Bleeding Tongue

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Bleeding Tongue

Bleeding tongue: A dog’s tongue is important for many things including eating, cleaning themselves, lapping up water, bonding with the pack and showing submission.  Luckily, there aren’t many issues or illnesses that affect dogs’ tongues, however they are susceptible to injury perhaps during general investigation with their mouths by biting, chewing or picking up something which may be sharp or have rough edges.   Injuries could also arise in many other innocent ways including chewing a bone, rough play or maybe even simply trapping their tongue between the teeth (hey, Im sure we’ve done that ourselves!)

Although small cuts or abrasions on other body parts may not be deemed all that much of a concern, tongue injuries can lead to significant problems. When a dog’s tongue is cut, it bleeds excessively and this bleeding can be difficult to stop.

When to See a Vet

See your vet immediately if the cut appears deep or the bleeding is difficult or impossible to stop.

An ice cube held directly on the wound will constrict the blood vessels, and help stop bleeding.

Applying direct pressure while holding the tongue with a gauze pad will work, assuming you can hold the tongue of course!

Everyday all-purpose flour can be used for small cuts to stop the bleeding.  Simply pack the wound with the flour and then hold a gauze pad tightly against the wound. The flour should help the blood to clot.

If it’s a small nick, keep an eye on it for a day or two to make sure it isnt getting infected.  If you can’t get the bleeding to stop, or if it stops and starts to bleed again, then don’t delay in calling your vet as your dog may need a stitch or two.  If you are in any doubt, then call your vet.


  1. Reply

    Hi, I saw this post after my 2 year old golden retriever cut his tongue today (while out for a walk, not sure how). The cut is only about 1/4 inch but was bleeding a lot – when I saw your recommendation about ice, it was impossible to hold cubes on his tongue but he was happy to suck/chew the cubes. 20 minutes later, the bleeding has all but stopped – thanks for the tip!

    • Reply

      lol … yes, holding icecubes with a goldie is somewhat challenging! … Im very pleased the tip helped though Gerry and I hope he’s all back to normal now xx

  2. Reply

    Many thanks for tip….our greyhound bit her tongue. She would not suck on an ice cube, but I put a bit of food on the palm of my hand, with an ice cube held over the top of it. Our greyhound licked the cube to get to the food. 1o minutes of this, every now and then letting her get to the food then replacing it and repeating the process, and the bleeding has greatly stopped. Many thanks

    • Reply

      Well done you! … sometimes we need to “think outside the box” a bit and you certainly did that and it sounds like it worked a treat too 😉

  3. Reply

    Hey i tried to give my dog an ice cube since she has a cut in her mouth but it seems to be on the roof of it and she won’t take the ice cube. Have you any other suggestions?

    • Reply

      Flour will stick and clot a bleed and is safe in the mouth if the ice cubes aren’t working. Getting the flour on the bleed, however, is a little more tricky! Good luck

  4. Reply

    Our blue heeler was poisoned and after vet care bit her tongue thanks so much .

    • Reply

      Really pleased we were able to give you a bit of help and confidence. Hope she is on the mend xx

  5. Reply

    I was grooming my dog today and cut his tongue. I cried n cried n he only yelped! I wasn’t going to just give him an ice cube and monitor despite the bleeding had stopped. I took him straight to the vet. It was a very small cuy but a cut none the less. They will be suturing my lil guy as the vet stated it’s bettet for the healing process as dogs do a lot with their tongue and he even though the bleeding as stopped, it can potentially get infected without suturing. So my dogs at the vet due to my stupidity and im online trying to find ways to feed this guy onece he’s discharged from the hospital. Balling my eyes out!!!

    • Reply

      oh you mustn’t blame yourself – these things just happen and nobody does it on purpose. The good news is that tongues are just about the fastest part of a dog to heal so once he is discharged from hospital, he should pretty much be very soon ready as normal. xx

  6. Reply

    A couple of days ago my 11 month old puppy cut herself with a stick, we thought it was just on the side of her mouth but only just noticed that it’s under her tongue as well. We couldn’t figure out why she wont lap up water or give kisses anymore. The cut doesn’t seem to be bleeding but it is concerning…how long does a wound like this take to heal? I’m very concerned and any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

    • Reply

      Tongues and mouths heal very quickly as a rule because obviously if the dog can’t eat, he wont survive. I would honestly suggest having the dog seen by a professional because although it may well just look like a cut to you, there is always the possibility of a foreign body lodged in the wound, say a splinter of bit of wood or debris still in it. This would prevent it from healing up quickly and likely cause infection too. If she were mine, I would be straight to the vet on Monday

      Good luck with her

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