal infection. A nasal discharge from one nostril only is seen with oral nasal fistulas and foreign bodies and tumors in the nose.
Treatment is dependent upon the precipitating cause of the symptom.
There is no prevention for this symptom.
Please contact your veterinarian if you have questions regarding this condition.
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