As a fellow dog lover, have you ever been snuggling up with your furry companion only to hear them start making strange snorting noises? If so, don't worry, you're not alone. It happened with my Cavapoo, Bean, so I did some research. If you read this article I'll share with you what I found.
It turns out many dogs experience something called reverse sneezing, and while it can be a bit unsettling to witness, it's usually not a cause for concern. We'll take a closer look at how to stop reverse sneezing, whether we should worry and how much reverse sneezing is considered normal in dogs.
How do I get my dog to stop reverse sneezing?
Reverse sneezing in dogs is typically not harmful, but it can be uncomfortable or distressing for your pup. If you notice your dog experiencing reverse sneezing, there are a few things you can do to help them stop.
Gently massage their throat - Use a soft touch to gently massage your dog's throat, which can help to relax their airway and stop the reverse sneezing.
Pinch their nose - If massaging the throat doesn't work, you can try pinching your dog's nostrils closed for a few seconds. This can help them swallow and clear their airway, which can stop the reverse sneezing.
Offer them water - Giving your dog a drink of water can help to soothe their throat and stop the reverse sneezing.
Use a calming technique - Sometimes, reverse sneezing can be triggered by stress or anxiety. If this is the case, using a calming technique such as deep breathing or massage can help to soothe your dog and prevent reverse sneezing.
You should note that while these techniques can be helpful in stopping reverse sneezing, they may not work for every dog. If your dog experiences frequent or severe reverse sneezing episodes, or if you notice any other concerning symptoms, it's best to consult with your vet to rule out any underlying health issues.
When should I worry about reverse sneezing?
While reverse sneezing in dogs isn’t usually harmful, there are some instances where it may be a cause for concern. Here are some things to watch out for.
How often an episode happens and how long it lasts - If your dog is experiencing frequent or prolonged episodes of reverse sneezing, it's worth checking in with your vet. While it may still be a harmless condition, your vet can help rule out any underlying health issues that may be contributing to it.
Other symptoms - If your dog is experiencing other symptoms such as coughing, wheezing, or difficulty breathing, it's important to seek veterinary care right away. These symptoms may indicate an underlying respiratory issue that needs immediate attention.
Change in behaviour - If you notice a sudden change in your dog's behaviour or energy level, it's always best to err on the side of caution and take them to the vet.
New onset - If your dog has never experienced reverse sneezing before and suddenly starts having episodes, it's a good idea to have them checked out to rule out any underlying health issues.
Remember, every dog is unique and may experience reverse sneezing differently. If you're ever unsure or concerned about your dog's health, it's always best to consult with your vet for guidance.
Next, we’ll consider how often a dog would normally reverse sneeze.
How often is it normal for a dog to reverse sneeze?
Reverse sneezing is common in dogs, and most dogs experience it from time to time. The frequency of reverse sneezing can vary from dog to dog and may depend on factors such as breed, age, and overall health.
Some dogs may only experience reverse sneezing occasionally, while others may have more frequent episodes.
In general, if your dog experiences reverse sneezing occasionally, it's usually not a cause for concern.
While reverse sneezing is typically harmless, it can be uncomfortable or distressing for your furry friend. If you notice your dog experiencing reverse sneezing, you can try using some of the techniques I’ve already mentioned to help stop the episode comfort your dog.
Will reverse sneezing stop on its own?
Yes, reverse sneezing in dogs will typically stop on its own, usually within a few seconds to a minute.
During a reverse sneezing episode, your dog may appear to be inhaling rapidly and making a snorting or honking sound. They may also extend their neck and appear to be trying to clear their airway. While it can be concerning to watch, it's important to remain calm and allow the episode to pass on its own.
if your dog experiences frequent or prolonged episodes of reverse sneezing, or if you notice any other concerning symptoms, it's always best to take your pooch to the vet who may be able to provide additional guidance or recommend treatment options as necessary.
How much is too much reverse sneezing?
Reverse sneezing can occasionally be a sign of an underlying health problem. Therefore, it's important to monitor your dog's reverse sneezing episodes and go to the vet if you notice any of the following.
Increased frequency - If your dog is experiencing reverse sneezing more frequently than usual, this could be a sign of an underlying issue.
Prolonged episodes - If your dog's reverse sneezing episodes last for an extended period, or if they appear to be struggling to breathe during an episode, it's important to take them to your vet.
If your pup is coughing or wheezing as well as reverse sneezing, it’s best to get them checked out.
Luckily, Bean’s attack of reverse sneezing was short, and he seemed fine after, so he didn’t need to go to the vet. Much to his relief, I’m sure!
What breeds are reverse sneezing prone?
While any dog can experience reverse sneezing, some breeds may be more prone to the condition than others. Some of the breeds that are more commonly affected by reverse sneezing include:
- Brachycephalic breeds - These are breeds with short, flat faces, such as Bulldogs, Pugs, and Boxers. Because of their unique facial structure, brachycephalic dogs may be more prone to respiratory issues, including reverse sneezing.
- Toy and small breeds - Small dogs, like Chihuahuas, Yorkies, and Maltese, may be more prone to reverse sneezing because of their small airways.
- Dogs with allergies - Dogs that suffer from allergies or environmental irritants may be more likely to experience reverse sneezing as a symptom.
- Dogs with respiratory infections - Respiratory infections, such as kennel cough, may also lead to reverse sneezing in dogs.
Reverse sneezing is a common and generally harmless condition in dogs. While it can be alarming to witness, remember it's usually not a cause for concern. By understanding the causes and triggers of reverse sneezing, you can help your furry friend feel more comfortable during an episode.
However, if you notice any changes in the frequency or duration of your dog's reverse sneezing episodes, or if you have any concerns about your dog's health, don't hesitate to consult with your vet to make sure you pup remains happy and heathy.
Be sure to read my post on are my dogs playing too rough, if you’re concerned about your pup roughhousing with other dogs.