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Latest health and behavior news and advice from the veterinarians at Tufts University.

Dog Health & Medicine

When Your Dog Smells Really, Really Bad

When Your Dog Smells Really, Really Bad

How to handle dog odor that goes beyond the norm.

There’s no getting around it — dogs can smell pretty stinky. Some of the odor comes from bacteria and yeast in the skin that break down and oxidize oils (fats) on the skin’s surface. That fat breakdown releases the telltale volatile compounds that we associate with dogs’ un-perfume-like scent. Some of the nasty odor also comes from the waste left behind on a dog’s coat by resident microorganisms, and some comes from sweat.

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