dog sleeping on couch

Why are dogs snoring?


You’re napping with your canine companion when you hear snoring. You may find it endearing, or the snoring may keep you awake at night. 

While snoring is normal in dogs, it can sometimes indicate a significant health issue. If your dog has suddenly started snoring or if you’re not sure why your dog is snoring, it’s a good idea to have him checked out by a veterinarian. Some dogs snore, just like people. You’re undoubtedly wondering how snoring affects your dog, whether it started recently or has been going on for a while. What if your dog snores excessively? What causes dog snoring, and should you be concerned if your dog does it? Is it possible to stop your dog from snoring? The most common causes of canine snoring are described below.

In most cases, snoring isn’t a cause for concern if your dog:

Has a snout that is short

Breeds with flat or short faces are doomed to deal with snoring. They’re referred to as “brachycephalic,” which simply means they have a shorter nose than the usual person and are prone to respiratory problems. Pugs, Chihuahuas, Shih Tzus, and Chow Chows are examples of breeds that might snore for the rest of their lives without causing major health problems. However, according to Dr. Hohenhaus, these dogs are prone to respiratory problems that prevent them from obtaining adequate oxygen, which can typically be resolved with surgery. Whether you have a brachycephalic puppy, your veterinarian will be able to tell you whether there are any greater issues or if everything is well.

Has a cold or allergies

Is your dog’s snoring limited to the summer? They, like us, are undoubtedly suffering from seasonal allergies. He may create more mucus as a result of the allergy, which might be the source of the problem. If your dog is sensitive to dust, pollen, or other physical allergens, Dr. Hohenhaus suggests keeping them indoors with air conditioning and wiping their faces and paws when they come inside. If your dog has been sneezing, congested, and has watery eyes, he might be suffering from a cold, which could also be the cause of his snoring. If your dog is still performing normally (eating, drinking, and playing), a trip to the clinic isn’t necessary, but if their symptoms linger or worsen, it is.

Position of sleep

Your dog may regale you with frequent snoring sessions if he or she is one of those laid-back creatures who prefers to sleep stretched on their backs. The airflow entering your dog’s neck can be greatly influenced by his sleeping position. Back sleepers frequently have their tongue partially obstruct their throat, resulting in loud snoring. The neck’s form and location can also have a role.


Obesity is associated to a variety of health issues, but it is most strongly linked to snoring in dogs. Any extra weight your dog carries will put greater strain on their respiration. Internal fat contributes to the weight of tissue in the airway and palate, which makes noise as they breathe in, as well as fat around the ribcage, which makes their breathing systems work harder every time they take a breath.

Is it normal that dog snoring while he’s awake?

Although your dog’s snoring may be typical, it’s crucial to recognize when you should be worried. If your dog begins snoring abruptly, or if snoring grows louder, or if your dog exhibits other symptoms such as sneezing, coughing, or changes in appetite or behavior in addition to snoring, you should call your veterinarian. Contact your veterinarian right away if you find your dog wheezing or having trouble breathing.

Your dog has only recently begun to snore

You know your dog’s “normal” better than anybody, and you’ll notice if he shifts from a sound sleeper to a log sawer. Dr. Hohenhaus notes, “If your dog has never snored in its life, that means there’s a mass somewhere impeding their breathing; either in their nose, voice box, windpipe, or anywhere in their respiratory system.” This tumor might be anything from an enlarged lymph node to a foreign item lodged in the trachea, therefore she advises seeing a veterinarian as soon as possible rather than waiting too long.

Obesity may be the source of your dog’s snoring at night, despite the fact that this is a separate health concern. “Basically, if a dog is overweight, the extra fat restricts their airways, resulting in snoring,” Dr. Hohenhaus explained. Being at a healthy weight is beneficial for a variety of reasons, so start with a balanced diet and some exercise and you’ll be able to enjoy some peace and quiet in no time.

How to stop dog snoring

If your dog prefers to sleep on their back, encouraging them to sleep on their side may be beneficial. Night-time noise can also be reduced by elevating their heads with a cushion.

Dogs that suffer from respiratory allergies will benefit from living in a smoke-free environment. Air fresheners and scented candles can also induce problems in sensitive dogs, so these should be avoided. Washing them down after walks to eliminate pollen, walking at times of day when pollen counts are low (such as early mornings or nights), and washing their bedding on a regular basis can also assist.

A thorough vacuuming of the house on a regular basis will help to prevent dust and spores that might irritate the airway. Humidifiers can improve the quality of the air you breathe. Keeping your dog on a healthy diet and engaging in regular exercise that is suitable for their size and energy levels will benefit them in a variety of ways. Having a skinny dog, on the other hand, will almost surely lower the likelihood of snoring, which may be a handy incentive for all you sleep-deprived dog-parents out there!

Some brachycephalic (short-faced) dogs with severe symptoms may require airway surgery to remove some of the extra palate and open up the nose. This is something you should address with a veterinary surgeon. Although not to be taken lightly, it has the potential to be extremely useful.

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