Why Is My Dogs Tongue Black

Does that suggest my dog has chow in him? No, well, perhaps. While black spots on the tongue are one of the most recognizable characteristics of a chow, they are not exclusive to chows. Actually, there are 38 different breeds that it might be. Have you ever seen a gorgeous golden dog with black patches on its tongue like the one pictured above? We’re here to explain what those spots are and why they are where they are, though.

Over the course of their lives, some dogs acquire more pigmentation on various areas of their bodies, including the tongue. They might imply the presence of merely additional deposits of pigmentation, similar to freckles or birthmarks on people. Dogs can also have freckle-like dark pigmentation on other portions of their bodies. When she was a puppy, my dog Eev-aa had tiny ones, and now they cover her entire tongue and the interior of her mouth. She is a shepherd’s daughter, no doubt about it.

What makes us think that dogs with these markings on their tongue are Chow-related? Both Chows and Shar Pei puppies are born with pink tongues, and at around 10 weeks old, the excess pigmentation starts to show as spots.

Being one of the oldest breeds known to man, the Chow is a possibility in any mixed breed, but there are 38 other breeds with tongue spots.

So what kind of dog am I? Among a large number of breeds, tongue spots are quite prevalent. You wouldn’t go very far if you tried to limit your breed selection only based on the spots. Although the list below helps to reduce the possibilities a little, there are still a lot of possible combinations when you take into account the 38 other breeds that it may be. The Spitzfamily includes numerous breeds, and many of them have Spaniel or Pointer forebears.

Although there are some clear commonalities across many of these breeds, no one has been able to pinpoint precisely why some breeds have tongue spots and others do not.

You can correct someone the next time they assert that your dog is partially Chow because of the shape of his tongue. The 38 dog breeds with speckled tongues are listed below; does yours match one of them?

When a dog’s tongue goes black, what does that mean?

Blood-stained drooling saliva and mouth ulcers or inflammation are the causes of “black tongue.” The dog also develops bad breath. Niacin deficiency is another possible cause of black tongue. If not treated in a timely manner, this sickness that causes tongue discoloration may become fatal.

Should a dog have a black tongue?

One of a dog’s most adaptable organs is its tongue. Similar to the human tongue, your furry friend’s tongue is primarily an organ of taste. But most of us are unaware that this adaptable muscle serves a number of other purposes than devouring kibble or your lovely home-cooked supper.

The muscle in the dog’s body is possibly the most significant one. We enjoy the wet, sloppy, slobbering kisses that come from their huge tongues, which are perfect for expressing their love. The tongue is a fantastic tool for quickly slurping up food and liquids. The tongue of the dog can also be used to treat wounds, which many of us are unaware of. The expression “licking one’s wounds” derives from the dog’s natural propensity to sanitize its wound and speed healing. A built-in heat regulator is also included in the tongue. In the summer, dogs pant to let heat escape and to cool down by having moisture from the tongue evaporate. The tongue of a dog also serves as a personal health indication for your pet.

In the pink of health

Before choosing a puppy for your family, it’s important to inspect its nose and tongue, as is common knowledge. How come, though? If a dog’s nose is wet and cool, it means the animal is in good health. A dog’s genuine state of health can also be determined by observing the color of its tongue.

The tongue of a dog is often pink because it is coated in taste buds and gets a lot of blood flow. You will detect a blue-black tongue in some breeds, like the Chow Chow and Shar Pei. A spotted and speckled tongue may also be seen in some mixed breeds. All dogs should have pink tongues, aside from that. Any hue change is a sign of disease. Or, for mischievous dogs, having access to a coloring agent. You might notice some staining of the tongue if your dog has been playing with a toy that contains artificial colors. Before you rush to the vet, check out the toy first. Please make sure the color is not harmful, of course.

What to watch out for?

Any dog with a black tongue, save Chow Chows and Shar Peis, is clearly unwell. If your pet also has blood-tinged saliva and bad breath, you can infer they are sick. This condition might be an indication that your dog lacks niacin, has mouth irritation, or perhaps has ulceration.

When the tongue is both pigmented and ulcerated, it may be a sign of uremia, a toxic illness that often manifests when the kidneys’ ability to filter waste products is impaired. In this sickness, the body retains its waste products in the blood rather than eliminating them through urination.

Check the colour of your dogs tongue:

It may be a sign of cyanosis if the tongue, gums, or oral mucous membranes have gone purple or blue. This is typically brought on by a lack of oxygen in the blood, which is typically brought on by a respiratory or heart condition. Dogs can get asthma, and when an asthma episode occurs, mucus secretions obstruct the lungs, causing a dog to pant, wheeze, and cough. The blood oxygen level may drop as a result, rendering the tongue blue.

The heart’s capacity to pump blood might be weakened by a heart attack. The dog collapses as a result of not getting enough oxygen to the brain, muscles, and other organs.

A dog’s tongue that is unusually white could be an indication of anemia. A low red blood cell count may occur for a variety of causes. The dog could have an internal bleeding, a condition transmitted by ticks, or even worse, canine leukemia. A white tongue may also indicate that your pet has consumed something harmful. If that happens, you should seek immediate medical help for the dog because delaying treatment could be fatal.

A reddish, irritated tongue in your dog with lumps and black dots is unmistakably a sign of melanoma. The development of malignant tissues is what causes the redness. Additionally, you require medical help in this situation.


You must constantly be mindful of your health if you want to be a good pet parent. The dog’s tongue serves as its primary health and wellbeing indicator. Dogs have a propensity of panting, thus it is simple to see how the tongue is doing. You only need to take a short glance sometimes to see how your pet is doing.

What shade of tongue should a dog have?

Our dogs’ tongues are typically pink in color. Pink is a common hue. However, certain dog breeds have tongues that are unusually pigmented.

For instance, the Chow Chow has a purple or purple-spotted tongue. When you notice this, don’t be alarmed; it’s entirely natural and comparable to a birthmark.

You might want to think about taking your pet to the vet for a checkup if you ever notice your pet’s tongue change color. Your dog may be anemic (a blood-related condition) or malnourished if their tongues are pale.

A dog’s yellow tongue is frequently an indication of liver or gallbladder issues (just like when humans turn yellowcommonly known as jaundice).

If your dog doesn’t belong to one of those “colored tongue breeds” and has a tongue that ranges in color from red to purple or blue, this could be a sign of cancer, diabetes, toxin intake, or gastrointestinal problems.


How can I treat the black tongue on my dog?

Both nicotinic acid and nicotinic acid amide are useful in treating black tongue in dogs and keeping dogs in a healthy state when they are eating the diet that causes black tongue to develop.

Is my dog dying, and how can I know?

There will always be death. As pet owners, we don’t like to think about it all that much, but regrettably, we all have to deal with it at some point. There are many articles on the internet that are intended to assist you comprehend the process of death when it comes to euthanasia, but very few that address the subject of natural death when it comes to our dogs passing. Although natural death does not occur frequently, we at Leesville Animal Hospital believe that pet owners should be prepared for it.

Even though only a small percentage of dogs die from natural causes, if you have an older dog, you might be wondering what to expect if yours is one of the rare ones.

There are some symptoms you should look out for if you are the owner of a dog receiving hospice care since they could indicate that your pet is preparing to pass away. Even while these symptoms might sometimes indicate illness or other changes, when they come simultaneously or in conjunction with a general feeling that your pet is getting ready to pass away, you can nearly always be sure that the end is close. It is always worthwhile to visit your family veterinarian or request that they make a home call if you start to see these symptoms in your dog. Your family veterinarian will be able to confirm your assumptions and assist you in understanding how to put your pet more at ease with the process of dying because they will have grown to know them over the years.

The following are indicators to look out for in an aging dog or an ill dog receiving hospice care:

  • Inability to coordinate
  • reduced appetite
  • not anymore consuming water
  • inability to move or losing interest in activities they formerly found enjoyable
  • extreme tiredness
  • vomit or have accidents
  • twitching of muscles
  • Confusion
  • slowed breathing
  • unease about being comfy
  • a wish to be alone or to get closer to you (this can depend upon the dog, but will present as being an unusual need or behavior)
  • consciousness loss

Some of these indicators will start to appear weeks before your dog dies. Most frequently, these symptoms resemble the following:

  • You might observe weight loss, a lack of self-grooming, duller eyes, thirst, and gastrointestinal problems 3 months to 3 weeks before your dog passes away.
  • Three weeks prior to your dog’s passing, you might notice: a rise in self-isolation, eye discharge, finicky eating, altered breathing patterns, decreased interest in enjoyable activities, growing weight loss, and fussy eating.
  • Your dog may experience excessive weight loss, a distant expression in their eyes, a lack of interest in anything, restlessness or odd stillness, a change in how your dog smells, and a changing disposition in the final few days before they pass away.

Many folks may claim that their cherished family pet clung to life right up until the instant that they let the animal to let go. We can’t help but think of this as an extension of the lifetime of loyalty that our dogs show us. Without the assurance that we won’t be without them and that their task is finished, our pets are unable to move on. We owe it to our pets to provide them with that reassurance, no matter how much it may hurt.

Many people worry that they won’t know a) if their pet has genuinely passed away and b) what to do next when the time comes for their cherished pooches to pass away.

There are several indications that your pet has left their body when they have passed away. The body will completely relax, and your dog will no longer appear rigid; instead, they will “let go,” which is the most obvious indication. As the last breath leaves their lungs, you will observe a slimming of the body, and if their eyes are still open, you may notice a loss of life. You should now check for breathing and a heartbeat. You can be certain that your dog has passed on if there is no longer a heartbeat, no breathing, and these conditions have persisted for 30 minutes.

What should you do if your pet has moved on? If your pet died away with their eyes open, you might decide to gently close them first. Your pet may have lost the ability to regulate their bowels or bladder during their passing, and many pet owners wish to clean up after their pets. To do this, use baby wipes, a damp facecloth, or a moist towel. The most crucial thing at this time, though, may be to take your time and spend the final moments with your pet. Take as much time as necessary to say goodbye.

Once you’ve said your goodbyes, you should phone your vet or, if your vet doesn’t offer home visits, a vet who does. They will be able to attest to the passing of your companion and, if needed, transfer your dog for cremation. It is usually better to have a veterinarian check on your pet before you do so, even if you have permission to bury them on your land. Some pet owners decide to bring their deceased animal to their local veterinarian facility. If you decide to do this, cover your pet in a tidy blanket and phone your veterinarian to let them know you will be there. They will be able to inform you what you need to bring with you and provide you with any additional instructions you may need for your visit.

Your veterinarian can handle the cremation process for you if you decide to do so for your pet. Every veterinary practice works closely with a pet cremation. However, if you would rather, you can make the arrangements and go to the Crematory with your dog. However, if you decide to do this, you must remember that it must be done right afterwards, or else you must ask your veterinarian to preserve your companion’s remains until you can travel the next day.

You can decide whether to have an individual cremation or a communal cremation, in which case your pet would be burned alongside other animals. Even though an individual cremation is more expensive, it is still a private process. You may have decided to keep your pet’s ashes after cremation or to have them strewn near the crematorium. You must decide what is right for you at this moment.

A pet cemetery can be a better option for you if cremation is not the option that feels right to you but you are not allowed to bury your pet on your property because of municipal regulations. Every state has a pet cemetery, and each cemetery has its unique procedures for burying animals.