Liver spots on dogs

Liver spots on dogs

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Liver spots on dogs.

This article was published to rse awareness on this often neglected condition and so hopefully stop dogs with this potentially life-threatening problem.

Most dogs seem to be happy when they have spots on their skin! The spots are called liver spots, also known as dermatologic liver spots or liver haemorrhages. A skin condition in which dark liver spots are often seen is known as 'chronic haemorrhagic diathesis' (CHD).

This is just a reminder that even though our furry friends look so lovely, their skin may have various different underlying health issues!

What are liver spots?

Liver spots are areas on the skin that look pink or red, or even a deep purple. They may also become darker and can have a yellow or white appearance. Liver spots are a non-cancerous growth of skin cells that are present in older animals. They do not always cause problems, but in some dogs with more severe liver disease, it can be a precursor to cancer.

In order for liver spots to be a medical concern, they need to be present on a lot of the dog’s skin. If a spot is the only thing visible, it is unlikely to be a problem. On very old or sick dogs, liver spots can appear to be cancerous but that is only because these spots are a sign of liver disease and cancer. This is why liver spots are not considered a disease, but simply a sign of older dogs. They may affect different parts of the body. On dogs with liver problems, liver spots may appear on the abdomen, face, ears, shoulders and legs.

Liver spots are a normal part of ageing and not a sign of illness.

There are many different types of liver spots, including:






There are a number of causes of liver spots, but there are two mn categories.

Congenital or hereditary


Hereditary liver spots can occur when the canine pigment cells are unable to fully metabolise the pigments called bilirubin. These may accumulate as a result of a genetic mutation. If this happens, liver cells may be unable to keep it from accumulating, resulting in liver spots.

Liver spots that are hereditary are relatively easy to correct if caught early. The spots should be removed, as they can spread through the dog’s bloodstream. If possible, the dog’s skin should be cleansed and the spots should be removed with a scalpel.

If liver spots are the only issue, they should be removed because they can become malignant, but they should not be removed if there is any cause for concern about cancer. In cases where there is liver disease present, the liver spots should be removed as well. They should be checked with a microscope to ensure that they are not malignant before surgery.

Congenital or hereditary liver spots

In order for a dog to develop congenital liver spots, a problem is required that prevents the pigment cells from metabolising bilirubin. As long as the liver is working properly, no problems should arise.

In some breeds, liver spots appear due to a hereditary condition known as liverwort. This type of liver spot occurs when the pigment cells in the dog are affected by a deficiency in the genes that control the manufacture of a substance called bilirubin.

Some dog breeds that have this spot include:


Golden Retriever

German Shepherd

These dogs are particularly prone to this type of spot. If a dog with this spot shows any sign of liver problems, such as liver flukes, the dog should be treated.

This spot may also appear as white spots on the dog’s coat. The spots can appear on the head, legs or even the chest of the dog. These spots can turn yellow or brown as the dog ages.

If the spots are a problem, then the dog should be tested to ensure that the dog is not affected by this genetic condition. If this condition is found, then it can be treated by using a medication such as Phenobarbital.

Other liver spots

There are other types of liver spots that can occur in dogs. These types of liver spots include:

A condition known as blue spots

This type of liver spot can appear in many breeds. In this condition, the liver spots look like a blue colour. There are also spots that occur along with this.

Some dog breeds that have this include:

Border Terrier

Bull Terrier


Bull Terrier

Some other dogs that can have blue spots are:



German Shepherd

German Shepherd


If this liver spot is found, then the dog should be taken to a vet. In addition, the dog may have to be put on a special diet. The dog may also have to be tested to make sure that the dog is not affected by this spot.

This is a type of discolouration that may be a problem for some dogs. This problem also occurs as a result of the presence of a fungus.

Fungal liver spots occur in some dogs and may also occur on the heart, mouth and other places on the body. When this spot is found, then the dog may have to be treated.

The fungus that causes this problem can be treated by using medication. It is also possible to use a shampoo that kills the fungus.

The fungus is also known as a histoplasma species. It affects the liver and can cause the fungus to form on the liver surface.

If the spot is found on the heart, then it may be possible to treat the problem by using medication. It is possible that the spot will fade on its own over time. However, this spot may also take quite a bit of time to fade.

The mn thing to do if a dog is affected by this problem is to take the dog to a vet. The vet will need to perform a number of tests to make sure that the dog is affected by this.

The vet will then need to make sure that the dog is not affected by the disease and has not been given the disease.

Once the disease has been treated, then the vet will need to monitor the dog. The vet may need to follow up regularly to check that the dog is free from the problem.

What to do if your dog is affected by Liver Spot

The most important thing to do if your dog is affected by a liver spot is to take the dog to a vet. A vet will need to perform a number of tests to make sure that the dog is affected by the problem.

If your dog is affected by this, the vet will need to perform an ultrasound to check that the dog’s liver is in good condition. This will check to see if there are any problems with the dog’s liver.

You will also need to give the dog a blood test to make sure that the dog is not affected by this. If your dog is affected by this, the test may tell you that the dog has a liver that is working quite well. However, it will not necessarily tell you whether or not the dog is affected by this problem.

Once the tests are completed, then you can start to talk to the vet about treating the dog. If the liver is affected, then the vet will need to treat the dog to stop the problem.

If the liver is not affected, then the vet will need to


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