Do Shar-Peis Drool? Read This First!

Shar-Peis are one of the oldest dog breeds, native to the south of China and dating back almost 2000 years to the age of the Han Dynasty. The history of Shar-Peis dates back almost 2000 years to the Han Dynasty in China. They were assumed to be pleasant and versatile dogs.

do shar peis drool
Do Shar-Peis Drool?

It was for this reason that Shar-Peis were bred and trained to herd, hunt, and protect property and livestock against thieves and predators. The breed was raised, owned, and used by Chinese farmers, but was also unfortunately often favored for illegal dog fighting.

After the establishment of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, the then-communist regime strictly restrained dog ownership, and much of the purebred population was wiped out, almost leading to the breed’s extinction. Nonetheless, a handful of purebred Shar-Peis could still be found in Taiwan and Hong Kong.

Interest in the breed in the USA began to grow after its official introduction and documentation in the mid-1960s and 1970s. It was due to the appeal of the Matgo Law of Down-Homes Kennels in Hong Kong to the American enthusiasts of the breed that Shar-Peis were able to be brought back from the brink of extinction despite the stringent influence of communism in the 1950s. Soon enough, the breed became famous across the United States, and the American Kennel Club began to accept and recognize the Chinese Shar-Pei in 1988 and 1992 respectively.

To address the question of this article, yes – Shar-Peis do drool and can often make a mess after drinking water. This is due to the nature of their jowls and the shape of their mouths. It’s quite normal for your shar-pei to be drooling, but in some circumstances, excessive drooling may be a sign of an underlying problem.

Eager to learn more about Shar-Peis drooling? Read on!

Shar-peis drooling may be normal or abnormal

As previously stated, drooling is perfectly normal behavior for a shar-pei. Below are some common natural factors that may cause your shar-pei to drool:

  • The smell of food, bringing out his bag of kibble, or simply seeing you eating. This is a phenomenon referred to as the “Pavlov reflex”.
  • Excitement is caused by playing, walking, sexual urges when sighting females, etc.

Sometimes your shar-pei may appear to be drooling more than normal. This can be a sign of some difficulty they are experiencing. Below are some of the factors that can cause abnormal or excessive drooling:

  • A tooth growth that causes pain and discomfort.
  • Obstruction around their esophagus, results in difficulty in swallowing.
  • Tongue trauma.
  • Stomach problems such as indigestion, nausea, vomiting, etc.
  • Poisoning.
  • Dental and oral problems such as gingivitis, tumors, irritations, lesions, stomatitis, etc.
  • Swellings around the jawbones.
  • Fever.
  • Diseases like Rabies etc.
  • Overheating.
  • Heatstroke.
  • Eating harmful substances such as chocolate, cocoa mulch, antifreeze, etc.
  • Certain metabolic problems
  • Exposure to caustic agents such as insect stings and chemicals.

To learn more about the causes behind hypersalivation ptyalism or excessive drooling in Shar-Peis, click here!

shar-pei dog drooling
Shar-Pei dog drooling

What should I do when my shar-pei drools excessively?

Whenever you notice your Shar-Peis drooling more than usual, your veterinarian should be your first resort. However, there are some signs you should watch for before visiting your vet or nearest veterinary hospital. These signs include:

  • Swelling, trauma, and growth around the oral cavity.
  • Swallowing, eating, and drinking problems.
  • Weight loss.
  • Bad breath.
  • Gagging.
  • Coughing.
  • Fever.
  • Lethargy.
  • Respiratory or breathing difficulty.
  • Frequent and excessive vomiting.
  • Nature of the odor coming from the mouth.
  • Time and duration of when the drooling started.

This is necessary for your veterinarian to have a complete history of the problem. With this complete history, physical examination (including both oral and dental examinations), and presenting clinical signs, your veterinarian will be better able to provide a diagnosis and treatment. Some of the additional medical tests that can be done on Shar-Peis or dogs with the same drooling problem include:

  • Dental X-rays to screen or rule out dental problems
  • Lesion biopsy
  • Complete blood count to check the blood profile for infection.
  • Urinalysis to check the metabolic status
  • Liver function test
  • Chest and abdominal X-rays to diagnose or rule out associated problems.
  • Neurological examination
  • Screening tests for poisoning

However, the treatment your vet may prescribe is dependent on his or her diagnosis. The treatment could be surgical or medical or a combination of both. It can involve surgical intervention when there’s a foreign body or growth lodging in the oral cavity, esophagus, etc.

Medication will be given on its own if there is no need for surgery. Some of the treatments that can be prescribed by your veterinarian include:

  • Systemic antibiotics
  • Analgesics for pain relief
  • Antidotes in case of poisoning
  • Fluid therapy in case of poisoning
  • Appetite stimulants etc.

It’s important to note that failing to follow your veterinarian’s instructions could be detrimental to your dog’s health. These instructions are given to prevent any complications that can result from the indiscriminate use of medication and to prevent drug or medication resistance.

Furthermore, rabies is a significant disease that affects dogs. Excessive drooling is known to be one of the manifesting clinical signs of rabies. Therefore, you should make sure to get your dog vaccinated against rabies from 3 months old along with an annual routine booster.

stuart and his dog

Family Dog Expert Author

Hi there! I’m Stuart, a devoted dog lover and family dog expert with over a decade of experience working with our furry companions. My passion for dogs drives me to share my knowledge and expertise, helping families build strong, loving bonds with their four-legged friends. When I’m not writing for SirDoggie, you’ll find me hiking, playing with my beautiful dog, or studying music.