Dogs sure love their beauty sleep and napping throughout the day. However, they don’t always do it in the most peaceful manner. Many dogs snore when they sleep, and the reasons for this can be quite diverse, ranging from something as simple as allergies to more grave health concerns. Moreover, some dogs, due to their physical make-up, are naturally more inclined to snore than others. If your furry friend has always snored once in a while, it’s usually nothing to lose sleep over. However, if your dog has recently started snoring, it could be a red flag for a serious health issue.
Dog snoring can be a bit of a nuisance, especially at night when you’re trying to get some shut-eye next to your beloved pet. However, it’s something that you should discuss with your vet, particularly if your dog rarely snores and has recently started snoring consistently every time they sleep. Since snoring is quite a common occurrence, there are many different causes for it, some of which are out of our control. So, if you’re left wondering, “why does my dog snore?” you’ve landed in the right place. This article will delve into the common reasons why your dog snores and when it’s time to start worrying.
What Is Snoring?
Snoring is a phenomenon we’re all pretty familiar with; it’s that abrasive sound that comes about when air passes through relaxed muscles in the throat, leading to vibrations as we breathe. The relaxation of these muscles narrows the airway, which can produce a loud snore. And here’s the thing: the more narrow the airway, the louder the snore tends to be.
Is It Normal For Dogs To Snore?
For the most part, a dog snoring is just a regular occurrence. However, there are times when it can be a warning sign of a more severe medical condition.
The Reasons Behind Dogs Snoring
There’s a multitude of reasons as to why dogs snore. The most common one is due to the relaxation of the airways, which can occur due to various factors. Some dogs are naturally more prone to snoring than others, but if your dog starts snoring suddenly, it could be an indicator of something more serious lurking beneath.
8 Common Reasons Why Dogs are Snoring
Upper Respiratory Infection: It’s not uncommon to notice an increase in snoring when you’ve got a cold or an upper respiratory infection. Sinus congestion clogs up your airways, making it harder for air to circulate freely through your nose. Your dog can experience the same issue. If they catch a cold or fall sick, they may develop congestion, leading to snoring.
Obesity: When your dog gains weight, it doesn’t just pile on around their belly. Excess weight can also lead to the formation of additional tissues in your pet’s neck or throat region. These tissues can obstruct airflow, increasing the likelihood of your dog snoring.
Allergies: If your pet has allergies, it could be the culprit behind their snoring. Allergens can cause inflammation in the nasal passages, leading to swelling that restricts airflow.
Sleep Position: Have you ever observed that your dog only snores when sleeping on its back? This sleeping posture may result in the tongue falling back against the throat, partially blocking the airway.
Abscessed Tooth: The bacterial infection causing a tooth abscess could be behind the inflammation and swelling in nearby tissues.
Hypothyroidism: Snoring could be an indicator that your dog isn’t producing enough thyroid hormone. Other symptoms of hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) can include a dull coat, flaky skin, lethargy, intolerance to cold, reduced appetite, weight gain, shedding, and skin and ear infections.
Breed Characteristics: Dogs with short noses, such as boxers, pugs, Boston terriers, English bulldogs, and Shih-Tzus are more prone to snoring, according to the College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Obstructions: Anything that hinders the smooth flow of air, be it a growth somewhere in your pet’s airway or an object stuck in its nose, can trigger snoring.
When Should I Start Worrying About My Dog Snoring?
While snoring is a pretty common thing in dogs and doesn’t always imply a serious medical condition, if your dog has only recently started snoring in their sleep, and their sleeping position hasn’t changed, nor has their weight, it could be a sign of a serious underlying health concern. If your dog’s snoring has you worried, you can bring it up with your vet during your pet’s next visit to see if they have any recommendations. Otherwise, you can just let your dog snore to their heart’s content and enjoy their sleep.
However, as snoring could be a sign of something more serious, you should contact your vet if your dog suddenly starts snoring and displays other symptoms of illness like lethargy or lack of appetite.
If your dog is having trouble breathing, including symptoms like wheezing or gasping for air, take them to the nearest emergency clinic for examination and treatment, as it could suggest a blockage in their airways.
Why Is My Dog Snoring?
Is it normal for dogs to snore as they age? Senior dogs can sometimes experience partial or complete laryngeal paralysis, which impacts their ability to breathe while sleeping. However, it’s completely normal for dogs to snore, regardless of their age, as long as your vet has given them a clean bill of health.
What are the signs of respiratory distress in a dog?
While snoring might indicate an underlying health issue, it often doesn’t cause your dog any distress. Instead, signs of respiratory distress include wheezing, difficulty breathing, coughing, congestion, and fainting. If your dog shows any of these signs, get them to a vet immediately for examination and treatment.
Can I give my dog Benadryl?
Benadryl can be a safe and effective treatment for allergies in dogs. However, it’s important to consult with a vet before attempting to treat your dog on your own. Giving your dog too much Benadryl can be dangerous. Additionally, this antihistamine can lead to drug interactions in dogs that are on medication.
How To Help a snoring dog?
Sometimes, getting your dog to stop snoring is as easy as nudging them to roll over or helping them lose some weight. If your dog is on the heavier side, your vet can help you come up with a weight loss plan to help your pet safely shed the extra pounds. If your dog has a cold or an upper respiratory infection, the snoring should stop once they start feeling better.
If your dog’s snoring started out of the blue and there’s no clear reason, your vet can help you figure out what’s going on. For example, if your dog has a tooth abscess, taking out the bad tooth and treating the infection with antibiotics should stop the snoring. If your dog has an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism), your vet may prescribe medication that can improve your pet’s health and reduce the snoring.
If your dog’s snoring is due to allergies, a few changes to your pet’s surroundings can make a big difference. Things like wiping your dog down with a damp cloth after they’ve been outside, cleaning your floors and bedding regularly, using air conditioners and air filters to get rid of allergens, and keeping a humidifier on to keep your pet’s nasal passages moist can all help. Your vet might also suggest using medicated shampoos or giving your dog allergy medication.
If your dog has a short nose, don’t worry if they snore. But, if you have a breed like this, it’s important to make sure your pet maintains a healthy weight and monitor their breathing if they get a cold or upper respiratory illness. If the snoring is a symptom of a serious issue, your vet might recommend surgery to make it easier for your dog to breathe.
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