If we’re honest, nobody really loves slobber. But many of us do have a slobberer in our lives that we do love truly and deeply. When it comes to the glorious canine art of slobbering the best approach is to accept it and celebrate it.
Those were the sentiments of slobber appreciator, Jennifer Costello when she chose November 16th and declared it National Slobber Appreciation Day.1 We’re only surprised that somebody didn’t do it sooner! What a wonderful opportunity to playfully bring awareness to those canines that, no matter what the circumstances, always seem to have a dollop of slimy goo lurking around their muzzle region.
How Did National Slobber Appreciation Day Come About?
The Newfoundland breed of dog is a notorious slobberer. One might say it’s the best in the business. Pages have been written about their salivary tendencies. Their drool has been categorized and nicknamed. Back in 2012, a gadget was designed for Newfies (and other wet-mouthed breeds) that supposedly captured the dog’s drool before it could escape. We won’t get into the many reasons here why this mask is just a bad idea. As would be expected the backlash from Newfie owners and dog lovers was substantial.
Vet technician, Newfoundland fur parent and blogger, Jennifer Costello felt compelled to respond in defense of the many beloved Newfies and other slobberers around the world. Rightly so, she contended that a dog’s slobber is not meant to be captured and kept in a “face diaper” on the dog’s head for hours on end.
In rebuttal and to raise awareness of this particular ignorance of canine physiology, she declared November 16th to be Slobber Appreciation Day. Since 2012 it has been celebrated every year and continues to garner attention and grow in popularity.
The day is not solely a celebration of the glorious Newfies slobbering accomplishments, but those of all canine slobbering breeds around the world.
How Can I Celebrate?
There are so many ways for you to get into the gooey spirit of things and celebrate this fun day. There are no rules or guidelines, so any idea you have is a good one. But if you’re struggling to come up with any of your own, here are some of our ideas:
Why Do Dogs Slobber?
Drooling and slobbering are different words used to describe salivation which is a normal physiological function in dogs and other animals. Of course, certain dog breeds naturally salivate more than others. The reason for this is that the design of their mouths is such that they are unable to accommodate all the saliva that is produced so it leaks out through their jowls.
Saliva has multiple functions. It helps keep the oral environment moist and washes away any debris that is bound to find its way in there. Dogs need to produce plenty of saliva to help move their food into their stomach. Unlike humans, dogs don’t need to chew their food into small pieces to begin the digestive process as this only commences once the food is in the stomach.
That’s why they begin to salivate excessively if they see, smell or taste something delicious. Their mouth is preparing to engulf that tasty morsel and wash it down into their stomach. It’s a reflexive response over which they have no conscious control.
What Is Abnormal Slobbering?
Just because a dog slobbers copiously, drenching all and sundry, does not mean that there is something wrong with it. If the way and amount that a dog salivates has been more or less consistent during its adult life, then there is most likely no cause for concern. However, if a dog begins to slobber more, or less, than usual this could be a sign that there may be something wrong with it. A dog displaying these signs should be taken to the vet for a check-up immediately. Make sure to describe what you have observed.
Excessive and unusual drooling is known as hypersalivation or ptyalism. It may be symptomatic of an underlying issue such as a gastrointestinal disorder, choking, periodontal disease, poisoning, anxiety, pain or a viral or bacterial infection. Many of these are serious and some can be life-threatening so expert veterinary advice must be obtained without hesitation.
Tips For Managing The Slobberer in Your Life
Towels, more towels and, you guessed it, some more towels! If you own a slobber-chops you would undoubtedly already have a stash of drool-towels in your arsenal. If you’re the proud new fur parent to a slobberer then stock up now.
Owners of Newfies and other slobbery breeds say that they have towels strategically placed around the house to mop up the constant dribble.
Bibs are also an option for your messy pup. These can be of a simple bandana style, in which case large square off-cuts of absorbent material will do the job just fine. If you are handy with a sewing machine you can run some up yourself, trying out different fabrics and designs. Otherwise, they are available from various pet stores and online pet supply retailers. Be sure to change and wash your pup’s bib regularly, at least every couple of hours.
You need to prepare yourself for regular, quick daily slobber mop jobs. You will most likely have to allocate a bit of time on the weekends for cleaning dried-up slobber off of various household surfaces. There’ll probably also be a bit of extra laundry. Sounds a bit tedious? Nah, we think that all in all, this little bit of extra work is well worth the privilege of getting to share your life with a great big goofy and loving slobber chops.
Safety tip: Beware if you have smooth floors in your home! An invisible puddle of drool is as treacherously slippery as black ice!
Slobber is not for everyone. Some devoted fur parents just can’t handle it, and that’s perfectly fine. Fortunately, not all dogs slobber excessively. For those who would rather opt out of the slobber fest, a dry-mouthed dog breed is the way to go.
Many fur parents are perfectly happy to live with it—it’s no problem at all. They either barely notice it or they just have good slobber-management strategies in place. Either way, the soggy-mouthed canines of the world are no less lovable than any other mutt. Some might say it makes them even more interesting and endearing. So, go out and celebrate these special hounds on November 16th for National Slobber Appreciation Day.
Featured Image Credit: Reddogs, Shutterstock