Causes of bad smell in dogs

If you share your day to day with a dog you will have noticed that sometimes it smells very strong and even bad and you may also have wondered why this smell is due. The first thing you have to think is that dogs smell like dogs and that humans do not usually like us, since it is usually intense. But, even if we do not like it, they need it to communicate with each other and with other animals. In addition, this peculiar aroma changes from one dog to another, although humans hardly notice it.

If you have ever wondered what the causes of bad odor in dogs can be to make your pet smell better, keep reading this article and find out.

Excessive fat secretion

One of the main reasons why your dog can smell bad is that you have an overproduction of fat, meaning that your body, through its skin, generates more fat than normal.

In a normal way, dogs produce more sebum than people because their pores are much more open and their fur and coat need it more. This acts as a protective layer of the skin against infections, so they need it to be healthy. If we bathe them in excess we can destroy them and, then, cutaneous problems can appear. So, this is why, among other reasons, so dogs can not bathe every day.

So, if we bathe him too often, we use shampoos, deodorants and perfumes for people (with a pH different from that of canids) or we do not give a proper diet to our pet, we will cause him to decontrol the production of sebum, causing Bad smell.

Skin infections

If you think your pet smells bad, or more intensely, check the state of your skin immediately, since it is possible that you may have a skin infection, whether it is caused by injuries, allergies, dermatitis or parasitic infestations . In addition to detecting a strange and strong smell you will see other symptoms such as the fact that you can not stop scratching or that it hurts when caressing your skin.

In this case, to know if your pet suffers from any of the skin diseases common in dogs, you should go to the veterinarian promptly to detect the source of this problem and, thus, your dog can start the treatment as soon as possible, improving his state of health and his smell.

Lack of cleanliness

Just as excessive grooming can cause excessive production of fat and cause problems in the dermis and a horrible smell in our pet, the lack of hygiene will also make you wonder why my dog ​​smells bad?

We do not have to bathe our pet, in fact, once a month or a month and a half is more than enough; Even if you do not usually get dirty in the fields or parks, you can spend more time without using shampoo or perfumes on your skin, especially if you brush it daily. But, being too long without brushing or bathing our furry companion will end up smelling very badly. Think that the tangles in the hair will make dust and dirt accumulate more easily.

Therefore, if your hairy smells terrible and you think it is not due to other causes, think about when it was the last time you washed it in conditions and start by giving it a good brushing or take it to the dog grooming. If this was the problem with a good hygiene session will be resolved, if on the contrary there is an unbearable stench or a strange smell, better take it to the vet.

Discover in this other article how to brush my dog's hair properly to maintain a good cleanliness of this and make it look healthy.

Gastrointestinal disorders

The dogs can also smell fatal due to intestinal problems, they can have gas and flatulence problems produced by constipation, gastroenteritis or diarrhea . Therefore, if at times you feel a stink that comes from your hairy, make sure you know when it was the last time you made bowel movements or if, on the contrary, you had an episode of diarrhea or even vomiting. You should go to the veterinarian to finish determining what the problem is and, in this way, can offer you the best treatment so that it recovers as soon as possible.

Also, without your dog being sick, it is possible that his flatulence smells worse than other times. In this case, you should think if you have changed the type of food or brand recently, because it may not feel very good or that some of the components of the feed are difficult to digest for him. It would be better if you give it back the food of before or look for another brand with softer and easily digested ingredients.

Anal glands

Canids, like other animals, have glands at the sides of the anus that secrete a substance that helps them lubricate feces and serves as a mark of personal smell, which serves to communicate and recognize each other. Sometimes, this substance can thicken and cause the glands to get stuck, which causes the can feel discomfort and even pain in severe cases. In addition, other problems can occur in the anal glands and make our dog smell very bad.

To avoid this or solve it, it is vital that we learn to clean the anal and perianal area of ​​our dog, as we show you in this video. But, if you think you can not do it at home, you can take your pet to a canine hairdresser or veterinary center.

Otitis and ear infection

Another cause of bad odor in dogs is undoubtedly otitis and ear infections. Otitis in dogs is a very common condition in which there is an inflammation of the ear canal of these that can occur for different reasons, whether allergy, a foreign object, water accumulated by not drying the ears well, or even by a blow .

When an otitis is not treated in time, it easily results in an ear infection . in this case we will notice the same symptoms as in an inflammation but more exaggerated since the discomfort and pain will be greater and will make the animal scratch much more, shake the head in an exaggerated way and rub against objects seeking relief in their ears.

In both cases, due to inflammation, excess wax and even pus our pet will really smell bad and we should go to the vet. if it is not treated well and in time the infection can spread and even end up causing deafness.

Oral hygiene

Another possibility that your hairy can give off bad smell is your breath. If your dog has bad breath you should make sure that it does not have a buildup of tartar that can cause an infection in the mouth. Periodontal disease or excess accumulated tartar will make your best friend's mouth smell very bad. If you think this is the problem, you should ask the veterinarian for a time to have your mouth checked and decide if a professional cleaning is necessary and start a treatment to improve your condition.

Also, find in this other article how to avoid tartar on my dog's teeth so that this situation does not occur or recur.


Some medicines can enhance the smell of the dog and even produce odors other than usual. These happen with some antibiotics and, above all, with some medicines to treat kidney problems.

If your dog is following a treatment and you think it smells strange or very strong, discuss it with the specialist who prescribed it to know if it is possible that this is the reason or, if it is not likely to be, then perform the necessary tests to detect the origin of the stench.