Abnormal Dog Nipples: Possible Reasons 

Abnormal Dog Nipples: Possible Reasons 

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Mammary gland swelling in female dogs should be closely monitored, especially if this is unusual for your dog. Abnormal dog nipples should be taken carefully since they may even represent a potentially fatal medical problem.

Mastitis, mammary tumors, regular heat cycles, and pregnancy are the four causes of enlarged dog nipples. 


The 4 Possible Reasons for Abnormal Dog Nipples  


Swollen nipples in dogs that have just given birth are frequently caused by mastitis. A dog’s nipples may be slightly enlarged or swollen during pregnancy and nursing.




Mastitis, on the other hand, results in more significant nipple swelling and pain. It happens when the nipples get infected when the baby is nursing, resulting in swollen, abnormal nipples. Also, there’s a chance that the puppies’ milk will get contaminated and poisonous.


Within the first two weeks after the delivery of the puppies, mastitis can develop. It can be recognized by symptoms including refusal to nurse, discolored or bloody milk, weeping, sluggish behavior, lumpy and painful nipples, and dehydration. It is crucial to contact a veterinarian if mastitis is suspected since, if untreated, it can spread swiftly and be lethal. 


Mammary Tumor  


A mammary tumor is another potential cause of enlarged dog nipples. A mammary tumor can result in swelling around the nipples, similar to breast cancer in humans. Dogs typically develop mammary tumors, which vary in size, appearance, and texture.


If bleeding is seen close to the nipple, it may indicate advanced cancer. Regular checkups with a veterinarian can help detect any signs of cancer. Mammary tumors appear in a variety of forms, from benign to malignant.


Malignant tumors have an uneven shape and rapid growth rate, while benign tumors develop slowly and have a smooth texture. Taking the dog for a checkup immediately is crucial if a tumor is suspected. 


Heat Cycles


Nipples that are swollen naturally develop when a dog is in heat. The proestrus and estrus phases, often known as the “heat” stages, occur throughout the four stages of estrus in unspayed female dogs.


The vulva expands during this time, and a bloody discharge is possible. In preparation for pregnancy, the mammary glands also grow slightly. The swelling won’t go down until the second and third stages of heat are complete. Consult a veterinarian for advice if you have questions or are unsure about a dog’s heat cycle. 




Last but not least, swelling nipples are to be anticipated if a dog may be pregnant. Dog nipples during pregnancy will be visibly more prominent than in heat. Throughout the 58 to 68-day gestation period, the size of the nipples will gradually grow. The puppies will remain the same size until they are weaned from their mother’s milk. 


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