Black Spot On Dog Tongue

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A black spot on Dog tongue is an uncommon condition in dogs, caused by a bacterial infection or inflammation of the tongue. The black spots can be present in any color of dogs, although they tend to be more visible in light-colored or red-coated breeds. In most cases, the black spots are not a cause for concern and can be managed with simple vet visits and medications. However, they can be a sign of more serious medical issues, such as a tumor or other oral health issues, so it’s important to take your pup to the vet if you see the spots.

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A black spot on a dog’s tongue is a condition known as black tongue or black-pigmented lingual melanosis. This is generally a benign condition caused by increased melanin, the pigment that gives your dog’s tongue its color. The spot may appear as a small black dot or as a larger patch on the tongue. It does not usually cause any health problems but should be seen by a veterinarian to rule out any other underlying conditions. Treatment is usually not necessary, as the condition usually resolves on its own. However, if the spot does not improve or the dog exhibits any other symptoms, further testing should be done.

What Is Black Spot On Dog Tongue?

A black spot on a dog’s tongue is a condition known as nasal planum melanosis, which is a discoloration of the top of the tongue, usually in the form of a black spot. This condition is caused by melanoma, which is a type of skin cancer. The spot is usually benign, however, in some cases, the spot may become thicker and darker, which could indicate that the cancer is growing and spreading. If this is the case, it is important to have the spot tested and monitored by a veterinarian.

Are Black Spots In Dogs Mouths Normal?

It can be normal for some dogs to have black spots in their mouths, however, it is important to have these spots checked by a veterinarian. In some cases, these could be an indication of a health issue such as a dental infection or gum disease.

How Common Are Dogs With Spotted Tongues?

Dogs with spotted tongues are not very common, as they are caused by a gene mutation that affects the amount of pigment in the dog’s tongue. These spotted tongues occur in only a few dog breeds, including the Chow Chow and the Chinese Shar-Pei. The breed most commonly associated with the spotted tongue is the Chow Chow, and even among these dogs the gene that causes the mutation is not very common. Some experts suggest that the spotted tongue phenomenon may be linked to a lack of history of inbreeding in the Chow Chow breed.

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An unhealthy dog tongue can occur if a dog has an underlying medical condition such as dehydration, an infection, an inflammatory disease, or even cancer. Dogs that have bite wounds, lacerations, inflammation, or heavy saliva accumulation may also have an unhealthy tongue. Symptoms of an unhealthy dog tongue can include discoloration, cracks or fissures, swelling, redness, a bad smell, or black spots. Depending on the cause, other symptoms may also exist and should be discussed with a veterinarian. Prolonged symptoms can impact a dog’s ability to taste or eat food which can cause further health concerns.

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Are Black Spots on Dog Tongues a Health Problem?

No, black spots on a dog’s tongue are not typically a health problem. Dogs naturally have black pigmented spots on their tongue and are not a source of concern. It is more common in some breeds, such as Shar Peis, Bulldogs, and Chow Chows, and the spots can range from small to large in size. In a few cases, dark spots could be an indication of a fungal infection, but this is relatively rare. If the spots appear to be changing in size or affecting your dog’s eating or drinking habits, then it’s important to consult your vet right away.

Dog Tongue Turning Black

Dog tongues, like human tongues, can occasionally turn black due to various health and environmental conditions. In dogs, black discoloration is often due to bacterial or fungal infections, poor oral hygiene, smoking, and even a bite or scratch. It can also be a sign of anemia or cancer. If your dog’s tongue is turning black, it’s important to take them to the vet to make sure there isn’t an underlying health issue that needs treatment.

Red Spots On A Dog’s Tongue

Red spots on a dog’s tongue are likely caused by an allergy, skin infection, or a condition called Hemangiosarcoma. Allergies can cause red spots or patches to form on a dog’s tongue and are usually caused by food, drugs, or environmental factors. Skin infections or diseases such as Demodectic mange, ringworm, or bacterial Leptospirosis can also cause red spots. Finally, Hemangiosarcoma, a type of cancer, can cause red or purple spots to form on a dog’s tongue. If your dog has red spots on its tongue, it is important to see a vet to determine the cause and start appropriate treatment.

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Black spots on a dog’s tongue can be caused by a variety of factors. The most common cause is melanoma or black-pigmented tumors. Melanoma usually appears on the face or oral cavity, including the tongue. Although this type of melanoma is usually benign, it can become malignant if it spreads to other parts of the body, so your dog should be seen by a veterinarian for diagnosis and treatment.

Other causes of black spots on a dog’s tongue include pigmented gingivitis and papillomas. Pigmented gingivitis is an infection of the gums and is caused by bacteria and other microorganisms. It can present with black discoloration of the gums and, in some cases, on the tongue. Papillomas are also caused by a virus and appear as small, raised, white or pink bumps on the surface of the mouth or tongue. Papillomas can often be mistaken for warts, so if your dog has either of these conditions, he should be seen by a veterinarian for a definitive diagnosis.

Finally, the presence of black spots on the tongue can also be a sign of trauma, such as from a burn or puncture wound. If you notice any black spots on your dog’s tongue, it is important to have him evaluated by a veterinarian to rule out any of the underlying causes.

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Black Tongue In Dogs Due To Deficiency

Black tongue in dogs is caused by a deficiency in vitamin B12, also known as cobalamin. It is a common condition in older dogs and can be caused by poor nutrition, an underlying medical condition, or intestinal parasites. Treatment for this condition usually involves supplements of Vitamin B12 along with dietary adjustments to replace the essential vitamins and minerals that the dog needs. In mild cases, the black tongue will often resolve on its own with proper diet and hydration, but more severe cases may require medical treatment.

What Do Black Spots On A Dog’s Tongue Look Like?

Black spots on a dog’s tongue typically have a shiny, black center surrounded by a lighter rim of pigment. The overall appearance of a black spot can vary from being a few millimeters in size to being more spread out and over a larger area of the tongue. Some dogs can also display multiple black spots on their tongue.

What Dog Breeds Have Black Spots On Their Tongues?

The Chow Chow is the breed that is most widely known for having a black spot on its tongue and is said to be the only one with such a trait. Its tongue is usually described as being blue-black. In addition to the Chow Chow, other breeds that may have some form of black spots on their tongues include the Shar-Pei, Akita, Pekingese, Chinese Shar-Pei, Japanese Chin, and Tibetan Mastiff. Although they may have some variation in the size and distribution of the spots, these breeds typically have some amount of black pigmentation on their tongues. Some of these breeds have patches while others have several spots scattered throughout the tongue.

Do Purebred Dogs Have Black Spots On Their Tongues

No, purebred dogs do not typically have black spots on their tongues. The black spots that are often seen on tongues are more common among some mixed-breed dogs and are believed to be a remnant of the Chow Chow, which does usually have a black spot in the center of its tongue.

When To Worry About A Black Spot On Your Dog’s Tongue

You should always consult a veterinarian if you notice any new growths or spots on your dog’s tongue, as this could be a sign of illness or infection. Black spots on the tongue can be an early sign of melanomas, and a veterinarian should verify if the spots are cancerous or caused by another condition.

Black Spots On Dog Tongue And Cancer

Black spots on a dog’s tongue do not necessarily indicate cancer, as they are often caused by benign pigment irregularities. In certain cases, dogs may be born with black spots on their tongues. However, if the spots are accompanied by other symptoms, such as a loss of appetite, weight loss, or fatigue, it is possible that your dog may have cancer and you should take them to visit a veterinarian.

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To treat a black tongue, it’s important to first identify the underlying cause. If trauma is the cause, the tongue should clear up on its own, unless there’s a need for medical intervention.

If the cause is benign melanosis, there are several treatment options that your veterinarian may suggest:

  1. Diet: Changing the dog’s food to a hypoallergenic diet may help improve the condition.
  2. Iron Supplements: These may be prescribed to provide additional iron and help treat an iron deficiency, which could be causing the black tongue.
  3. Dental hygiene: Good dental hygiene is important to maintain healthy gums and teeth, and to help prevent any damage to the tongue.
  4. Surgery: In some cases, melanotic discoloration may be caused by a tumor or other growth on the tongue, which may require surgical removal.
  5. Treatments: Depending on the underlying cause of a black tongue, treatments such as topical medications, antibiotics, a biopsy, or laser therapy may be required.

It’s important to note that black tongues due to benign melanosis tend to be harmless, so treatment isn’t always necessary. However, if the discoloration is causing any adverse symptoms, it’s important to consult with your veterinarian to determine the best course of action.

Why Do Dogs Tongues Turn Black When They Die?

The tongue itself usually does not turn black when a dog dies; rather, what may happen is that the tongue will become discolored due to sediment, postmortem staining, and the moist environment caused by decomposition. This discoloration can range from yellow to black and is not an indication of a particular cause of death.


Q. What breed of dogs have black spots on their tongue?

A. The Chow Chow is the only breed of dog known to have black spots on its tongue. The breed is known for its lion-like mane, dense double coat, and distinctive blue-black tongue.

Q. What should I do when my dog has a black spot on his tongue?

A. If your dog has a black spot on his tongue, it is important to take him to the vet to have it examined. Depending on the size and nature of the spot, the cause could range from harmless discoloration to a sign of a more serious problem. The vet can properly identify the cause and determine if treatment is needed.

Q. What does a black spot on a dog’s tongue mean?

A. A black spot on a dog’s tongue is caused by a condition known as Hyperpigmentation. This occurs when melanin, the pigment that gives color to skin, fur, and other tissues, is produced in an unusually high amount. This can lead to dark coloration on the tongue. This pigmentation is usually harmless and does not require any treatment.


Black spots on a dog’s tongue are not unusual and are usually nothing to worry about. They can be caused by a variety of conditions, such as bruises, hyperpigmentation, infection, or the presence of an underlying disease. However, it is always best to seek veterinary advice if you are concerned about any changes you may have observed in your dog’s tongue.

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