Do dogs also get skin tags? Does something as benign as a skin tag be harmful to your dog? Do you need to seek a veterinarian’s help? You are probably here because you wonder why your dogs show these skin tags, but you don’t need to worry about it. We are here to help you!

What are Skin Tags?

skin tags on dogs

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In medical terms, they are called acrochordons. Skin tags are benign outgrowths that can appear anywhere on your dog. They appear as bump-like formulations. They are not contagious, but most dog owners observe them in their dogs. Skin tags are seen on older dogs. They may look ugly on your dog, but they don’t cause pain when they are touched.

Skin tags are made up of blood vessels and collagen and are covered in the skin.

Skin Tags Appearance

Humans also get skin tags, and it is the same condition in canines. There are two types of skin tags

  • Fibro adnexal Hamartomas 
  • Follicular Hamartomas

The first ones are small, pale growths on the skin. They are very small and pin-like. In some cases, they can grow larger.

The second type is connected to skin with a stalk-like thing. If the growth is large or bulky, then these stalks appear little in comparison to them.

Sometimes skin tags develop under the surface of the skin. These are unnoticeable, but if they are larger, they can be felt from touching at that place.

Where do Skin Tags grow?

skin tags on dogs

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Skin tags grow usually grow on the areas of friction

  • Armpit
  • Chest
  • Abdomen
  • Mammary glands

Causes of Skin Tags

The exact cause of skin tags is unknown, but most likely, they develop due to friction or areas that encounter continuous pressure. But this theory isn’t applicable in all cases.

Skin tags are made up of fibrous tissues that contain proteins. This protein helps in connectivity and support in blood and internal organs. When this protein becomes overactive, then a skin tag is formed. Thus skin tag is an extra and unnecessary growth of tissue.

Don’t confuse Skin Tags with these!

Skin tags are often confused with warts, nipples, or ticks, but they are entirely different

  • Warts: they are also benign outgrowths, but they are contagious. They usually grow on lips, mouth, eyes, or abdomen. Again, a single dog can spread it to others, but humans don’t get infected by it.
  • Ticks: tick is like a corn grain. It can be pulled off easily. If you are not sure if it’s a tag or a tick, don’t pull it because pulling off a skin tag will cause pain to the pet.
  • Nipples: dogs have 8-10 nipples on either side of the abdomen, so don’t confuse them with skin tags.

What to do when your dog has a Skin Tag?

First of all, stop panicking! Skin tags are not harmful and something to be worried a lot about.

You can’t tell just by looking that the bump or lump grown is harmless or cancerous, so visit the specialist.

Take your dog to the vet and ask them for help. They will probably ask you to relax and keep a check on the growth of these tags, look for the irritation signs, and change in color or size of tags. Their color can also vary, just like dogs appear in different colors, so it’s nothing serious.

Don’t try to pull off a skin tag at home. It can cause pain and irritation for the pet, and there’s also the risk of bleeding. 

Skin tag removal is optional. However, if your veterinarian suggests it, then you should go for it.

Can Skin Tags be a problem?

Because these are benign growths, skin tags are not generally of great concern beyond the cosmetic appearance. However, in some cases, they may get caught on objects or when grooming and become traumatized. In these cases, surgical removal may be advisable.

Changing Skin Tags

You should pay concern if you observe the following changes in the skin tag

  • The skin tag begins to bleed or develops a discharge 
  • Any changes in size or color 
  • Additional skin tags forming in the same location 
  • The dog becomes more bothered or appears to be in pain
  • Excessive licking, itching, or ascribing at the area

Removal of Skin Tags

skin tags on dogs

Credit: petmd, Pinterest

Most skin tags do not need removal at all. They are only superficial and do not call for any particular treatment. However, if they are in a troublesome area or are larger than normal, and your pets scratch, lick or even bite at them if they can reach them, then it’s serious. These actions can lead to redness, rawness, and even infection at the site. In this case, your vet might suggest getting them removed.

Skin tags are removed through a biopsy, frozen off with cryosurgery, removed with electrosurgery, or excised, which means they are cut off.

These procedures vary from dog to dog and the type of skin tag. None of this is painful, take care of your dog, and they will be fine like before.

What is the cost of Skin Rag removal?

Skin tags on dogs are easily removed. There is no specific cost provided for the surgical treatment. The cost depends on your residential area, pet type, and skin tag type.

Can you remove the Skin Tag at home?

Most dog owners, without knowing what skin tags are, try different home remedies to cure it. Unfortunately, it is a waste of time, and a risk of complications is also there. 

You need a veterinarian’s help to get your dog treated in a sterile environment and pain management.  


Skin tags on dogs are almost always harmless. They usually only pose a threat if they are in a problematic location or become irritated and infected.

So, if you have any concerns regarding your dog’s health or abnormal growth, waste no time and visit the vet.

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