Dogs too can snore! And pugs are definitely one of those breeds that can keep you up at night because of their snoring.
Is this the case with your pug or another breed you have?
If so, you’re probably wondering the following: Why do dogs snore and can it be stopped?
Relaxing with your dog can be really great some days. Especially if your dog can be a couch potato at times, which pugs really can be the perfect companion for lazy days. However, it might not be that enjoyable if you can’t hear yourself thinking from your dog’s snoring.
So, why do some dogs snore? And what can you do about it? Read on and get your answers!
Why Do Dogs Snore?
Snoring is the sound you hear when there’s an obstruction in the airway, preventing “normal” breathing. When you hear that famous snoring sound, it’s actually the vibrations from the respiratory system you’re hearing.
All dogs can snore and most dogs do from time to time. However, some breeds, pugs included, tend to snore more because of their breathing problems as a brachycephalic breed. As you may know, brachycephalic dogs are characterized by their flat faces that can really make breathing difficult at times. We’ll explain this in a more detailed manner later on.
Generally speaking, the most common reasons behind snoring are:
- Sleeping position
Snoring is a loud breathing sound caused by an obstruction in the airway. All dogs can snore from time to time, but brachycephalic dog breeds, such as pugs, tend to snore more.
Let’s find out more!
As mentioned, pugs and other brachycephalic breeds are prone to snoring because of their genetic predispositions. Namely, pugs, French bulldogs, Boston terriers among others, have flat faces and are prone to the so-called brachycephalic syndrome. This makes breathing more difficult and it’s the reason why these breeds tend to snore more than other dogs.
Apart from the already mentioned breeds, dogs that have genetic predispositions to snoring are:
- Shih Tzus
- Shar Peis
- Chow Chows
- English Toy Spaniels
These breeds have elongated palates because of their short snout, which causes the obstruction. Because this is a genetic condition, you can’t expect your brachycephalic dog to stop snoring completely. However, there are some things you can do to facilitate their breathing when sleeping. But more about that later!
Brachycephalic dog breeds have genetic traits that generally make them more prone to developing respiratory problems, snoring included.
Dogs can be allergic to various things, including pollen, smoke, dust, certain food etc. If you have an allergic dog, you might discover that the snoring has become worse and more frequent.
This is the case with passive smoking as well, which is something many dog owners don’t even think about. However, smoke can really cause problems with dogs’ respiratory system and make the snoring worse. Remember – smoking outside is recommended, whether your dog snores or not.
In order to alleviate the allergy problems you have to keep your dog’s sleeping place clean and dust-free.
Allergies in dogs can cause snoring or make it worse. Check if your dog is allergic to food, dust, pollen or human dander.
Overweight dogs tend to snore more than dogs that don’t have problems with their weight. This is actually the most common cause behind snoring! Because of the extra weight, the nasal passages block the airway, which results in snoring.
So, if your dog has recently put on a couple of pounds, it could be the reason behind the snoring. Obesity is unhealthy for so many reasons, not only snoring, so you should start limiting your dog’s food intake and exercise more if that’s the case with your dog.
A fit dog is less likely to develop a snoring habit than an overweight one.
Dogs are very curious and like to stick their nose wherever they can! This can sometimes result in an unwanted object in their nose or throat, such as grass, sticks, small toys, stones etc. These objects create nasal obstructions, which leads to snoring.
If the reason behind snoring is an object, the snoring should stop when whatever is causing the obstruction is gone.
A temporary physical obstruction in a dog’s nose might be guilty of causing all the snoring. However, it should stop as soon as the obstruction is gone.
Just like people, dogs tend to snore more when they have a cold or when they’re sick. The explanation is completely logical – due to a cold the breathing becomes much more difficult, which makes the dog snore when sleeping.
Dogs can have temporary inflammations in their nose. If that’s the case, the dog will sneeze and snore much more, just like people. This is completely normal and should go away with the cold. However, if it doesn’t stop, take your dog to the vet in order to see if something else is going on.
Colds, temporary inflammations or infections can block your dog’s nasal passages and result in snoring sounds once your dog is asleep.
Just like older people, older dogs tend to snore more than puppies and younger dogs. In fact, puppies almost never snore. The older the dog is, the bigger are the chances of snoring. Unfortunately, there’s not much you can do to stop this, but you should make sure nothing more serious is behind it.
Like humans, snoring in dogs might come with age. Age-induced snoring is difficult to change.
Certain medications can lead to snoring or make it worse. If your dog is currently on some medication due to a health problem, such as antihistamines, pain medicines or muscle relaxers, it could have snoring as temporary consequence. The snoring should stop when your dog isn’t taking medications anymore.
Some medication can cause snoring in dogs.
8. Sleeping Position
A cause that’s not related to genetics, health or age is the position your dog is sleeping in. Namely, dogs that sleep on their back tend to snore more than dogs that are sleeping in a different position.
In order to determine if that’s the reason behind your dog’s snoring, try changing your dog’s sleeping position. Roll him or her over and see if that eliminates the snoring. If it does, it’s likely that it’s the cause behind the snoring.
Before we continue, check out the video below on cute pugs snoring! We know it’s not always cute, especially if you’re dealing with it every night, but maybe this video will help you look at it from the bright side!
If your dog sleeps on his back, chances are that a simple position change will stop the snoring.
How Do I Stop My Dog From Snoring?
The first step is to determine the reason behind your dog’s snoring. When you’ve done that, based on the cause, there are certain things you can do to help your dog snore less, if not stop it completely.
However, you should be aware that you can’t eliminate snoring in certain cases. For instance, there’s not much you can do about a dog that’s snoring because of age. Also, if you have a pug or another brachycephalic dog, you can’t expect the snoring to stop completely, but you can reduce it a bit for sure.
Read these tips and find out how!
- Put a pillow under your dog’s head. This makes the dog raise its head, which can make air come through much easier.
- Use a round bed. As mentioned, dogs that sleep on their back snore more than dogs that sleep on their stomach or curled up. By getting your dog a round bed, chances are big he or she will change the sleeping position and curl up on the side.
- Keep a fan nearby. This can especially help with brachycephalic breeds. By keeping a fan near their sleeping place, air can circulate and help them breath easier. You can also use humidifiers that provide extra moisture in the air, which has proven to reduce snoring.
- Clean the air. This is always important, but especially so if you have an allergic dog. Clean the bedding every dag, vacuum and dust on a regular basis and take your dog for walks when the pollen levels are low (early mornings, late afternoon), if the allergen is pollen.
- Don’t smoke where your dog sleeps. Better yet, don’t smoke at all in the house, as second hand smoke affects everyone in the household – dogs too!
- Prevent obesity. If the reason behind your dog’s snoring is obesity, you should definitely start fixing that problem. Snoring is only one of many reasons. Take regular walks with your dog and control your dog’s food intake. The exercise won’t reduce the snoring, it will make both you and your dog healthier and happier.
In order to make your dog’s snoring disappear or at least keep it more quiet, rearrange your dog’s sleeping environment and make breathing easier by adding a fan nearby. Don’t smoke indoors and make sure your dog is fit.
If Nothing Else Works…
If you’ve tried everything of the above and the snoring still doesn’t stop, you should consult with your vet. Is something more serious behind the snoring? What does he/she suggest?
In same cases, the vet can perform a snout job. This is a small nasal surgery that can be performed on dogs that snore a lot because of genetic predispositions. This usually makes the situation better. However, talk it through with your vet and see if it’s necessary. If your dog doesn’t have big problems, surgery is not necessary.
Also, when you’ve checked that nothing serious is behind your dog’s snoring, but you still want to do something about it as it’s preventing you sleep. Why not simply putting your dog to sleep in a different room? Simple, but will enable you to get a good nights sleep!
All dogs can snore, but some do it more than other. There could be many different reasons behind the snoring; the most common are genetic predispositions, sleeping position, obesity, obstructions in the nose or throat, allergies etc. In order to stop the snoring, you have to try to determine the reason behind it and then see how you can deal with the situation.
If you have a pug, or any other brachycephalic breed, the reason behind snoring is genetic. Because of their flat faces, breathing is much more difficult than with other breeds, which is why they snore much more in general. There are various tricks you can try in order to stop the snoring, such as changing your dog’s sleeping position by buying a round bed or putting a pillow under its head, keeping the bed and surrounding clean and fresh, using a humidifier and a fan in order to keep the air fresh…
However, in some cases you can’t expect the snoring to stop completely, even though you can reduce it a bit. This is the case with senior dogs and with brachycephalic breeds, that will always be prone to snoring. If it becomes a really big problem though, you should consult with your vet and see it your dog should get a snout job in order to get rid of the problem.
Once again – if the snoring is caused by temporary reasons, such as a cold or medications, you should just wait for it to go away. On the other hand, if it’s a permanent problem, try to come up with a good solution for the situation.