The dog’s tongue is one of the most important parts of its body. Besides lapping up food and water, or kissing its owner, the tongue serves as an essential heat regulator. When dogs exercise, their tongues becomes larger and due to increased blood flow usually hang out of the mouth. Thus, when a dog pants, it’s actually cooling the dog’s entire body. The dog’s quick shallow breaths cause moisture on the tongue to evaporate thus cooling the tongue that in turn cools the blood flow through the tongue and the respiratory system. Providing your dog with cool air on hot or humid days is very important for temperature regulation. This is why it is so dangerous to leave a dog in an unventilated heated car. The warm air keeps the tongue from doing its job. Tongue injuries are uncommon, but if one occurs while the dog is warm and panting, the tongue may bleed excessively due to increased blood flow. If this occurs it is very important to cool the dog down. If the dog exhibits symptoms of distress, it may be necessary to seek veterinary attention. Another common tongue injury may occur with dogs that chew on wood. This may lead to getting a splinter. Although, it may be painful a vet can help you remove it. Dog tongues are really amazing. They are much more rich and complex than most people realize. Keep in mind that large dogs with large tongues have a need for different bowls and dishes. Obviously large dogs need larger bowls. If you pay attention to your dog’s tongue, you will learn a lot. You’ll also be able to better understand the health of you good friend.