My Dog Has A Blood Blister

My Dog Has A Blood Blister?

Last Updated: August 20, 2023
correct answerThe Short Answer is:

It is likely that a blood vessel will burst in your dog, resulting in a blood blister. Most commonly, they occur when your dog scratches or shakes a lot. Blood vessels and skin may be damaged by this irritation in some cases. Since the blood vessels in your dog's ears are more fragile, they are more likely to develop blood blisters.

In this article you will know the answer to the query “My Dog Has A Blood Blister?“.

The new chew toy you got for Rover is great. Especially since it has a loud squeaker. He tilts his head when he hears that sound perking up those cute ears. Its no wonder he loves it. Its awesome to watch him chew that thing for all its worth!

My Dog Has A Blood Blister

The next day after a run hes panting while his tongue lolls. It happens to everyone. Suddenly a dark spot appears on that pink tongue and you wonder “What the hell is that?”? No tick would do that would it? How could it be? 

Its probably a blood blister according to a quick Google search. On the tongue? What the heck?

How do we proceed? What are the risks? Do we need a veterinarian? Can it be popped? What is the pain like?

Donot say another word. Its all taken care of.

What is a blood blister?

The blood blisters on your skin are little bumps that become filled with blood. In general they are not harmful or painful (though they can be very painful). A blood blister looks like a pocket of skin with dark blood inside; they are often black or purple.

This is not the same thing as a hematoma which is caused when blood seeps into the surrounding tissue. It causes the blood vessels in your body to burst when you (or your pet) get a really hard knock somewhere on your body. In a similar fashion to when you get a black eye this blood then seeps into the surrounding tissue causing a large bruise. The skin would not be raised nor will there be a blister. 

Adding to the confusion blisters are often classified as hematomas. This is because of English.

What are they also known as?

Various names are given to blood blisters and some of them sound ominous. They include:

Blisters on the coma

Delay in blistering

Blister fracture

An edema blister

Blisters from friction

A blister that is sucking

Thats right you read that correctly. An infected blister. What an odd name!

What causes blood blisters?

Similar to their clear counterparts blood blisters are typically caused by friction. The skin usually forms blisters filled with clear fluid when it experiences a lot of friction. Sometimes the clear fluid is mixed with blood from ruptured vessels. Blood blisters form when that happens. Blood blisters are typically red at first but the color darkens over time becoming dark red or even purple.

Lets narrow down the definition of friction. When your dog goes wild with the scratching it can irritate his skin to the point of forming a blood blister. The most commonplace for this to occur is behind the ears. He does not have much hair on that part of his body. Sometimes the hair layer acts as a barrier protecting him from the sharp edges of his own nails.

Where can they be found on a dog’s body?

Your pups skin may develop a blood blister just about anywhere excessive pressure has been applied. A pinched finger rubbing on something or stepping on something just sharp enough to hurt without cutting the skin could cause this. Pets typically get fleas on their paws stomachs bellies legs ears between their toes or even on their tongues. Yeah when Rover gets too enthusiastic with his new chew toy thats what happens. 

You might think its crazy that your pup can have blood blisters just about anywhere on his body but its true. Often things can get a bit rowdy when he plays. His belly gets pinched as he jumps over a log thats just a tad too high. He bites his tongue when he gets too into his chew toy. Its not uncommon for him to step on a stick or stone positioned just right pinching his paws as he runs in the park. All of these scenarios as well as a gazillion others can cause a blood blister.

How can they be treated?

It is usually not necessary to treat blood blisters because they are not severe. It may take weeks or even months for them to heal without any intervention. In more severe cases you may need to take your pup to the vet. The patient might suffer seizures comas organ failure neurological damage pain and incontinence as a result of this situation. A severe case is extremely rare and usually accompanied by secondary infections. Donot worry. Rover will probably be okay.

However if your pup scratched at the blood blister it might get worse if it is painful. Dogs suffering from ear mites are an example. Your fur kids ears will itch like theres no tomorrow from these pesky insects so he will scratch constantly at them. This results in blood blisters. Consequently hes at risk of cutting the blister which could lead to secondary infection and other nasty side effects.

You should take your dog to the vet immediately if he scratches at the blood blister or is in pain. Your vet will assess the situation and determine what needs to be done. The options are as follows:

Drain the blister: The blister may refill with blood depending on the circumstances.

Prevent the blister from bursting: again by draining it temporarily.

Surgery: during which Rover is sedated. In this case the vet will drain the blister remove any blood clots that have formed and suture the area so blood can not reenter the blister.

If your dog had a blood blister in his ear it could be bandaged so that it does not slap against his head. In addition to the collar he’ll likely get one of those super stylish Elizabethan collars to prevent him from scratching at the wound.

Leaving a small blood blister alone would not cause any problems if it isnot going to cause any trouble. Donot try and drain it on your own. You could end up with secondary infections that cause much more trouble than they’re worth. Consult a veterinarian if you’re unsure.

How long will they last?

Healing blood blisters on their own can take weeks or even months. The recovery time is typically faster for your pup if you take him to the vet for treatment although that may not always be the case.

How can they be prevented?

It is undoubtedly possible to prevent some blood blisters but it would be hard to prevent all of them. By treating itchy problems like ear mites dermatitis and allergies you can usually prevent blisters caused by scratching. Everything that causes your pup to scratch excessively.

What is the difference between a tick and a blood blister?

Ticks are parasites that eat the blood of your furry companion. Upon latching on to the skin it suctions blood until it is full or removed whichever comes first. Blood blisters are skin injuries. They’re nothing alike. 

It could look like a tick until you look closely if the blood blister is small and hard. Consult your veterinarian if you are not sure.

How are blood blisters different from vascular tumors?

A Vascular tumor is a lump that develops from a blood vessel. We may not be able to see them inside the body or near the skin. They could appear like blood blisters in some cases but they are not. A tumor is a cancerous growth. They can be benign and not spread or they can be harmful and spread.

You can take your dog to the vet for a checkup if you see anything suspicious on his skin.

What other types of blisters might dogs get?

A dogs skin is covered in all sorts of strange and wonderful things. Others are more serious and require medical attention while others are benign and disappear within a day. Below is a list of the most common dog blisters:

Pyodermas: An infection of the skin caused by bacteria. The condition is not contagious but it causes a lot of itching and can lead to secondary infections.

Skinfold dermatitis: It is a type of allergic reaction that is particularly common in bulldogs. You can cause serious health problems to your furkid if you do not treat it.

Cutaneous lymphoma: The symptoms of this type of skin cancer include itchy ulcers red skin and nodules. This type of skin cancer is sometimes incurable.


Many things can cause dogs to get blood blisters and they are surprisingly common. Usually blood blisters form when the skin is pinched or is subjected to friction.

Your pup may scratch himself too much bite his own tongue step on something sharp or even get chafed by something.

Dogs can get blood blisters all over their bodies most commonly on their ears their tongues and their feet. 

A blood blister does not need to be painful to heal. However if he scratches at them continuously he may cut them and cause an infection.

If you notice your puppy scratching at what appears to be a blood blister take him to the veterinarian for a checkup. Veterinarians can recommend treatment ranging from draining the blister to surgery.

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Amanda Dogs Trainer

Amanda (Author)

With over a decade of experience, Amanda is a distinguished dog trainer. Her expertise in canine behavior has transformed countless lives, fostering harmonious human-canine connections. Through compassionate and personalized approaches, she empowers owners to understand and connect with their furry companions, creating a legacy of joyful tails and transformed lives.

Osvaldo Maciel Dogs Trainer

Osvaldo Maciel (Content Reviewer)

Osvaldo Maciel, a stalwart in the field with 14 years of experience, is a revered dog trainer. His journey is defined by a profound understanding of canine behavior, shaping unbreakable human-canine bonds. Osvaldo guides owners to connect with their beloved pets, leaving an indelible mark of happiness and transformation. His legacy shines through the countless lives he has touched.

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