Have you ever been woken up by a loud snorer in the room? You look around, ready to chide the culprit. It turns out to be your furkid who’s snoring to his heart’s content while you fight an internal war on whether to wake him up. Yes, dogs do snore and here’s why.
Some dogs breeds are naturally predisposed to snoring, specifically our flat-faced friends (aka brachycephalic dogs): Shih Tzu, Pugs, Pekingese, etc. Their facial structure is such that they have a short skull with a short snout i.e. short air passages. This means that it takes more effort for them to breathe compared to other breeds, so they can’t help but snore as their windpipe flattens. It’s generally not a cause for concern, but do keep a lookout for increased struggles in breathing while they’re asleep!
That’s right, putting on a few pounds can also be the cause of snoring! Extra weight means extra fat around the throat which blocks the airway, making it difficult for dogs to breathe. It’s even harder on dogs with short snouts as it exacerbates the pre-existing struggle to breathe. Snoring aside, obesity in dogs is a real problem that can lead to bigger health implications. Keep their weight in check with the Wellness Weight Management Dog Food and couple that with regular exercise for healthy, snoreless pups!
Brachycephalic breeds have a smaller jaw but the same number of teeth as other breeds. This can lead to many potential dental diseases and cavities due to overcrowding. Maintain good dental hygiene habits to prevent unwanted growths that could inhibit proper breathing.
You could also try including dental chews like Whimzees into their oral routine to make dental care more fun.
Allergies could also spark the onset of snoring. Dogs use their nose to sniff out everything, meaning they come into contact with allergy triggers such as dust all the time. Mucus forms as a result, blocking the nasal passageway, in turn inducing heavy breathing. If your dog is known to have allergies, you should keep his environment dust-free as best as you can - whether it’s through daily vacuuming or weekly bed washes.
Good Dog People also carries allergy aid supplements like NaturVet's Aller-911® Soft Chew Dog Supplement that can help with allergies in dogs.
Snoring doesn’t have to come about only in the presence of plausible health problems. It can also be attributed to something as minor as their sleeping position. Dogs that sleep on their backs are more likely to be noisy sleepers as their tongue falls back into their throat - obstructing the air passageways. To convert belly-up-sleepers into belly-down-sleepers, consider investing in a round bed with a raised edge like Fuzzyard Beds. This encourages them to sleep in a curled position with their heads elevated, expanding the airways and alleviating the snores.
It is what it is
For the most part, snoring is not a cause for concern. You should, however, be alarmed if your dog has never snored but recently started to; take him to the vet to have it checked. Other than that, it’s perfectly normal to hear the occasional snore here and there. And hey, if you’re ever looking to test the effectiveness of ear plugs, this would be a good time.
Kim is an avid dog lover, serial guac and chips eater, and thrill seeker - all in one body. Currently chillin’ with her dogs.