Why Are My Male Dog Nipples Itchy?

correct answerThe Short Answer is:

An itchy nipple in a dog can be caused by an allergic skin condition a flea infestation or a food allergy. Itchy nipples can occur in both males and females and can cause a lot of discomfort for dogs. An itchy dog scratched its bellies or rubbed its bellies against a surface if it had itchy nipples. There are also bacterial skin infections fungal infections and mites that cause itchy nipples.

In this research you will know the answer to the query “Why Are My Male Dog Nipples Itchy?“.

Do you notice that your male dog vigorously rubs his nipples against a surface or itches with the back of his paws? Does he have red and swollen nipples? Does he have a nipple discharge that is pus-like or bloody? 

Answering yes to any of the above questions and being concerned about your dog is perfectly understandable. You can have itchy nipples on your dog due to the season an allergic reaction an infection or something more serious.

The purpose of this research was to discuss how a male dog can get itchy nipples for various. However first things first why do a male dog male dogs have nipples?

Why do male dogs have nipples?

Both males and female dogs have nipples just like human beings. This is a little confusing since male dogs do not need nipples at all since they do not have babies and do not have to nurture puppies. So why do they have nipples? Due to the fact that male and female embryos are identical during the development of a fetus and they both have nipples at that stage this makes sense. 

Embryos are indistinguishable from one another in every form before they develop sex organs. They have nipples. After they develop the sex organs that differentiate them into males and females the nipples remain intact for the males even though they are of no use to them. Human males also have nipples for this reason. Male mammalian animals such as dogs cats pigs etc. almost all have nipples. 

How many nipples do dogs have?

A dogs number of nipples varies according to its size and breed type. Small dog breeds usually have 8 nipples while large dog breeds usually have 10 nipples. Dogs’ nipples can be found between the groin area and the torso or stomach. A dogs nipples can be found when it lies on its back; it has two rows one row of four to five nipples on the left side and an identical row on the right. 

Each pair of nipples has a unique pattern depending on their location; 

  • The cranial thoracic nipples are one pair
  • A pair of caudal thoracic nipples
  • One pair of cranial abdominal nipples
  • once caudal abdominal nipples
  • once inguinal nipples

Nipples on dogs do not disappear with age; they are present from birth and remain so throughout the dogs lifetime.

Why do male dogs have itchy nipples?

An itchy nipple in a dog can be caused by an allergic skin condition a flea infestation or a food allergy. Itchy nipples can occur in both males and females and can cause a lot of discomfort for dogs. An itchy dog scratched its bellies or rubbed its bellies against a surface if it had itchy nipples.

There are also bacterial skin infections fungal infections and mites that cause itchy nipples. Trying to determine the cause of nipples in your dog is the first step in treating it. See if there is an allergy condition that you’re not aware of if they have fleas or if there is an infection. The solution to the problem will depend largely on the cause and you may need the help of your veterinarian. 

What is the black gunk around a male dog’s nipples?

Your male dog may have black gunk around his nipples for a variety of reasons. One reason might be environmental dirt. Naturally dogs produce a natural oil that moisturizes the skin around their nipples but this oil can get dirty and look dirty and dark at times. 

Additionally dogs that cannot properly groom their nipples may have black gunk around their nipples. You should consider giving your dog a good bath if you notice this around his nipples. 

Additionally the dirt around your dogs nipples may be flea dirt. When your dog has been scratching a lot lately and you notice dark spots that fall off when touched this may be an indication of flea infestation. When fleas feed off of a dog they leave behind feces that are dark in color. A flea infestation is a serious problem that must be treated immediately. 

Why is there dried blood around my male dog’s nipple?

An area of dried blood around your dogs nipple is certainly caused for concern. Do not panic just yet because it may be caused by excessive scratching and itching. If your dog has been itching It is possible that your dog injured himself while itching if it has been itching a lot and you find dried blood around his nipple.

Its vital in this case that you identify the cause of the itchy nipple and have it treated. You need to figure out whether the problem is a bacterial infection a skin allergy a food allergy a flea or mite infestation or a fungal infestation. Your veterinarian may be able to help.

Nipples that are swollen or sensitive to touch may be a sign that your dog is suffering from a more serious problem. Check to see if an abscess has formed around the nipple or if there is a foreign object such as a stick or sharp object stuck in the nipple. 

Breast cancer in male dogs is very rare but one of the symptoms is nipple discharge that is pussy or bloody. Consult your vet if you are unsure where the dried blood on your male dogs nipple is coming from. 

What causes inverted nipples in male dogs?

Dogs with inverted nipples are quite common and are not a cause for concern at all. Dogs with inverted nipples are usually congenital and present at birth which means they are not bothered by it. Dogs can have inverted nipples either in males or females and its mostly genetic especially if they are present at birth. 

It is absolutely unnecessary to be concerned if your puppy has inverted nipples. There is only one reason why inverted nipples should be of concern: they can attract dirt. As dirt can accumulate in them you should pay special attention to them when bathing your dog and clean them frequently.

Nipples inverted in dogs are not a problem they are perfectly normal and only require extra care to prevent a smelly build-up of dirt and bacterial infection. 

Why do male dog nipples sometimes become swollen?

A swollen inflamed and painful nipple on your male dog will certainly make you curious as to what could cause it. Swollen nipples in male dogs can be caused by a number of things so I have compiled a shortlist of the possible causes. 


If the nipples have been injured or irritated by excessive scratching pests or parasites an injury etc. they may become tender and swollen. It is not very serious and you can help your dog by identifying the cause to prevent further irritation. 


This is a condition that occurs more often in female dogs but it can also affect male dogs. A bacterial infection or trauma to the teat can lead to mastitis an inflammation of the mammary glands. Some common symptoms of mastitis include swollen and painful mammary glands discharge from the nipples discolored and warm nipples and very sensitive nipples.   


Anemia is a condition in which the dogs body produces insufficient red blood cells or hemoglobin. The cause of this is usually an underlying disease such as cancer stomach ulcers severe blood loss caused by an injury or accident blood loss from parasites such as fleas kidney disease etc. Anemia symptoms include rapid breathing irregular heartbeat pale eyes and gums lethargy weight loss swelling in the face jaws and teats among others. 


Tumors of the mammary gland are rare in male dogs but they still occur. A mammary tumor typically grows around the nipple area and they come in a variety of sizes. The growth can cause swelling and pain in the nipples. 

This condition is characterized by swollen and painful mammary glands bloody discharge from the nipples lethargy loss of appetite lameness etc. Breast tumors can be benign or cancerous so they need to be treated immediately.

Testicular tumors

Swollen nipples are also a symptom of testicular tumors in male dogs. Among intact male dogs the testicular tumor is the most common genital tumor; it also occurs in neutered male dogs but to a lesser degree. Testicular tumor symptoms include swellings in one or both testicles an enlarged testicle or asymmetric testicles reduced sex drive blood in the urine lethargy loss of appetite poor hair regrowth etc. 


You may find that your dog has itchy nipples for a number of reasons such as parasite infection allergic reaction a bacterial or fungal infection. Dogs are usually frustrated by itchy nipples. 

Donot engage in a guessing game if you notice swelling and inflammation in your male dogs nipples. Instead seek the advice of your veterinarian. To make the correct diagnosis and decide on the best course of action your veterinarian will perform some tests. The best course of action is to take your dog to a veterinarian for treatment.

If you want to read more about dog health tips read here: Dog Health Tips and Tricks.

Why Are My Male Dog Nipples Itchy? (Watch Video)

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