Nasal depigmentation, also called Dudley nose, is a syndrome of unknown cause that may be a form of vitiligo. A nose that is solid black at birth gradually fades to a chocolate brown, or in the case of complete depigmentation, to pinkish white. Some dogs experience a remission in which the nose spontaneously becomes darker. Depigmentation primarily affects the skin of the nose where hair is absent. It tends to occur in Afghan Hounds, Samoyeds, White German Shepherd Dogs, Doberman Pinschers, Irish Setters, Pointers, and Poodles.
Snow nose is a separate but common condition in which dark pigment on the nose fades during the winter months and darkens again in spring and summer. Complete depigmentation does not occur. Snow nose is seen in Siberian Huskies, Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers, Bernese Mountain Dogs, and other dog breeds.
Treatment: Lack of pigment on the nose is primarily a cosmetic problem and is considered to be a conformation fault in the show ring. A number of home remedies have been advocated, but their success is questionable. Sunscreen, as described for nasal solar dermatitis, helps prevent ultraviolet injury to dogs who lack pigment.