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Wet nose and dry nose question

November 18th, 2007, 07:14 PM
I just noticed something and was curious.

Vlad is on one of his favorite spots, the top of the fridge, and I went to pet him. I felt his nose was wet, then a few seconds it was wet again. I wipe it and it gets wet again.

Now, I know when I pet them during the day, their noses are usually dry, and at night their noses are wetter.

Do you guys with cats notice the same thing? I keep my apartment at 70 degrees, because of the high ceilings it needs to be that temperature to just keep the place cool. It's warmer during the day because of the sunlight, but at night its of course cooler.

So is that perhaps the reason for dry during the day and wet at night?

November 18th, 2007, 07:42 PM
Cold wet nose is normal for either cats or dogs as is a dry warm nose - the only time you really need to worry about their noses is if they are showing other symptoms ie lethargy, cracked, flakey nose, fever etc

I have noticed that when Duffy's nose is dry if I rub her nose for a minute or so it will become wet - it is just a tearduct reaction ;)

from Veterinary applies to cats aswell
Pet Rx
Does the nose know dog health?

Can you tell if your dog is sick by checking his nose? Not really, but there's more to the story.

A dog's nose is usually damp because tears are constantly produced to lubricate the movement of the eyes. Because this lubrication is so critical to eye health, the dog's body routinely produces more tears than are needed. These excess tears flow through the naso-lacrimal (literally "nose-tears") duct and out the base of the nose. (People also experience this when crying.)

As the tears drip down into the dog's face, the animal licks the nose, spreading the tear fluid over the nose, which wets it. Then, evaporation causes the nose to be cool. The moistened nose is better equipped to dissolve airborne chemicals, which contributes to a better sense of smell.

When a dog is sick, the body uses up more internal fluids in the process of fighting disease. This increased use, especially with a fever, causes relative dehydration, even if the dog is drinking a normal amount of water. This dehydration results in decreased tear production, and hence a dry nose.

However, the same dry nose could be because of fluid loss from panting on a hot day. Some dogs have problems with blocked tear ducts, so there is less fluid flowing through the ducts to moisten the nose at all times.

The bottom line: A dry nose is one indicator of hydration, but it indicates illness only if it's coupled with lethargy and other symptoms.

A calm, relaxed dog officially has a fever when you either stick a thermometer where the sun doesn't shine or use one of the new instant ear thermometers and determine that the dog's temperature is above 102.5 degrees Fahrenheit.

(Pet Rx is provided by the Veterinary Information Network (, an online service for veterinary professionals. More information can be found at

November 18th, 2007, 07:49 PM
Thanks for the answer. Yeah, I rubbed his nose, then it was wet again not long after that.

That's interesting though about the whole tear duct thing.

November 18th, 2007, 07:53 PM
Same is true for humans - you'll notice when you're crying you often need to blow your nose - same reaction

Cats & dogs don't usually cry through the tearducts from the eyes the same way humans do - though with some dogs esp you will see the "clear eye goopies". Just like cats & dogs only sweat through their feet ;) same reaction as humans but different release system.

November 18th, 2007, 07:59 PM
I thought it was normal, but I just wasn't sure why at different times the nose was wet or dry.

I didn't know that they sweat through their feet. That's very interesting.

November 18th, 2007, 08:07 PM
Time of day for nose wetness might just be the air is dryer & warmer in the daytime so they produce more wetness to regulate temp (every cats' internal temp is different so you don't need to change the temp in your apt providing it's not too hot or too cold)

yup sweaty :cloud9: :pawprint: :lovestruck:

really cute when they're @ the vet & they leave sweaty paw prints on the exam table :laugh:

November 18th, 2007, 08:21 PM
Oh, it gets way too hot in this place if raise the AC temperature. I couldn't leave them in here it being so hot.

I'll have to take a look next time I go to the vet and look at the table. At least the new little ones. Vlad and Oksana will NOT put their feet on the exam table. When I try they start to meow and get super nervous and growly so I usually wind up carrying them.:D

November 18th, 2007, 08:46 PM
They don't always sweat @ the vet but I have noticed it if the cat is particularly nervous @ the time :pawprint: :D

November 18th, 2007, 08:48 PM
Sometimes these six noses are wet, and sometimes they are dry... with no seeming rhyme or reason. :shrug:

November 19th, 2007, 08:12 AM
See, that's why I love coming here. Now at least I know that a dry and wet nose are both normal, for the most part. :D