Can Dogs Sweat?

All mammals must regulate their body temperature.  The weather just does not stay stable enough for many animals to rely on it to maintain body temperature.  So we all have ways to heat ourselves up, as well as cool ourselves off; and our canine friends do the same thing, just not in the same way.  Where we sweat, canines pant.  Can dogs sweat?  Well not exactly, but they kind of sweat through their mouths.

Can Dogs Sweat?Although many biological traits of dogs and humans are very similar, the skin is not one of them.  A dog’s skin is much different from a human’s and they cannot  regulate their temperature the same way we do, mostly do to the thick fur coat covering their body.  When we sweat, our skin gets coated with moisture, which evaporates and cools the skin.  This is actually a very efficient method of cooling, as it basically surrounds us in a cool layer of liquid which can lower the body temperature no matter how hot it is out.  This is practical because our skin is covered in many glands, which can sweat when our body temperature rises too high.  Dogs, however, use their mouths to allow hot air and moisture to escape, evaporating from their tongues.  So when you see your dog panting with their tongue hanging out of their mouth, they are really just trying to release heat from their body.  Dogs are also able to enlarge the size of their blood vessels around their face, which lets the blood flow closer to the cool air outside their skin, which is actually a very effective way  to cool from the inside out if it is not too hot outside.  Dogs usually use this technique to cool themselves during or after exercise.

Although you may think a dogs coat would make them very hot in the summer, it actually acts like insulation to their bodies.  It helps keep them warm when it is cold, and it helps them stay cool from sunlight.  Unfortunately, it is not quite as effective as preventing heat.  A dog can get a condition called hyperthermia and start overheating, which will eventually lead to heat stroke if they stay too hot for too long.  Giving a dog a kiddie pool in the summer can help a great deal to cool them off and prevent the risk of hyperthermia.  Getting your dog covered with water will have the same beneficial evaporation effect that sweating has for us!