The Answer to Whether a Pet’s Nose Should Be Wet or Dry
Some of us tend to tell whether a cat or dog is healthy by the condition of their nose. Like, if the nose is cold and wet, then the animal is fine. However, not everything is that simple: there are things that are important to know so as not to draw erroneous conclusions.
5-Minute Crafts decided to find out what a pet’s wet or dry nose means.
What is a normal condition of a nose?
Contrary to popular belief, there is no single concept of what your pet’s nose should be, as both a wet and a dry nose can mean that your dog or cat is doing just fine. For example, a cat’s nose moisture can vary even during the day: the cat’s nose can be wet in the morning, and dry in the afternoon. However, there can be reasons behind this, which we will discuss below.
Let’s take a look at a few reasons why cats and dogs have wet noses.
One of the simplest explanations is hygiene. Cats often groom themselves by rubbing their face with a wet paw, and dogs lick their noses, wetting it with saliva. In hot weather, a wet nose helps your pet to maintain an optimal body temperature and not overheat. Another reason is a keen sense of smell. Cats have few taste buds on their tongues, which is why they sniff their food carefully before tasting it. Moisture on the nose contributes to a better perception of smells. In dogs, the mechanism of smell works in a similar way: scent particles are more easily perceived if the surface of the nose is damp.
As we found out, a wet nose plays an important role in our pet’s life. However, it doesn’t mean that a dry nose signals problems. For example, a dog that has just woken up is more likely to have a dry and warm nose because it didn’t lick it while asleep. The same is true for cats. In addition, these animals are very fond of warm places, and lying on a radiator or window sill in the sun also can make their noses dry. Just like poor air circulation in the room.
So, what should be considered as a red flag?
If a pet has a dry nose from time to time but it is active and cheerful, most likely there is nothing to worry about. For your own peace of mind, you can monitor the situation to make sure your pet’s nose becomes wet again. But if you notice loss of appetite, excessive thirst, weight loss, or vomiting along with a dry nose, then you should consult your vet. Also, lethargy and crusts on the surface of the nose can be important signals.