Why Do Dogs Drool?

Updated: June 09, 2022

"A dog’s saliva is 98% made up of water and has various antibacterial compounds, electrolytes, and enzymes that all play a vital role in a dog’s health"

Every dog parent probably wonders why do dogs drool. At some point, almost all pet parents who own a dog have had to deal with and bust out some towels to clean up their furbaby’s drool. But, what causes dogs to drool in the first place?

Drooling is a natural part of a dog’s digestive process but dog excessive drooling can be a cause of concern. In this article, we will talk about why dogs drool, why some experience dog excessive drooling, and identify the difference between a healthy slobber and an alarming one.


Just like us, dogs also produce saliva. Dog drool is accumulated saliva. A dog’s saliva is 98% made up of water and has various antibacterial compounds, electrolytes, and enzymes that all play a vital role in a dog’s health and bodily functions. As a matter of fact, saliva serves an array of different functions having something to do with your furbaby’s taste, oral health, digestion, and smell. Saliva provides:

  • Moisture so your furbaby is able to break down food
  • Lubrication so that food smoothly goes down the esophagus
  • Antiseptic to aid in preventing injury and healing wounds (when your dog licks their wounds, it is their way of cleaning it and preventing any infection)

In addition, according to VCA Animal Hospitals, saliva helps promote good dental and oral health by constantly bathing the teeth with various minerals and proteins that safeguard the tooth enamel and lower the risk of gum diseases. Saliva also helps decrease any cavity formation and prevents tooth decay from occurring as it helps clear food particles away from your furbaby’s teeth.


In a healthy dog, drooling often occurs during meal times when the salivary glands are anticipating something delicious or whenever your furbaby gnaws on something so irresistible such as Gnawtlers®. This drooling is normal. Although we may not love drool, it is healthy and does not need any medical attention at all. The same drooling can happen when you give something with a taste that your dog does not like, like giving them their medications.

my dog is drooling and acting strange

Drooling can also be more prevalent and frequent in some dog breeds that are deep-jowled, and droopy-lipped, such as the Bulldogs, St. Bernards, Basset hounds, Mastiffs, and Boxers. These dogs drool more compared to the others because their mouth has looser skin, making it more capable of collecting more saliva and filling it up. So, while these breeds may seem to be drooling excessively, in most cases it is completely natural. A healthy and normal drool is white-ish to clear in color and is almost relatively odorless. From time to time, it may drip or ooze but it stops and is not supposed to be bottomless at all times.


Dog excessive drooling is a sign that something is wrong with your furbaby. Excessive drooling in dogs may be caused by some of these medical emergencies:

Mouth Disease and Tooth Decay

In most cases, dog excessive drooling is caused by mouth disease and tooth decay. According to Pets WebMD, drooling is often accompanied by a foul mouth odor. A fractured tooth or tumors, bumps, or cysts in the mouth or throat can be the cause. However, it is also possible that gum irritation and tartar buildup can be the reason for your dog’s excessive drooling.

To avoid this, make sure that you are taking good care of your furbaby’s dental and oral health. See to it that you are brushing your dog’s teeth daily and having them gnaw on our Gnawtlers®. Our Gnawtlers® are premium elk and antler chews that are safe for your furbaby and are jam-packed with nutrients. These elk and antler chews for dogs do not only keep your furbaby mentally and physically stimulated but most importantly, they keep your dog’s teeth clean by acting as a natural dental chew. Providing your furbaby with Gnawtlers® will help remove plaque off their teeth, prevent tartar buildup, and help keep their teeth clean and healthy.

It is also important to watch for any lumps, bumps, cysts, and wounds in your furbaby’s mouth and for any yellow or brown plague deposits on their teeth. This may require an immediate visit to the vet for a checkup and/or a dental cleaning.


One of the major signs that your dog is overheating panting and drooling excessively. A dog pants and drools excessively when they are suffering from a heatstroke in an attempt to regulate their body temperature and cool themselves down.

Motion Sickness and Anxiety

Anxiety and motion sickness when traveling is also one of the most common causes of excessive drooling in dogs. This causes open-mouth breathing that leads to a dog drooling in cars. Once the motion stops, your dog should slowly return to normal. Just like humans, dogs may throw up from motion sickness, so we recommend using a Pawtect® Pad over your car seats if your furbaby is prone to motion sickness. These are waterproof and washable to protect your car from excessive drool or vomit.

why do dogs drool? excessive dog drooling

Foreign Object Caught in the Mouth

A foreign object that is caught in your furbaby's mouth, teeth, or tongue also causes dog excessive dog drooling. If your dog is just chewing on something, it is fine! Just make sure that what they are chewing on is safe. However, if you notice them pawing at their face and drooling excessively, something should be wrong. Check your furbaby’s mouth for any stuck foreign objects and go to your veterinary clinic as soon as possible.

Ingestion of Poisonous Items

If you’re thinking, “my dog is drooling and acting strange,” it could be a sign that they ingested something they shouldn’t. If your dog ingests anything that is poisonous, excessive drooling is an expected sign. When this happens, take your dog to the vet immediately. To avoid anything frightening like this, make sure that you keep all harmful plants and substances in your house locked up and out of your dog’s reach.

Digestive Problems in Dogs

Anything that upsets your dog’s stomach may result in excessive drooling in dogs. These digestive problems may exhibit themselves as a simple stomach upset to bloat. Learn to recognize the signs of digestive problems in dogs and how to deal with them here.

Upper Respiratory Infections

A dog drooling a lot can be because of infections that occur in the nose, sinuses, and throat. Some dogs are more prone to developing respiratory infections. Any dog can contract an upper respiratory infection but according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, puppies, senior dogs, and dogs with other health issues are at greater risk. Dogs with short muzzles, such as Bulldogs, Pekingese, and Pugs, are also predisposed to respiratory issues.


Are there any home remedies for dog drooling? While it is true that your dog’s drooling can soil your clothes and our furniture at home, you can always deal with it! To help protect your home from drool, use Pet Parents® Pawtect® Blankets. Pet Parents® Pawtect® Blankets are waterproof blankets that are perfect for protecting your furniture. These blankets have heavy-duty absorption with added layers which means added protection.

Excessive drooling may look different from one dog to another but you know your dog best and you know when a drool is normal for them and when it is not. Contact your veterinarian immediately if the drooling is excessive and they are not their usual selves. Otherwise, drooling is just normal in any dog and there is absolutely nothing to worry about. It can get messy but drool is just drool and there is nothing we won’t deal with for our dogs.

"To help protect your home from drool, use Pet Parents® Pawtect® Blankets. These blankets have heavy-duty absorption with added layers which means added protection."