Why do dogs snore? Causes and how to fix it


We have all snored sometime and our pets do too. This sound, sometimes subtle and sometimes quite thunderous, “is a vibration that is generated by the partial closure of an upper airway such as the larynx”, Explains Fabio Ramírez Coral, specialist in internal medicine at the Medicar Veterinary Clinic.

The reasons why it occurs are varied and may be related to illness, overweight or bad sleeping position.

“Many times what happens is that pets go into deep sleep and their soft palate relaxes and that's why they snore,” says Ramírez. But on other occasions it may be the symptom of a more serious problem.

Flat problem

The boxer, french bulldog, the Pekingese and Persian cats have in common that they are brachycephals (or flat-nosed) and this makes them anatomically more likely to have respiratory problems, and therefore, professional snorers.

"Some have brachycephalic syndrome, with very narrow nostrils, very long soft palate and may need surgery to breathe well," says Daniel Bohorquez, a veterinarian at the Udca. Although this is not the diagnosis in all cases and maybe when you take it to the doctor's office they tell you that it is perfectly normal.

But snoring has other causes. A very common and that you can easily deduce is the obesity.

Like people, overweight pets tend to snore more frequently.

"They accumulate more fat in the abdomen and neck, which can lead to the partial closure of these airways," says Ramírez. So if your animal's snoring is accompanied by a few extra pounds, the solution is diet, and if it can be exercised along with it it will be much more fun.

Another explanation is the medications you are supplying. Sedatives, muscle relaxants, even valerian also relax your soft palate as in deep sleep and make them snore, but this should cease as soon as the medication is withdrawn.

A bad position

Another element that greatly influences is the posture that the pet adopts when sleeping. "Dogs usually sleep in a fetal position, on their side, face down with their legs open or face up, it is in the latter where snoring occurs most," explains Ramírez.

Snoring is also associated with allergic reactions that animals can present to substances or elements they smell, insect bites or even food they consume, but this is not entirely true.

"It is an indirect cause, because when an allergic reaction occurs, the airways can become inflamed, although it is only one of the many symptoms that occur and is not the one that should worry you the most," says Bohorquez.

Follow up at home

If snoring is caused by a bad position of the pet when sleeping, you can accommodate it yourself when you discover it snoring.

Using pillows, ensure that the animal's head is higher than the rest of its body. For this purpose, round beds with prominent edges also help the pet adopt a better position.

Watch for the change in snoring, as this may indicate a disease, in the worst case a tumor is clogging your airways. Therefore, if the animal snores all the time, even awake, and this is accompanied by sneezing, coughing and / or breathing problems, a consultation with the veterinarian will be necessary.


It is important to know that a tumor or cyst, if not treated in time, it can be dangerous and deadly, so it is recommended to follow medical instructions. The use of remedies, such as sedatives, They can cause snoring and in addition to being fatal in large quantities, you should be aware of the doses.

The snoring of a dog can be because of all these agents, however with the necessary care, the problem will be solved easily. We hope you already know why dogs snore and that from now on, it doesn't take you long for your dog to let you sleep like before.

2.- Genetics

Some dog breeds are more likely to snore than another. Flat-nosed dogs such as pugs, bulldogs or boxers are much more likely to snore while they sleep than other breeds. These breeds called brachycephals have much shorter airways and in some cases the effort they must make to breathe is greater than that of long-nosed dog breeds.

3.- Allergies or sensitivity

Some dogs, like humans, may have certain odor sensitivities and develop allergies to certain things. These allergies can be common things for humans such as pollen, dust or perfume which can cause them to snore at bedtime just as it happens with us.

7.- Cigarette smoke

If you need one more reason to quit smoking, this may help you a little. Many people have no idea how their habits could be affecting the health of their pet and in the case of cigarettes, this can cause dogs the same damage as in humans affecting the good health of their respiratory system causing asthma or bronchitis. of night snoring.

Snoring can be the result of a fungal disease known as aspergillosis. This disease can be caused by mold when it gets into the wet pavilions of the nose and can cause symptoms such as sneezing, inflammation of the mucosa and snoring.

Dogs can catch a cold just like us and this can sometimes lead to constipation. The mucous membranes become inflamed and irritated due to infection, which can lead to nasal discharge, sneezing, shortness of breath and snoring.

1.- To help an allergic dog

  • Clean your dog's bedding daily as you would with yours to remove dust.
  • Vacuum or keep the carpets and curtains of the house very clean.
  • Dog walks should be done early in the morning or late in the afternoon to avoid excessive smoke, pollen and pollutants from the environment.
  • Acquire a hum> 2.- Help with your dog's posture
  • Give him a pillow, maybe this will help him raise his head a little during sleeping hours and thus reduce snoring> 3.- Control your weight
  • If your dog is overweight this may be the cause of snoring> 4.- Effect of medicines
  • Snoring> 5.- Short snout dogs
  • There is not much to do to fight against nature, however, if your dog's respiratory test is very serious, it may need to be corrected> When it is necessary to go to the veterinarian

We already have a little clear why dogs snore, however, sometimes snoring can be a warning sign that something is not right in the health of our pet.
If our dog had not had snoring before and they appear suddenly, especially if they are accompanied by other symptoms such as nasal discharges and inflammation of the mucosa, it is time to call our trusted veterinarian.

You may be interested to know why dogs growl

The medical reasons why dogs begin to snore are varied, some of them do not present great dangers for the animal but others do. A simple flu or cold, the development of an allergy and even a tumor that is blocking the airways are some of the things that the specialist will look for when finding an answer to your dog's snoring.

Snoring in flat dogs

Some dogs snore more than others. It is the case of the breeds of dogs of crushed face, flat snouts and facial folds, such as bulldog dogs, Carlino's dog or Pekingese. The peculiar anatomy of these pets hinders the passage of air through the snout and the larynx: the bone structure of the snout is shorter and narrower than usual.

The anatomy of flat dogs makes it difficult for air to pass through the snout and larynx

The air, consequently, has less space to enter the lungs and hits the muzzle walls. This explains the usual noise or snoring that characterizes these pets of flat breeds. The so-called brachycephalic syndrome groups together the set of respiratory abnormalities that dogs with a crushed face can suffer.

The dog snores: something blocks the air intake

The dog has between 200 and 300 million cells specialized in capturing odors (people, at best, have five million). This large number of olfactory detectors explains that the dog is an animal accustomed to discovering the world through tracking with its snout. It has a huge capacity to receive and distinguish odors.

The dog sniffs sandy soil or with other particles that can end up inside its snout

However, the dog does not always track smooth surfaces. It is not uncommon to sniff sandy ground or other particles that can end up inside your snout. The entry of objects strangers in the airways The pet can explain certain abnormal snoring.

Sometimes, these materials are dangerous for the dog because, if they have enough size, they block the normal entry of air. In these cases, it is convenient to make a prompt visit to the veterinarian to avoid complications.

It is important to distinguish the normal snoring of the dog from nasal noises that can warn of a disease

A excessive mucus it can block and narrow the passage of air to the lungs and generate, consequently, an abnormal noise.

But snoring can also warn that our dog has a disease. It is the case of infections in the airways or throat or, worse, tumors In the snout area, they are able to impede the entry of air flow. The veterinarian will be, in each case, who determines the reason for these noises in the dog's breathing.

Flat-nosed dogs tend to snore

I have a pug or carlino, is it normal for my dog ​​to snore? Yes! Dogs with a flat snout have slightly shorter airways, so sometimes your breathing is somewhat complex and sounds because the air has less space to reach the lungs. If you have a pug or a bulldog, for example, You will have noticed that he snores. It is normal! Virtually all dogs of those breeds do it. In fact, they also "snore" awake!

Tips when a dog snores

Remember that snoring in the dog is due to excessive vibration of the inner walls of the animal's snout because of breathing.

In dogs of flat breeds, their peculiar anatomy hinders the passage of air through their snout and generates noise when breathing.

The entry of foreign elements into the pet's airways can explain certain abnormal snoring.

Large particles in the animal's snout can be dangerous, by blocking the normal entry of air.

Sometimes, snoring warns that our dog suffers from some disease.

Tumors in the snout area are able to impede the entry of air flow.

In case of abnormal snoring, the veterinarian is the one who will best advise what to do in each case.

Why is snoring>

Snoring is caused by a obstruction of the trachea, respiratory passages or nostrils that cause a reduction of the respiratory tract and therefore an excessive vibration of its walls. There are several reasons that can cause a dog to snore. Some are physiognomic, such as a weak throat, tension in the jaw or facial features of the can. Others are temporary and caused by external agents such as medication, body posture when sleeping, an obstruction of the nasal passage, overweight or an allergic reaction. Below we explain some.

Allergic reaction

Sometimes snoring is caused by an allergic reaction that causes a narrowing in the airways. Allergies prevent the proper circulation of oxygen and can also cause sneezing and runny nose, a sign that they directly affect the respiratory tract. If a dog is prone to allergies, exposure to dust, pollen or smoke will increase snoring.

To eliminate snoring caused by allergies you can try to clean the area where the dog sleeps, as well as his blanket to remove dust and dead hair, in addition to vacuuming carpets and curtains frequently. The dog can also be taken for a walk in the early morning and at dusk, when the levels of pollen, dust and smoke are lower and Cigarette and kitchen fumes should be avoided.

Overweight causes an appearance of tissue around the throat It can cause partial obstruction in the airways and produce snoring. The snoring will disappear when the overweight is corrected.

Nasal duct obstruction

The obstruction of the nasal passage can be caused by external agents (especially if you like to make holes or roll through the grass, or even when eating and drinking, residues can be introduced into the nostrils), a tumor or cyst (in which case there is no more remedy than to operate the animal) or because he has a cold and a stuffy nose. In these cases the snoring is temporary and It is reduced by cleaning your dog's nose.

My dog ​​snores and doesn't have a flat snout, why is it then?

Dogs perceive the world through smell, And they are tremendously curious! They spend their lives putting their nose in everything to perceive all possible aromas, Not surprisingly, there are dogs that detect breast cancer through smell, and there are even dogs that can detect hypoglycemia. Sometimes, this constant sniffing causes some unwanted particles or small objects to enter your airways, causing them to snore when you breathe.

If you think this could have happened to your dog, don't worry! You will need to take it to the vet, but most likely it can be removed without problems.

Facial features

The sunken-faced breeds have a short nose, a soft and very long palate and a very narrow trachea, which reduces respiratory capacity to some extent because the entire capacity of the nose cannot be used. The breeds of dogs prone to snoring for having this physiognomy are especially the Boston Terrier, the Bulldog, the Boxer, the Pug, the Pekingese, the Shih Tzu, the Chow Chow and the Shar Pei.

What if my dog ​​snores because he is sick?

Do not panic! If possible, A dog may have respiratory abnormalities that cause these snoring. It can be a simple cold, for example: if you have mucus, it will make it hard for you to breathe and snore. It can also be a respiratory infection or, in more unusual and serious cases, even a tumor in the snout.

Remember that if you want to take better care of your dog in winter, there are some tips you can follow!

Remedies to eliminate or alleviate snoring

For dogs with chronic snoring, there are several remedies that can help you improve posture or to breathe better, such as pillows, so that the dog lifts its head, a round bed, whose shape forces the dog to take a curved position allows the air ducts to expand, a humidifier, which moistens the air and reduces the snoring, or even changing the room dog to eliminate the allergens that cause snoring. In very extreme cases, surgery may be applied., but always weighing the dangers and advantages that entails.

I know why dogs snore, what do I do to know what is the case with my pet?

If snoring occurs only at a certain time, it may simply be that you are asleep in a position that makes it difficult for you to breatheFor example, sometimes they put their legs in front of the face, or their bed covers part of their truffle. If you hear that your dog snores and is something he doesn't usually do, try changing your posture to see if this is solved.

If you see that it is not solved and that it persists over time, then you will have to take action. As we have said, in snout dogs it is normal to hear snoring, it is something innate and has no solution, but the rest of the dogs should not snore ... If your dog does, there is probably a problem behind.

If your dog does not stop snoring, go to the vet! Only he is able to find a successful diagnosis and put a solution. We don't say you should be scared most likely, with the right medical treatment the problem will be solved soon, but don't let it go, let alone take your snoring as something fun!

We hope this post on why dogs snore helps you find the right motive and solution for your hairy snoring.