What are mouth wart in dogs (Canine Oral Papillomas)?

Canine oral papillomas, also known as mouth warts in dogs, are small benign tumors of the mouth caused by the papilloma virus.

They are found on the lips, gums, and in the mouth, typically in shapes resembling cauliflower.  These warts can also be located on eyelids, feet, and footpads, but rarely.

Causes of mouth warts

Canine oral papillomas is common with puppies and young dogs under the age of two years old.

Puppies and young dogs are more susceptible to the papilloma virus because their immune system is not fully developed yet. As their immune system matures, they produce antibodies against the virus and the warts eventually disappear.

Canine oral papillomas can also affect older dogs that have compromised immune systems.

Canine oral papillomas are very contagious of which affected dogs can transmit the virus to other dogs through direct contact. This usually occurs when they greet each other, share toys, and eat or drink out of the same food or water bowl.  Because of this, it is common for puppies, young dogs, and older dogs to develop mouth warts (and other warts) when they are in a kennel or daycare.

The incubation period for canine papilloma viruses is usually 1 to 8 weeks from contact with an infected dog.

Prevention of mouth warts

There is no foolproof way to prevent dogs from developing warts. Dogs with warts in their mouth or on their skin should be kept away from susceptible dogs, because the viruses that cause warts are very contagious.

Treatment of mouth warts

Since canine oral papillomas are usually asymptomatic, treatment is often not indicated unless they become infected or become symptomatic. Infected papillomas can be painful and require a course of antibiotics.

Most cases of canine oral papillomas go away on their own within 1-5 months as the affected dog’s immune system matures and mounts a response to the virus.

Raising Canine and canine oral papillomas

Raising Canine does everything possible to keep our daycare, grooming and training facility clean and sanitized by following a detailed Policy and Process Manual of which our staff are evaluated on during their Staff Performance Review.  Failure to follow the Policy and Process Manual can lead to termination of employment.

We also have a policy that if we notice a dog has warts, we immediately contact the owner to pick up their dog and take home.  We also inform the owner to keep their dog away from Raising Canine until their vet has deemed him/her as non-contagious and fit to return to daycare.

Even though we try everything to prevent canine warts at Raising Canine, we, unfortunately, cannot guarantee that your dog will never develop canine oral papilomas while in our facility.  In fact, there is a high possibility that if you have a puppy or young dog, he/she will develop mouth warts as their immune systems are under-developed.  The same is for older dogs with suppressed immune systems.

Just a reminder that if your dog does develop a mouth wart(s), please call us immediately at 403.984.3644 so we can inform the other clients.

Also, if your dog does have a mouth wart(s), please keep your dog in the safety of your home and away from Raising Canine until your dog has been deemed non-contagious by your vet.

lIf you have any questions regarding Raising Canine and canine mouth warts, please feel free to contact the manager, Chanelle Van Entwerpen at 403.984.3644, and/or the owner, Velvetanne Madro at 403.818.3383.