#2 – Performing A Capillary Refill Test
Lift the dog’s lip and check the color of their gums above their canine tooth. The gums should be pink. When you press on them, they should turn white for a moment and then go back to pink. This is known as a capillary refill test. If they are blue in color, your dog is lacking oxygen. If your doggie looks pale or white this indicates either an internal or external loss of blood for the dog.
Gray or purple gums and a slowly refilling capillary means the dog may be in shock. A bright red color could mean a systemic infection or a possible exposure to a toxin. One thing that can make assessment harder is that certain breeds of dogs have black colored gums. For these dogs, you must carefully pull down on their lower eyelid so you can check the pink tissue inside.