Why Do Dogs Smell Like Dogs?


If you are among the tens of thousands of dog lovers across the world then you have undoubted asked yourself, probably more than once, why do dogs smell like dogs. There are many different things – both natural and not – that cause dogs to smell like they do. These things can range from body secretions all the way to the food they eat. In some cases certain illnesses may even lead to some foul smells. This is especially true of certain breeds of dogs.

Some dogs, especially those with large amounts of hair in their ears can be susceptible to frequent and often severe ear infections. This often produces a bad smell that becomes worse depending on the severity of the infection. Another example is seen in dogs that have deep skin folds and develop skin infections due to excess moisture being retained within these folds. These are just some of the common illnesses that can lead a dog to smell like a dog although there are a great many other possibilities as well.

Although dogs don’t sweat as humans do they do have sweat glands and they do emit smell. Often this is smell is based on what the dog has eaten or medications that may have been given to the dog. Antibiotics are especially prone to producing a foul smell from a dogs sweat glands however other medications may also have the same effect. Typically the odor that is produced from these sweat glands is how dogs identify each other upon meeting. The scent glands located near the anus aid in this identification process as well which may be why dogs often smell each others butts. Dental infections are another source for bad smells in dogs as this leads to the dog having bad smelling breath.


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As pet owners many people tend to give their dogs special ‘treats’ such as leftover table scraps and such. Unfortunately there are some foods that dogs simply shouldn’t be allowed to eat. This is not only because the diet plays a large part in how a dog smells but also because some foods are actually quite dangerous to our four legged companions. Some of the foods that should always be excluded from a dogs diet include the following:

·Unripe fruit

·Leaves or stems from tomato plants





·Spoiled food



·Salty foods


·Yeast dough

·Poultry bones

Avoiding these foods can go a long way to preventing your dog from smelling bad based on his diet.

Bathing your dog regularly with a quality shampoo specifically formulated for dogs is another way to help control the dog smell of your pet. There are literally hundreds of different products that you could use on your dog it is not always easy to know which ones to use and which ones to avoid. The best way to approach this question is to talk to your veterinarian or a local pet store. This will allow you to get the most up to date and current information available on the subject.

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Based in Toronto Canada, Animal Rights Advocate and Relentless Volunteer!

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