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LET YOUR DOG SNIFF

Dogs' noses function quite differently than our own. When we inhale, we smell and breathe through the same airways within our nose. When dogs inhale, a fold of tissue just inside their nostril helps to separate these two functions.

When we exhale through our nose, we send the spent air out the way it came in, forcing out any incoming odors. When dogs exhale, the spent air exits through the slits in the sides of their noses. The manner in which the exhaled air swirls out actually helps usher new odors into the dog's nose. More importantly, it allows dogs to sniff more or less continuously. When a dog flares its nostrils to sniff, the shape of the nostril openings change, and this allowing redirection of air into the upper part of the snout so that air can move in and out at the same time, creating a continuous circulation of air.

When the dog is sniffing a surface, the airflow from exhalation actually draws the odor from the object being scented towards the nose.

The canine nose works best when it is damp. The wet outer nose and mucus-covered nasal canal efficiently capture scent particles. Moisture is so important to the canine sense of smell, that dogs will lick their noses when they become dry.

Let your dog explore the world through their nose as often as possible.
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