Animals

What to do if your dog does not breathe?

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Excessive snoring of a flat dog can alert you to suffering from brachycephalic syndrome, which causes serious respiratory problems for the animal

  • Author: By EVA SAN MARTÍN
  • Publication date: January 30, 2012

Crushed-faced dog breeds, with flat snouts and facial folds, need certain special care. The features of these animals can cause respiratory problems and make them more vulnerable to heat stroke. The so-called brachycephalic syndrome groups together the set of respiratory abnormalities that flat dogs can suffer. Detecting the problem in time is key to avoid major problems.

Not all flat dogs have to suffer from brachycephalic syndrome, although the particular anatomy of these crushed-faced animals makes them prone. The breeds most predisposed to suffer respiratory problems due to the particular physiognomy are: Bulldog, Carlino, Boxer, Pekingese, Boston Terrier and Shi Tzu.

The peculiar anatomy of brachycephalic dog, of flat shape and folds in the face, it prevents the normal flow of air through its snout and larynx. The bones of the face of these races are very compressed. The bone structure of the snout also shortens and narrows. The air, consequently, has less space to access the dog's lungs.

The narrowing of nostrils It is not the only peculiarity of flat dogs. Your trachea, narrower than usual, aggravates your breathing problems. All these special features can cause respiratory difficulties in the animal. While making it more vulnerable to certain unforeseen events, such as heat stroke.

Longer soft palate

That the bones of the face narrow and shorten in a brachycephalic dog does not imply that all organs do. He soft palate, which separates the back of the nasal cavity and mouth, is not always reduced in the same proportion as the bones. And this disproportion, hinders the entry of air,: The soft palate extends to the back of the throat and may partially block the airways.

Strange breathing noises and excessive snoring are warning signs

"Although some brachycephalic breeds have a short soft palate in proportion to the shortening of the skull bones, many have an elongated, disproportionate soft palate, which hinders the pharynx", explains the veterinarian Marcelo Cando. When the dog breathes, the air vibrates the elongated palate. For the veterinarian, this repeated movement of the palate hit by the entrance of the air is comparable to that performed by a mixer.

The elongated palate acts like a blender, so that the palate converts the dog's saliva into a type of meringue, which has to be expelled. The presence of white foam In the dog's saliva it can be a symptom that the dog suffers from brachycephalic syndrome. And it is reason enough to visit your veterinarian.

An orchestra of snoring

A peculiarity of the brachycephalic dog is that it does strange noises When you breathe. The patting of the palate, in the case of dogs with the soft palate elongated, adds more variety of sounds to the snoring orchestra that characterizes the brachycephalic dog. The snoring excessive and short periods without taking air while sleeping are other notices to take into account. In extreme cases, the animal can lose consciousness, suffer fainting and the inside of its lips turn a bluish color.

Veterinarian Jan Grabe explains that brachycephalic syndrome is behind some premature deaths They suffer the flat breeds of dogs. How many times have we heard that a French Bulldog has died young suddenly? , asks Grabe. "The deaths are usually attributed to a heart attack, but the cause is that the airways have been closed too long," he adds. "They happen when the dog is excited, is exercising or there is an excess of heat."

Less exercise and avoid heat

The difficult breathing of the brachycephalic dog implies that less air reaches the lungs, and therefore, less oxygen in its blood. The abnormal shortage of oxygen in the blood makes some advisable habits changeshow to stop physical activity intense

Dogs eliminate most of the excess of hot Through the lungs But, in this case, the lung capacity is reduced and its mechanism to lose temperature is not as effective as in the case of other races. This explains that the high temperatures, the stress or the simple excitement cause respiratory distress, which worsens with obesity.

Brachiocephalic syndrome is behind some premature deaths suffered by flat breeds of dogs

"It does not matter if the dog breathes heavily due to heat, exercise or motivated by simple excitement: the resulting stress is the same," says veterinarian Marcelo Cando. "Most flat dog owners know their pet's tendency to overheat. However, few know that when the dog force your breath, is able to cause the progressive collapse of their airways. This deterioration can even kill a dog with chronic problems of this type. "

A prompt visit to the veterinarian can help fight the disease that sometimes requires a surgical operation of the nostrils and the elongated white palate.

Wear a harness instead of the collar. It will facilitate the breathing of your flat dog.

Avoid excessive heat and lack of ambient humidity. Brachycephalic dogs are ventilated worse.

Keep your pet's nostrils clean of mucus.

Limit your dog's physical exercise in hot weather. A brachycephalic dog may suffer from exercise intolerance.

Bring water for long walks. Your dog is more susceptible to heat stroke.

Watch your dog's weight.

See a veterinarian soon for any symptoms, noisy breathing, excessive snoring or presence of white foam with saliva.

First aid is not a substitute for veterinary care nor should it delay the arrival of your pet at a veterinary clinic.

We know that many owners are concerned about the health of their dogs, and that is why we bring you important first aid advice in case you do not have access to a clinic or until your pet receives veterinary treatment. Remember that first aid is not a substitute for veterinary care nor should it delay the arrival of your pet at a veterinary clinic.

The first thing you should keep in mind before helping your pet is your safety. Avoid being bitten or assaulted. If your dog is injured, he may have pain, be scared or confused. Pain and fear can make your pet unpredictable, and even dangerous. Do not hug your pet. If he lets you pet her, you can do it to calm her down.

If your dog does not breathe / Artificial Breathing

• If your dog is not breathing, but still has a heartbeat, proceed to the next steps.

• Before giving artificial respiration: open the airway by pulling the head carefully so that the neck is stretched. Pull the tongue gently out until it is flat (see image 1). Check the throat and verify that there is no object blocking the path. If it is not blocked, you should give artificial respiration.

Keep the dog lying on the floor and with the neck extended. Lie next to the dog, so you don't have to twist his neck. Close your pet's snout with your hands and blow directly into its nose as if you were inflating a balloon, until you see the chest inflate (see image 2). It is important that you do not blow too hard, but do so slowly, because you could damage your lungs.

The amount of air you blow will depend on the dog. The larger, more air, and the smaller, less air. The movement of the chest must be natural.

• Once the chest is inflated, give a breath every 4-5 seconds.

Bulldog breathing problems

The bulldog is one of the most striking and most fashionable breeds in recent years. His calm and good-natured character has made him one of the favorite dogs to have as a family, however, they have a delicate health and especially suffer respiratory problems that we must monitor.

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW…
  • Hot: the bulldog does not withstand high temperatures so we must avoid the moments of intense sun in summer.
  • Exercise: This breed does not support intense physical activity because it could have trouble breathing.
  • Treatment: The bulldog's respiratory problems have a surgical solution that must be assessed by the veterinarian.

He bulldog has several genetic pathologies that, although they have tried to improve by the Breeders, are very complicated to cure.

Brachycephalic syndrome

its morphology It is partly responsible for these problems, it is an animal that cannot perform activities that require large physical efforts and continuously or be subjected to high temperatures. Even the females at the time of delivery they need help, bulldog deliveries are usually through Caesarean section for the inability to breathe normally.

Bulldog have a respiratory insufficiency usually caused by the brachycephalic syndrome, a very common problem that is motivated by various anomalies in the respiratory tract more or less serious depending on the case.

Usually this breed has trouble breathing normally through the nose and needs to do it through the mouth, which sometimes causes snoring at bedtime. That is why it is so important not to subject it to high temperatures, since to his difficulty to breathe will be joined the gasping used by any dog ​​to cool down, which can cause him to collapse.

Surgical solution assessed by the veterinarian

This has a surgical solutionbut it must be the vet who is responsible for recommending that option with a previous case study.

By not enduring too intense physical activity, the rides that we give with our bulldog must be short. We should not force him to do more than he is capable of, but we must not let him become lazy or start with problems of overweight They will also hurt your breathing.

In summer It is preferable to avoid the moments of the day with intense sun and keep the animal inside the house in the cooler rooms.

The cause: brachycephalic syndrome

Dogs that have a crushed face, with flat snouts and facial folds, need special care so they can lead a quiet life. And they may have problems, not only for breathing, but also for swallowing, in addition to produce an excessive amount of saliva by having a soft palate longer than normal and have narrower nostrils than would be appropriate.

To this we must add that they can have digestive disorders due to the negative pressure that is produced in the thorax due to the effort of breathing.

It has a solution?

Fortunately, yes. Consists in practice onesurgery in order to expand the nostrils and cut off the part of the soft palate left over. It is a simple operation, but the hairy must be hospitalized until they have fully recovered to avoid problems.

Still, if you can't afford this expense, It is very important that you avoid taking them for a walk on the hottest days, and that you do not force them to exercise excessively, otherwise your life could be in danger. For this reason, it is also important that you take them to the veterinarian regularly for a review.

Brachycephalic dogs are lovely animals, but you have to keep in mind that they need to be properly cared for so they can lead a normal life. If you are willing to live with one of these hairy, you will surely know how to reward 🙂.

If there is no heartbeat / Cardiopulmonary resuscitation

Before carrying out CPR, take into account that it is a maneuver that can have complications in a healthy dog ​​and should only be carried out when absolutely necessary. In addition, it is difficult for the maneuver to succeed.

Since the heart is located on the left side of the chest, lie it on a flat surface on your right side. The point where you are going to perform the cardiac massage is right at the point where when flexing the leg, the elbow touches the chest.

• If the dog weighs less than 14kg:

Put one hand on the back of the dog for support and the other around the heart (see image 3).

• If the dog shows no signs of improvement within 10 minutes, you can stop. Artificial respiration has not been successful.

• If you manage to return your animal to normal breathing, take it to the veterinarian as soon as possible so that they can attend to the consequences.

Press the chest firmly and quickly so that the chest sinks 1-2cm depending on the size of the dog. You must keep up with 2 compressions per second.
Perform cardiac massage for 15 seconds and then give artificial respiration for 15 seconds. To do this, keep the dog lying on the floor and with the neck extended. Lie on your side, so you don't have to twist your neck. Close your pet's snout with your hand and blow directly into its nose as if you were inflating a balloon, until you see the chest inflate. It is important that you do not blow too hard, but that you do it slowly, because you could damage the lungs (see image 4).

If there is more than one person, one should do a cardiac massage cycle, and then the other person give artificial respiration. Continue until you feel heartbeat and your dog breathes regularly, until you have reached the veterinary clinic, or until a veterinarian has taken your place. If the dog shows no signs of improvement within 10 minutes, you can stop. Cardiopulmonary resuscitation has not been successful.

If your dog weighs more than 14kgs:

Put one hand on the chest, through the region of the heart and put the other palm on the hand (see image 5).

Without bending your elbows, press the ribcage down.
• Compresses the chest 1/4 to 1/3 of its size at a rate of 1 compression per second.
• Do the cardiac massage for 15 seconds and then give artificial respiration for 15 seconds. To do this, keep the dog lying on the floor and with the neck extended. Lie on your side, so you don't have to twist your neck. Close your pet's snout with your hand and blow directly into its nose as if you were inflating a balloon, until you see the chest inflate. It is important that you do not blow too hard, but do so slowly, because you could damage your lungs.
• Continue until you feel heartbeat and your dog breathes regularly, until you have reached the veterinary clinic, or until a veterinarian has taken your place.
• If the dog shows no signs of improvement within 10 minutes, you can stop. Cardiopulmonary resuscitation has not been successful.

Always remember that any first aid maneuver administered to your pet should be followed by your veterinarian's review.

Trache-bronchitis

Known as "kennel cough." It is caused by viruses, bacteria, fungi or parasites. Your partner will have persistent, dry and intense cough. Occasionally, mucus and pus also appear in the nose. It is spread very easily among dogs, but it also heals easily.

Respiratory distress syndrome

It is a narrowing at a certain point in the trachea. It usually appears in elderly dogs who have had chronic cough. The cough sounds like the croaking of a goose. It is enough common in animals of small breeds like the Chihuahuas, the Toy Poodle or the Yorkshire Terrier.

Chronic bronchitis

Cough for a period longer than two months. It may be due to chronic infections, allergies or inhalation of irritants. When they suffer they may have difficulties or avoid physical activities.

Although these are the main causes of respiratory diseases, remember that if you think your dog suffers any, it is always essential to evaluate your veterinarian. He will determine the correct diagnosis and the most appropriate treatment for your dog.

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