Foreign objects can get stuck and irritate your dog’s nose
Many things can cause irritation and problems with your dog’s nose, including foreign objects, allergens and tumors. These objects can be bothersome, and cause several signs of distress or illness in your dog. A foreign object is any object that enters the nasal cavity that is not supposed to be there. While your dog’s nose is normally very good at filtering out small particles and other objects, some items can sometimes get past, causing a variety of reactions.
Allergens such as pollens and grasses can enter the nose, causing a histamine reaction. Your dog may sneeze, cough, or have a runny nose or eyes as a result of this. Sometimes, prolonged exposure to these allergens can actually lead to a secondary infection, with eye or nasal discharge becoming green or yellow in color.
Larger objects can also get stuck in your dog’s nose, including grass seeds, foxtails and even small sticks and twigs. These objects cause more irritation and may cause symptoms such as discharge from the nose, blood from the nose, or your dog may paw at the nose or sneeze and cough in an attempt to get it out. Tumors can have a similar effect on dogs, depending on their location. The nasal cavities can house tumor-like growths (both cancerous and benign) in a variety of locations, and symptoms may not be seen until they are large enough to cause discomfort or blocking of the airways.
How can I prevent objects from entering my dog’s nose?
Monitoring your dog while he or she is outdoors is one way of preventing objects from getting into the nose. If your dog is allergic to certain pollens or grasses, an antihistamine can be used to prevent a reaction from occurring before it happens. Your vet can give you the correct dosage of medication for your dog’s size. If your dog is particularly interested in a grassy or brushy area, or is sniffing a lot, it is a good idea to make sure he is not sniffing up any loose particles or objects that can get lodged inside.
What should I do if I suspect a foreign object in my dog’s nose?
If you suspect an object in your dog’s nose, it is best to bring it to the attention of your veterinarian. Do not attempt to remove the object yourself, as you may accidentally injure the nasal passageways, or cause discomfort to your dog. Your veterinarian can perform a complete exam, including looking into the nose with a scope to check for objects. If allergens are suspected, your vet can recommend a variety of anti-allergy medications or other treatments to help relieve symptoms.
If an object is thought to be in the nasal passageway, your vet may recommend further testing, or removal. Some additional tests include both X-rays and endoscopy of the nose. These allow your veterinarian to see further into the nasal passageways for any signs of objects or growths that could be causing symptoms.
If the object is in an area that is easy to remove, your vet will most likely sedate your dog, and then use a set of very long-nosed tweezers to safely remove the object. Your vet may also recommend antibiotics to prevent infection, especially if the objects was very irritating, or blood was seen during examination. For minor tumors in easy to reach places, your vet may recommend surgical removal. However large tumors, or those in hard to reach places may need additional treatment such as chemotherapy to attempt reducing or removing the tumor. Additional treatment options may be available if there is a specialist in your area.
Natural Remedies for allergies or runny nose caused by objects in your dog’s nose
If minor problems such as allergies, or even a minor cold are causing your dog’s nose to run, several herbal supplements can be given to help boost the immune system. These include common herbs such as Echinacea and Garlic, as well as Vitamin C. A homeopathic treatment such as Allium Cepa 6C may also provide some benefit. Natural antihistamines and herbal supplements with antihistamine properties may also help reduce the incidence of nasal discharge and sneezing.