According to the petcancercenter.com, oral cancer accounts for six percent of all cancers in dogs. It is also the fourth most common cancer in dogs. Having noted this, it is important for any oral tumors to be investigated further to establish what they could be. In this post is information on benign bumps on dog lips, what could cause them and what to do to get rid of them.
Bumps on Dog Lips
Bumps on dog lips could be swellings, warts, growths or abscesses among others. These are caused by different factors some of which are environmental. The bumps may be skin-colored, red, pink or white. They could be found on the upper or lower lips; either on the outside or inside. Whichever characteristics they adopt, it is important to know their cause so as to take the best cause of action. Here are various causes of a bumpy lip on your dog.
Causes of Bumps on Dog Lips
1. Canine Viral Papilloma
Also referred to as dog warts, canine viral papilloma is small growths resembling a cauliflower due to their jagged surface. In some cases, though, they could appear smooth. They are common on the lips of dogs below two years, senior dogs and those with a compromised immune system. Their viral nature makes them highly contagious. These bumps are harmless and tend to go away on their own within six months. Where they don’t, surgical removal may be necessary. A biopsy may also be conducted because some of them may turn malignant with time.
2. Skin Tags
These are commonly confused with warts. Canine skin tags are skin growths that are small in nature. They are suspected to be caused by allergic sensitivities and genetic predisposition. Skin tags grow on any part of the skin. By the time you identify one, it is likely that there are others elsewhere on the skin.
Skin tags appear flat and are slightly rounded and while differentiating them from warts may take some experience, there are always some pointers. Skin tags on dogs are floppy at the base and thin while warts on dogs are solidly rooted on the skin and thick. Additionally, skin tags may dangle from the skin and can be moved back and forth with the hand while warts cannot.
Skin tags do not require treatment as they heal on their own with time. Unless they inhibit the dog’s daily activities such as hindering them from eating, no treatment is necessary. They can, therefore, be left alone.
3. Bites and Stings
Dogs are curious pets. They like to investigate and mostly do this by sniffing. This usually puts their face at risk. The nose and mouth areas tend to be highly susceptible to any harm that their investigations may unearth.
While on their daily activities, they may experience insect bites or stings. The lip is especially prone to wasp and bee stings. A dog stung by bee will have a swollen bump at the point of the sting. At times, allergic reactions to the sting could see them suffer additional symptoms.
To tell if your dog has been stung, check for a stinger. Where they exhibit shortness of breath or in case you are not certain what insect might have stung or bitten your pooch, seek immediate veterinary services.
4. Dental Problems
While dental problems are likely to cause problems within the mouth, bumps on dog lips could be caused by the same. Inflammation and severe gum disease could expand their symptoms to the lips. Since most dental conditions are painful, your dog is likely to exhibit additional symptoms. These include pawing at the lips and mouth, blood-tinged saliva and failure to eat.
To deal with this kind of bumps on dog lips, the exact dental cause has to be identified. It is only then that the treatment can be conducted. Treating dental conditions may include teeth extraction and dental cleansing. Antibiotics and any other necessary medication may also be offered.
Another reason why you may notice bumps on dog lips is as a result of an injury. This mostly occurs as a result of pressure exerted on the lip area. It could be caused by sharp tree branches, fighting with cats or other dogs, cuts from objects lying around among others. The wounded area could swell resulting in a bumpy lip. This should go away with time as the injury heals. Proper cleansing and nursing are necessary so as to prevent infections.
6. Lip Folds
Dogs with drooping lips such as Saint Bernard and English bulldogs often experience skin inflammation. This is also known as lip fold dermatitis.
Since the lips are prone to accumulating moisture, it leaves room for the proliferation of microorganisms. This results in inflammation, swelling, and bad odor. This could be the reason why your dog has bumps on his lips.
7. Allergic Reactions
When a dog comes into direct contact with allergens, it could lead to skin irritation. This manifests itself in the form of bumps, inflammation, and redness on the skin. A common item that your dog may have an allergic reaction to is a plastic for or water bowl. When this happens, you will observe bumps on dog lips and the chin as well as any other part likely to get into contact with the bowl during feeding. To eliminate the allergic rash, it is important to change their feeding bowl.
Abscesses on dog’s lips are skin bumps resulting from the accumulation of fluid within a cavity. The accumulated fluid is normally a collection of white blood cells which are responsible for fighting bacteria. When they die, they become pus. Abscesses tend to be painful, hard to touch and emit a smelly discharge.
Abscesses can form in any part of the body mostly as secondary infections resulting from other conditions. When abscesses occur on the lips, it is as a result of hunting and other competitive activities. They are therefore most common in outdoor dogs. They will suffer abscesses from having foreign objects penetrate their skin. For example, while playing with sticks or pieces of wood, they may splinter and leave tiny shards on the lips, which then become infected and form an abscess with time.
Red, White or Pink Bumps on Dog Lips
When the skin becomes red, it is an indication of inflammation. There are different reasons why a dog may have red bumps on their lips. A freshly injured lip could get swollen and redden as a result of pressure exerted on it. Canine acne could also see your dog suffer red bumps commonly referred to as pimples. To ease the inflammation accompanying reddening, you could use compresses on the area. White or pink bumps on dog lips could be oral papilloma or warts. These viral growths found on either the lower or upper lips go away on their own with time.
Cancerous growths on dog lip are another possible cause of bumps on dog lips. These require immediate attention to avert long-term complications. As such, always talk to your vet whenever you notice an unusual growth. In addition, any benign growth that suddenly starts to increase in size, change in shape and color or bleed should be investigated further. Talk to your veterinarian about the same.