Pale Gums in Dogs: What It Means, Treatments & Solutions

cute dog with open mouth
Reading Time: 5 minutes

Pale gums can be a sign of many different health problems, from simpler issues like stress or pain to more complex issues like trauma or cancer. Unless a dog is outwardly bleeding, it may be difficult to determine the cause, and diagnosis by a veterinarian is almost always needed. Some causes (such as certain infections or trauma) may be treatable, whilst others may require life-long management. 


Mild to Moderate

Table of Content

Key points

  • Pale gums can have many causes and require diagnosis by a vet.
  • Diagnosis may include examination by a veterinarian, blood tests, and sometimes imaging or advanced tests
  • Some causes of pale gums may be curable, but some require life-long management.
  • Some causes of pale gums can be prevented
  • Certain causes of pale gums can be passed to other pets or humans

Common in:

Symptoms and types:

Pale gums can be a sign of many different problems, including bleeding, heart disease, or severe dehydration. Diagnosis requires a vet exam and further testing

Understanding the diagnostics

Learning about the causes

1. Anaemia

2. Poor Perfusion

If a dog’s gums are pale pink, white, bright red, yellow, grey, or blue, then this is a sign that they are sick and should see a vet. 

Best treatment options

Home remedies and their effectiveness

There are no effective home remedies for pale gums, as the cause of the paleness needs to be diagnosed by a vet. In particular, iron supplements are not useful for pale gums, as iron deficiency is very rare as a cause of anaemia in dogs (unlike in people). 

When to see a vet


Ruth graduated from Cambridge in 2014 and has worked as a small animal GP vet ever since. She is particularly interested in internal medicine, as it combines her love of problem-solving and her somewhat geeky love of knowledge, and has completed her certificate in Small Animal Medicine. She loves animals of all species but is particularly fond of cats.

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