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I have a 2 and a half year old flat coated retriever boy, who has started to develop black spots on his tongue slowly over the last six months or so. He has a larger one about the size of a pound coin far back, and two smaller ones about pea-sized near the tip, and they are completely flat on his tongue.

I know that black-spot birthmarks on the tongue are quite common in retrievers and are usually just extra pigment, and my dog's spots look identical to images of these birthmarks I have seen online. However my dog's spots have not been here since birth, can these birthmarks appear this late, or is this something I should get checked out by a vet?

He hasn't changed any behaviour with his tongue or general life at all, is showing no signs of pain in the slightest.

Many thanks for any help you can give me.

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I can't seem to find a good reference for you right this minute but I can speak from experience. I've had dogs pigment continue to change up to six years old. It happens more dramatically and faster when they are young. If it really is a pigment change from pink to black and there isn't any raised area there is nothing to worry about.

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