Home / Dog Health / Black Spots on Dog’s Skin (Belly, Pictures): What to do

Black Spots on Dog’s Skin (Belly, Pictures): What to do

What are the black spots on dog skin? Your canine pet can get black patches and specks on back, tail, legs, belly, on gums and more. Should you be worried? Black spots on dog’s skin does not pose any health danger. Although you should get concerned if they are itchy, causing discomfort or leading the dog to scratch and bite the skin.

Your vet should also be allowed to study them and prescribe a treatment. Home remedies treatments such as coconut oil, hydrogen peroxide may also come in handy in sending skin spots away. Flea bites, allergens, scabies, ageing, yeast infection and malnutrition are the most causes of black patches or spots on your pet.

Sometimes dark patches can be normal especially in friction area such as under legs, armpits and belly. Some dogs also get dark pigmentation when they age.

When dog skin is turning black, it may also a be sign of a serious underlying medical condition that requires immediate diagnosis and treatment by a vet.

Why is my dog getting more black spots?

black spots on dog's skin picture
black spots on dog’s skin picture

The following are causes of dark patches on your pooch:

  1. Allergens

Food allergy, insect bites and contact allergies can cause darkening of the skin. Severe allergic reaction in dogs can lead to black patches thick skin, itchy and inflamed skin. Others symptoms of allergy include hair loss, biting and licking, watery eyes, vomiting and diarrhea.

You should see a vet when you suspect a severe allergic reaction. Steroid treatments and antihistamines are commonly used in treatment of allergy. A vet may also recommend you to induce vomiting with hydrogen peroxide if the dog has ingested harmful materials.

  1. Scabies

Also called Sarcoptic mange, scabies is a type of disease caused by microscopic mites hide in the dog’s skin. Black dots on the ear flaps, elbows, abdomen, hocks and chest shows that your pet might be having scabies.

It is not easy to diagnose scabies, therefore need to consult a vet who can prescribe a topical treatment. Scabies are contagious and can be transferred from one dog to another. Dogs from the daycare and parks might be at risk. Therefore, there is need to separate your dog from others when you discover scabies.

  1. Flea Bites

Fleas are common and they cause itching, black spots and crusty scabs on dogs. They are notorious and need to be controlled. Allergic reaction to flea bites can make your pooch very uncomfortable. Flea infection should be diagnosed and treated by a vet.

  1. Yeast infection

Dogs with a yeast infection has itchy irritated skin and also smells stinky. It is common in dogs that live in a warm, humid environment. It is caused by overgrowth of Malassezia which is a normal inhabitant of the dog’s and cat’s skin.

Allergens to flea bites, food and prolonged use of antibiotics are the trigger factors for a yeast infection. Symptoms of a yeast infection in dogs include:

  • Change in color and texture of skin characterized by black spots
  • Excessively oily and greasy skin
  • Scaly and flaky skin that is crusting
  • Dog shaking head to relieve discomfort
  • Constant scratching and rubbing against objects
  • Swelling redness and warmth of the skin
  • Hair loss and skin inflammation
  • Drooling, oral discomfort and problems eating

Treatment of the underlying issue is the best in controlling yeast infection. Antifungal prescriptions may also be given to your dog. Bathing and cleaning with a disinfecting solution and with the right shampoo can also help.

  1. Natural Ageing

Older dogs tend to develop back patches on areas such as ears and belly. This is due to natural aging that also affect the appearance of skin color. Black spots on senior dogs that does not associate other symptoms such as hair loss, flaking scaly skin or odor should be nothing to worry about.

Taking good care of senior dogs, applying some ointments and providing nutritional diet can help in maintaining a good looking skin.

  1. Sun exposure

Melanin is produced when the skin is exposed to sunlight for long. It is a pigment substance that protects against UV radiations from the sun. During summer or during hot weather seasons, your pooch may get black patches that are unfriendly to look at.

Keeping your dog indoors during such times is important in preventing dark pigmentation. Too much exposure to sun can also cause sun burn in dogs that can result to skin peeling or scaling.

  1. Hemorrhage

This is bleeding under the skin caused by raptured or bruised blood capillaries. Black spots on dog’s skin or belly can be caused by trapped blood. Hemorrhage can be caused by open wounds or hemorrhoids a type of lump under dog skin. This condition can be painful and therefore need to be examined by the vet.

  1. Ticks

These are external parasites that feed on the host blood. They are different sizes and color such as black, grey or brown. Ticks can also be small and hard to notice them when they burrow in the fur. They are good in biting and sucking blood hence leaving pain and black spots.

To control ticks, you should consult with a vet on the best pesticide to use on your pooch. Some chemicals might be too strong to overwhelm your puppies.

  1. Hypothyroidism

Underactive thyroid can cause symptoms such as black spots, hair loss on back and tail. Severe symptoms include muscle loss and infections in the ears and around the toes. This condition can be treated by thyroid daily supplements or a dose prescribed by a veterinarian.

How to Treat Black Spots on Dog’s Skin

dark patches on dog's skin
dark patches on dog’s skin

Most dark spots on your pet’s skin are best treated depending on the cause. You should schedule an appointment with a vet to diagnose the causes and offer a treatment which may involve the following:

  1. Injections and oral medications
  2. Topical medications and antihistamines.
  3. Best antifungal shampoo with the right ingredients
  4. Supplements and vitamin injections
  5. Change of diet to avoid allergens
  6. Balanced diet for stronger immune system.

Home Remedies

Some home remedies work but should be applied under the consultation of a vet. They include:

  • Vitamin E: Supplements and food high rich in vitamin E works magic in keeping your pet’s skin healthy and shiny.
  • Low fat Yogurt: Feeding your dog on low fat yogurt helps in regulating bacterial growth and hence a way of controlling yeast infection.
  • Chamomile tea: Chilled tea in a refrigerator fights most skin bacterial and yeast infection. Apply directly on the black spots that are itchy.
  • Coconut oil: This is a very robust ingredient in fighting most skin problems. Applying coconut oil on your dog’s skin can prevent cases of dry skin, itching and inflammation.
  • Epsom salt soak: It is effective in reducing inflamed itchy skin caused by an irritation


Black spots on dog’s skin should be diagnosed and treated especially when they associate other symptoms. You should consult a vet for examination and advice on what to do.

Additional Resources:

My Dog Has Dark Skin Patches — What Is It? Petfinder.com

What Causes the Black Spots on Dog Skin? perromart.com.sg

How can I treat black spots on the skin of my dog? Quora.com

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