Cannot sleep? Apparently, it is not only humans who keep others awake all night due to loud snoring. Our little pups and dogs do it as well. Yes, you read that right. Just like us humans, our puppy snores too. But, is snoring normal in a puppy?
You may find dog snoring either adorable or annoying at first. However, if this continues for quite some time, you will start to worry.
At a certain point, you find yourself asking, “Is it normal for a puppy to snore, or could it already be one of those serious pet health issues?”
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Is it Normal for a Puppy to Snore?
Be extra cautious when it comes to anything out of the ordinary happening to your little pup. If you have noticed that suddenly your young dog snores, it is best to be aware of a couple of things in order to better understand this phenomenon.
In this blog post, we will inform you of the rationale why dogs snore and its common causes. We will also take you on a tour of the available remedies for your dog, which you may resort to, and when to seek medical intervention from your vet.
Why would a Dog suddenly start Snoring?
Why does my dog snore? And are there ways on how to stop my dog from snoring?
There are actually several possible reasons why dogs snore.
But first, it is good to know that the interior of a healthy dog’s throat and airway is specifically designed to keep him oxygenated and ventilated. Therefore, a dog snoring signals that something is obstructing his respiratory tract and causes airway constriction.
As the air passes through the nose, nasal and oral cavities, it faces resistance, which triggers the tissues to vibrate, creating that distinctive snoring sound. Although it may often seem harmless and naturally fixable, you should always be keen to check for any abnormalities when your dogs snore.
Common Causes of Puppy Snoring
If your puppy recently seems a bit off and starts snoring, this might be his body’s way of telling you that something is wrong.
Here are a few contributing factors or reasons as to why your dog might be keeping you up all night.
The way your dog lays down result in a dog snore. The way your puppy sleeps is restricting his airways and causes your dog to snore.
Lying on his back as opposed to his side might cause his tongue to drop back towards the throat. Therefore, impeding his breath from flowing smoothly inside.
Many dog breeds generally have wide and clear nasal openings. Unfortunately, these can be prone to temporary blockage.
Due to their inquisitive nature, puppies tend to sniff and dive with their noses into almost anything. Debris can then lodge in your pup’s nasal passages, which may inhibit proper breathing and may be one of the reasons why your dog is snoring.
Allergies and Irritants
If your dog has allergies to particular foods or is exposed to environmental irritants, he can develop health issues like nasal congestion. It is hard to breathe because of mucus buildup and postnasal drip, which negatively impact snoring.
The swelling of the tissues in the mouth and throat is often accompanied by itchiness, runny eyes or nose, sneezing, constant licking, swollen paws, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Smoke poses a greater risk for allergies and could cause more serious health issues like bronchitis, asthma, and other respiratory damage.
Second-hand cigarette smoke is definitely irritating to your puppy’s lungs and may be a catalyst for dog snoring. Just like us, our dog has a sensitive throat.
Sometimes, a dog’s reverse sneeze may also come out as a snore. Of course, the dog’s sneeze is likewise caused by allergies or other irritants.
If you have a dog belonging to these breeds, you should be particularly aware of dog snoring and what it can mean.
Brachycephalic breeds are short-headed dogs with relatively flat or squat faces and short muzzles or snouts with a physiological predisposition to breathing troubles and snoring. A pug is an example of a dog breed which are brachycephalic.
Many brachycephalic breeds suffer from the airway and nasal stenosis, a congenital condition that can obstruct nasal passages and restrict breathing. This results in lower oxygen levels, lethargy, unwillingness to exercise, and distress.
The intake of some medications may also be one of the reasons why your dog is snoring. Some medicines have side effects, including restricted airways.
For example, pain relievers may cause the throat to relax more than usual, triggering a snoring episode among dogs.
Obesity in most dog breeds also results in snoring in dogs. Overweight dogs develop extra tissues and excess fats, not just in their outer body but also in the throat.
These conditions lead to the obstruction of the airways and constriction of the respiratory tract. It likewise causes breath to be short, leading to a snoring dog.
If you cannot feel your puppy’s spine and ribs without pressing down, nor see a defined waist when looking down at her, it is a sign that he is overweight or obese. Being overweight can be extremely dangerous, especially if the trachea ends up collapsing.
Suffering from dental problems can also cause your dogs to snore.
Your dogs may have a tooth abscess or other growth within the oral cavity or sinuses, which would stop or clog the airways and cause snoring. Tooth problems can be excruciatingly painful as these abnormalities can easily become infected and require more serious intervention.
Puppies are highly susceptible to get infections. These infections can cause nasal congestion and other breathing problems that lead to snoring.
Viral, bacterial, fungal, and parasitic infections, particularly in the respiratory system, also lead to breathing troubles and possibly snoring. Your puppy may have a stuffy and runny nose, inflamed mucus membranes, sneezing, labored breathing, swelling, nasal discharge, and snoring.
Left untreated, an infection can spread through a puppy’s body and cause much more serious issues.
Cold and Flu
Aside from the usual snoring during sleep, snoring while awake is certainly something to check. Technically, it is not snoring but noisy, short breathing, which is not a good sign. Your pet may be suffering from a cold or flu.
Suffering from a cold or the flu causes our dog’s nose to be clogged, restricting the airflow. He needs to be thoroughly checked over by a qualified vet right away, especially if he seems unwell or his breathing is labored.
Underlying Medical Condition
If your puppy has never snored but suddenly exhibits snoring or if snoring persists unexplained, do not risk ignoring it and investigate immediately.
Dogs can have sleep apnea, characterized when breathing repeatedly stops, and starts for moments while sleeping. Snoring could also be an indicator of other medical conditions, which require the intervention of your vet.
How to Stop your Dog from Snoring
How do I stop my puppy snoring?
Despite this, there are still some proactive measures by which you can try to reduce your puppy’s snoring.
These measures may not all apply to your case, but they could probably make a difference.
Here are a few simple remedies on how to stop a dog from snoring.
Changing Your Puppy’s Sleeping Position
One of the best solutions for mild snorers is physically moving your pup, laying him down on his side instead of his back.
Most of the time, this is an efficient and inexpensive way to stop a dog from snoring.
Circular Dog Bed
Get your dog a circular dog bed. This encourages curling up, which opens their air passages and alleviates pressure on the esophagus.
Others find that a bed with raised padded edges like this one from Barkbox also works because it promotes resting the dog’s head in a raised position.
If you teach your pup how to use a small pillow to prop his head on when he sleeps, it might help him address his snoring problem.
A dog bed with built-in pillow would also do the trick of making it less likely that your dog will roll on his back.
Removing Trapped Stuff
If the snoring is caused by a temporary obstruction, it should just stop in a few days when your pup can naturally expel the foreign object. Otherwise, check with your vet to have it safely removed.
As some dogs sleep with their mouths open, a lack of natural lubricants can leave your snoring puppy with a dry mouth and throat. Snoring increases when those throat flaps touch and stick together.
An air humidifier in your puppy’s sleeping area can keep more moisture back in the air and can help you both to sleep better.
Help your Puppy Lose Weight
If your pup is overweight, you should initiate taking a few pounds off of him. In some cases, this will resolve the snoring without any further input from you. Weight loss can also prevent a range of other health problems, which is why it is worth it.
When you have a dog that belongs to a breed that is prone to gaining more weight than other breeds, it is best to start early in weight management. This Chuckit! Ball Launcher would give your pup enough exercises for weight management and prevent puppy snoring.
Check out our review article here on dog treadmills and other agility equipment that could keep them in top shape.
If you are a smoker, maybe this is the time to gradually wean off from it or smoke as far away from your puppy. It is well worth trying for a week or so, and observe the difference.
If you finally decide to accept this change permanently, you will also bring down your puppy’s risk of getting cancer from passive smoking.
If you think that allergies are what caused your dog to snore, stay away from allergens as much as possible.
Clean your puppy’s bedding often, dust and vacuum the household, do not expose him to irritants like chemicals, and take him for walks when pollen levels are low or when there is less traffic.
Wash his face and paws whenever he comes inside as he could have contacted some allergens that could trigger his allergies.
When All Else Fails
If you have tried everything, but nothing seems to work well that could put an end to your pup’s nighttime rhythmic “orchestra,” then it may be a good idea to get your little pup to undergo crate training.
This training would teach him to sleep in a different room from you or somewhere not too near your bed. Otherwise, invest in a good pair of earplugs or listen to relaxing music instead.
It is always imperative to consult with your vet first to determine the best course of action regarding any issue your little pup might have. Make sure to mention to your vet the snoring circumstances.
When your dog snores unusually, persistently, or is accompanied by other symptoms like sleep apnea or difficulty breathing, have him clinically examined as soon as possible.
Your vet is professionally trained to identify signs and confirm whether your dog is in optimum condition. He may also take a few tests to rule out any underlying medical issue and suggest medication or lifestyle changes to help relieve the problem.
In situations where a serious health concern is to blame, snoring is only a symptom. It is important to treat the problem itself to keep your dog healthy.
In a worst-case scenario, if the dog snoring is indicative of a complex sleep disorder like sleep apnea, surgery might be the only option for your dog, and your vet will be able to guide you through it.
Peace and Quiet
Kudos to you for reaching this far! We know that sleeping in the same room with your dog is not for everyone. It can be soothing to cuddle your little bundle of joy at night. But when your puppy is snoring loudly, you are up for some trouble.
As we have mentioned above, there are numerous influential factors and causes that can affect a dog’s breathing, which then manifests as snoring. When it is a harmless occurrence, you can try a few remedies for your pet.
However, if it is a precursor of something more serious, get it checked out by your vet.
And there you have it! We hope that with this awareness, dog snoring will not have to bother you and your little pup anymore and both of you will be totally sound asleep as soon as you hit the sack.