Thermal Panting in Dogs: The Lateral Nasal Gland, a Source of Water for Evaporative Cooling

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Science  01 Sep 1972:
Vol. 177, Issue 4051, pp. 804-805
DOI: 10.1126/science.177.4051.804


Two lateral nasal glands appear to provide a large part of the water for evaporative cooling in the panting dog; their function is analogous to that of sweat glands in man. Each gland drains through a single duct which opens about 2 centimeters inside the opening of the nostril. This location may be essential to avoid desiccation of the nasal mucosa during thermal panting. The rate of secretion from one gland increased from 0 to an average of 9.6 g (gland · hour)-1 as air temperature was increased from 10° to 50°C. Evaporation of the fluid from the paired glands could account for between 19 and 36 percent of the increase in respiratory evaporation associated with thermal panting. The fluid secreted by the gland was hypoosmotic to plasma.