Like you, your pooch can get moles and freckles on her skin from aging or from sun exposure. You may notice spots on your pup's ear tips, on her tummy or around the nose, as those areas often have little hair and are prone to sunburn. A dog's fur coat provides a natural barrier to protect against UV rays, but light-colored dogs and dogs with little or thinning fur are at risk for burning.
While freckles from the sun or from aging can be harmless, check with your vet if you notice a sudden change in the color or appearance of your dog's skin, or moles that seem to be itchy or are bleeding or are dark, with irregular shapes. Dogs can develop melanoma; some at risk for this skin cancer are those with pale coloring or thinning hair, and several breeds -- setters, retrievers, spaniels and terriers among them.
- VetStreet: 5 Must-Know Facts About Skin Cancer and Pets
- Morris Animal Foundation: Melanoma
- Cesar's Way: Ask the Vet: Change in Dog Skin Pigmentation
- Pet MD: Sunscreen Summer Dreaming Is Now a Reality for Our Pets
- Aredaile Health Foundation: Cancer in Canines
- American Kennel Club: Secretary's Page: February 2009
- Ciaran Griffin/Stockbyte/Getty Images