Why Is My Dog’s Nose White?

Do you notice your dog’s nose turning white? It can be alarming however in the majority of instances it’s perfectly normal. However, there are a few interesting reasons your dog’s sniffer suddenly becomes white.

Why does my dog’s nose turn white?

Your dog’s nose could turn white due to many reasons. This could be due to old age, weather, or vitiligo.


As human hair may turn gray with old age, dogs may have hair loss and the skin’s pigmentation with age.

However, ageing could also cause the nose of your dog to become darker. If your dog’s nose is white, it’s caused by it being caused by the Tyrosinase enzyme.

The enzyme responsible is for creating the color, or pigment that your dog’s nose has. The enzyme is less powerful as your dog grows older and causes their nose to lighten in hue.

On the Nose

The world is explored by dogs through their noses. Literally. If your pet had their nose stuck into something white, the nose will also be white. The two are a couple of common causes.

If you look closely the dog’s skin doesn’t appear to have changed colour. It’s just something white across their faces.

Hypopigmentation of the nasal passages during the winter months (aka”snow nose)

The most common form of snow nose is in dog breeds that are known to live in the snow, such as for instance the Siberian Husky and Alaskan Malamute. However, it could occur in other breeds, too.

Similar to the changes in color because of ageing It is believed that this is caused by the Tyrosinase enzyme. It isn’t able to function properly when temperatures are cold. The nose of your pet is likely to become pale or white.

In this scenario, the dog’s nose will be back to normal when the weather warms up.

Nasal De-pigmentation (Dudley Nose)

Nasal depigmentation, also called Dudley nose is a condition that has no obvious reason. If your pet’s nose is turning white and there’s no obvious reason It’s most likely Dudley nose.

The problem is nothing to be concerned about. It’s a cosmetic problem. Certain dogs’ noses will change to their normal colors. Others will have a lighter-colored nose throughout their lives.

Breeds that are most likely to sport a Dudley’s noses are Irish Setters, Pointers, Poodles, Doberman Pinschers, Afghan Hounds, Golden Retrievers, Samoyeds, and White German Shepherds.

Contact Dermatitis

Contact dermatitis is one of the types of allergic reactions. It can result in itchy skin. It could also cause the nose of your dog to turn white or pink. Other signs include red spots and itching around their noses.


Vitiligo is a skin condition that affects both humans as well as dogs. It’s essentially a loss of pigmentation of the skin. It typically starts with a tiny patch which grows in size as time passes. Then the entire nose may appear white.

It is usually caused because the immune system attacks the pigment-controlling cells. Vitiligo usually affects other parts of the body. It’s not only the nose. However, it could be the first area to go white.

It is most prevalent among Dachshunds, Doberman Pinschers, Labrador Retrievers, Rottweilers along with German Shepherds. However, it’s also seen in other breeds too.

Discoid Lupus Erythematosus

Discoid Lupus Erythematosus is an immune system disorder. It can cause fissuring or erosion in the skin. This may cause bleeding or the skin to crust.

Along with the mouth, the lips and mouth can also become white. The condition can get worse after exposure to sunlight. The treatment is with topical medications.

Cutaneous lymphoma

Cutaneous lymphoma is extremely rare. It’s a form of malignancy that can cause the face to become to be white. It usually occurs on the lips, nose and eyelids. Apart from changing to white, the eyes can also get thick and crusty as skin lesions develop.

It can be hard to differentiate between cutaneous lymphoma and discoid lupus. Therefore, it is often necessary to perform a biopsy.

What is the reason why my dog’s nose is caked?

It’s likely that you’ve been told that a cold, wet nose is an indication of an animal that is healthy. If the nose appears dry, or crusty then you’re naturally worried. There are a variety of reasons that can cause the nose of your dog to turn crusty.

Some are benign some are harmless, while others are threatening.


Allergies can cause the nose of your dog to become dry, irritated and crusty. The most frequent triggers are environmental allergens like dust, grass and pollen.

They may also have chemical sensitivities that affect them. Cleaning products, air fresheners and smoke cause reactions in dogs that are allergic.

Dry Skin

There are many reasons that can lead to the nose of your dog becoming dried and crusty. In winter, the temperatures cause the air to become dry. This could lead to dry skin and even the nose of your dog. Wind can also trigger this problem, especially in wintertime.

In the event that dry, flaky skin has been the reason for your pet’s nose problems Simply apply Vaseline or paw wax to moisten their noses.

Dog Breed

Breeds such as pugs and English bulldogs have noses that are pushed back and are more susceptible to dry nasal. In this instance, it’s just their anatomy that causes the problem.

Plastic Allergy

A lot of dogs are allergic to the plastic that is commonly used in bowls for dogs. The allergy could cause their noses to turn white, pink or dried and crusty.

If your dog’s bowl is a plastic bowl, think about replacing it to see if it solves the problem.

It is also known as Xeromycteria (aka the parasympathetic nose)

Your dog’s secretions are specially formulated to help keep their nose moist. This causes their nasal tissues to dry out. This can cause a dry, and crusty nose. It can also occur with dry eyes.

The condition could result from hypothyroidism or an injury to nasal nerves. Other signs of hypothyroidism can include dry skin, hair loss and fatigue.

Mucocutaneous pyoderma

It is caused by an infection with a bacterium. The exact cause isn’t understood however it’s related to allergies and nose injuries. It is sometimes difficult to differentiate between this condition and discoid thematosus.

As well as crusting, your dog’s nose might be swollen and itchy in the event that a bacterial issue is at the root of the problem.

Pemphigus foliaceus

The rare condition is a problem for the nose, muzzle, the area around the eyes, and the ear flaps. The paws may be affected too. It could cause the skin to become crusty and cause lesions.

The diagnosis is made through the use of a biopsy. Treatment involves immunomodulating therapy that dogs have to continue taking throughout their lives.

What do I do when my dog’s nose appears white?

What should you do should your dog’s nose turn white will be contingent upon the reason. In most cases, you don’t have to take any action. There are other reasons that require veterinary treatment.

Benign Color Changes

If your pet’s nose is changing because of the effects of age or cold temperatures it’s not something you have to take action about. These are normal changes and are just cosmetic.

Concerning Causes

When your pet’s nose has changed hue due to a few reasons, they’ll require veterinary treatment. The diagnosis and treatment depend on the root cause.

If your dog’s nostrils are dry and white or swelling this is a sign that you should take them to the vet. It is recommended to also have them examined for the appearance of sores or lesions on their noses.