A colorless discharge in a dog's nose (runny nose), is a common problem. Most of the time, a dog licks it away with his tongue. if without symptoms, is not a cause of immediate worry. A pet owner should wait and see if the runny nose stops on its own or he should look for signs of illness of any kind. However, in case, there are signs of discomfort or if the discharge is bloody, grayish purulent or viscous a visit to the vet is necessary.
Turbinates are scrolled spongy bones of the nasal passages in dogs. As the air passes through turbinates in the nose, it is warmed and filtered on its way to the lungs.
Upper respiratory organs such as nasal cavities, sinuses and the post nasal area are the source of nasal discharge. However, secretions can be forced into postnasal area if the dog has swallowing disorder or a digestive tract disease.
Nasal discharge occurs when infectious, chemical or inflammatory agents irritate nasal passage or when a foreign object becomes lodged in the nose.
Common symptoms associated with nasal discharge are:
Reduction in nasal air flow
Secretions or dried discharge on the hair of the muzzle or forelimbs
Swelling of face or hard palate (due to tumor or abscess of fourth premolar)
Polyp (may be visible on ear exam, or by pushing the soft palate down on oral exam)