Why do dogs stink and cats don’t? Find out now!

Dogs and cats are very different species, and one of them is odor.


Dogs and cats are very different species. Despite this, they are still compared. Actually, cats do not have a strong odor on their skin and hair, unless they have a skin disease.

Even with skin diseases, a cat’s smell is nothing like a dog’s, which is much stronger. But those who think that the problem is only a lack of hygiene are mistaken. Learn about some diseases that can leave the dog with an unpleasant odor.


But also about the quality of food, hygiene products that the pet uses, a day after the pet is bathed in certain ways can favor the existing odors that frustrate the owner.

Periodontal disease


Periodontal disease occurs in the gums and teeth of dogs and cats. However, it happens earlier in dogs. The problem arises from the accumulation of dirt on the teeth, mainly from lack of daily brushing.

The mouth has a very strong and bad smell. When the animals lick themselves until they are very clean, the odor spreads all over the body. The treatment is performed by cleaning the teeth with a special device after the animal has been put under general anesthesia.

After the end of the periodontal treatment, this cleaning should be maintained with daily brushing of the teeth.


Mycoses are infections caused by fungi. The species that most makes the dog smell bad is Malassezia pachydermatis. This fungus darkens the skin, making it more grayish and thick, like that of an elephant.

This causes hair loss. At first, however, there is no itching. With this disease, the dog emits a rather unpleasant sour smell. Treatment is time consuming and must be done with oral and topical medications. As the problem is more common in dogs, does this explain why dogs stink and cats don’t?

Labial fold pyodermitis

Labial fold occurs in dogs of hairy breeds such as the Cocker Spaniel and the Pug. It is a fold of skin in the corner of the lower lip that accumulates food, water, natural skin secretions and consequent fungal and bacterial infections.

All this happens in a place with little ventilation. Thus, the problem causes a terrible stench that spreads throughout the body when the animal cleans itself with its tongue. This is a difference between cat and dog that affects the smell of a dog’s coat.


With this disease, the dog has problems with the production of fat (sebum) in the skin. This gives it a very strong and characteristic smell. The problem can be a consequence of systemic diseases, and the treatment must be done with medications and with therapeutic shampoos.


Another disease that explains why dogs stink. In the canine species, this problem is very common. However, the disease is considered rare in cats. Hypothyroidism is an insufficiency of the thyroid gland.

It is responsible for several processes in the body. Therefore, when the function is insufficient, the change causes obesity, fatigue, lethargy, drowsiness, hair loss, and recurring skin diseases that lead to bad odor.

Treating hypothyroidism is relatively simple and consists of replacing the hormones that the thyroid gland is no longer producing. At first, until the dose is adjusted correctly, the visits to the vet are every 14 days. After that, they occur every six months.

It takes 4 to 6 weeks for the hormone replacement to start working. The dog with hypothyroidism will need to take medication for the rest of its life. If you stop taking the medicine, the disease can get out of control and cause the symptoms again.

These were just a few examples to help explain why dogs stink and cats don’t. To find out exactly what is causing your dog’s stink, take your dog to your veterinarian for a consultation and check-up.

Pet hygiene

Dog hygiene is much more complex than that of cats. It is all a matter of knowing the type of coat, the right frequency of bathing and the various possible hairstyles. Therefore, always count on the help of professionals from specialized stores.

Cat hygiene is easier. However, this does not mean that the cat does not need all this care. You see, bathing is not as important for kittens as it is for dogs. However, it is important to take care of the coat of long-haired pets.

Lanna K.

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