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Green or Yellow Discharge from Dog’s Penis: Our Vet Explains

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This article was updated on August 26th, 2023

Does your male dog have a green or yellow discharge from their penis? This can be normal but may also indicate that there is something more serious going on. At my veterinary practice, I see many male dogs each day with a mild discharge from their penis. While this is a very normal sign to see, this can also indicate that there is something more serious going on with your dog that warrants investigating. 

male dog peeing against a tree at the park

Should I worry if I see a green or yellow discharge from my dog’s penis? 

This is a commonly seen thing in many male dogs. As long as your dog is healthy and happy, many times, this is not anything to worry about. Dogs who have issues urinating or seem painful when they are urinated with this discharge, this is when I start to worry. 

When is a discharge normal?

If your dog is having a yellow discharge from their penis, this can be perfectly normal. Many times your dog will also be acting normal and not seem bothered by this discharge at all. You do need to monitor for any other signs of infection around or near his penis. You will also want to monitor his penis and urination to make sure he doesn’t seem to be in pain.

Is the green/yellow discharge in the picture below a cause for concern?

Pictured below is a mild amount of discharge and usually is about the normal amount that you would often find on your male dog’s penis. If you see more discharge than this, it may be best to see your veterinarian.

close up of a green or yellow discharge on a dog's penis

Top causes of a green or yellow discharge from a dog’s penis

There are a few reasons that you may see green or yellow discharge from your dog’s penis.

  • It could be a normal discharge: Smegma is the medical term for this type of discharge, and it is normal to see around your dog’s penis. You can use a baby wipe to gently clean this discharge to lessen the severity of the discharge. 
  • Urinary Tract Infection: If your dog has a urinary tract infection you may see some discharge around their penis. This could even be coming from their urinary tract. Most dogs with a urinary tract infection will also have issues urinating. If you notice that your dog is also very painful when they are peeing, it would be best for them to see the vet and have a urinary sample checked for an infection.
  • Prepuce infection: The prepuce is the skin that covers your dog’s penis. This area can get infected from a cut or scrape. You may see a yellow or green discharge from the infection.

All of these causes can easily be treated and have a good prognosis if treated correctly by a veterinarian.

Veterinarian’s Tip: Dogs can also suffer from sexually transmitted infections. Intact male breeding dogs can contract brucellosis, which is highly contagious and can spread to people and cause permanent infertility.

Is there anything I can try at home first before seeing the vet?

I advise patients at my clinic to try to keep this area clean. You can use a baby wipe and clean this area twice a day. This can greatly reduce the amount of discharge that you are seeing. If the green and yellow discharge is increasing in amount or changing colors, this would be an indication for you to see your vet.

If a dog has a discharge from the penis, it is ok to wait and see if it happens again if your dog is acting normal, eating and drinking, and does not seem painful when urinating. At home, you can clean this discharge and wash this area daily to help keep the discharge away. 

If your dog does not feel well or seems painful when urinating, it would be best to see your veterinarian right away. Waiting too long before seeing the vet can cause your dog to have a very serious bacterial infection in his bladder and even into his kidneys. 

FAQ: What are the signs of infected dog smegma?

Dog smegma is a naturally occurring substance in the genital area. It is usually not a cause for concern. However, if the quantity of smegma becomes excessive or if it is accompanied by other signs of illness in your dog, it may indicate an infection. Here are some potential symptoms of an infection:

  1. Excessive discharge (noticeably increased amount of smegma discharge, which can appear thick, sticky, and discolored).
  2. Foul odor (unusually unpleasant odor accompanying the discharge)
  3. Redness and swelling: The genital area may become inflamed, red, and swollen due to the infection.
  4. Itching and discomfort: Infected dogs may experience itchiness or discomfort in their genital region. They may lick, scratch, or bite at the area excessively.
  5. Urinary issues: In some cases, a smegma infection can lead to urinary symptoms such as difficulty urinating, frequent urination, or blood in the urine.

Dogs with smegma infections may exhibit changes in behavior, such as restlessness, irritability, or reluctance to be touched in the affected area.

When a penis discharge is a sign that you need to see your veterinarian.

There are a few signs that you need to look for that would indicate that you need to see your vet, such as:

  • Pain or discomfort when urinating
  • Excessive licking
  • Any sign of feeling unwell
  • Bloody discharge
  • Not eating or drinking as much as usual
  • Discharge is getting worse

It is best to never wait to see your vet if you notice any of the signs above.

What will happen at the vet

Your veterinarian will examine your dog’s penis and even take a urine sample to see if there is an infection. They may also recommend bloodwork and take x-rays to check for any other causes of the yellow to green discharge from your dog’s penis. This can cost anywhere from $50-100 for an exam to $300 to $500+ for bloodwork, x-rays, and antibiotics. 

Disclaimer: This content is not a substitute for veterinary care. Always consult with your vet for health decisions. Learn more.

Veterinarian Tip: Having pet health insurance for your dog can help take the sting out of vet bills. Insurance works best when purchased when the pet is young and healthy.

How to prepare for your vet visit

It is best to have a few pictures of the discharge, especially if you clean the penis each day. If you remove all the discharge that is present before going to the vet they will not know what it looks like. Having pictures on different days can help them see the severity and any change in color. If you can catch a urine sample before going to the vet it can help them to determine if your dog has a urinary tract infection causing the discharge.

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  • Dr Sara Ochoa, Veterinarian

    Dr. Ochoa earned her Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine (DVM) from St. George University in 2015, and completed her program with excellent scores. She has more than 7 years of experience practicing as a veterinarian for Whitehouse Veterinary Hospital in Whitehouse, TX.

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