Snorin' Like A Roarin' Train....

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I had never known a dog to snore. Before Suede, I had 4 dogs - Heidi, Max, Morby & Sandy - and had never heard any of them snore. Then came Suede.  The first time I heard her snore, I chuckled and thought it was the cutest thing in the world. But then I started to notice that she snores often AND quite loud. Not loud enough to disturb our sleep - and definitely not loud enough to disturb her own sleep - but enough to wonder if there isn't cause for concern.

In humans, snoring can be something of NO concern or something of EXTREME concern.  In the extreme, it can cause Sleep Apnea which can lead to even more problems for the snorer.  Snoring can be caused by any one, or combination of the following.
  • Obstructed nasal airways, such that might occur from a stuffed nose (think allergies or sinus infection), deviated septum or polyps.
  • Poor muscle tone in the throat and tongue which would result in the tongue falling back into the mouth towards the throat.
  • Bulky throat tissue such as enlarged adenoids, tonsils or being overweight
  • Long soft palate (the soft part, towards the back of the roof of the mouth) and/or uvula (the piece of tissue that hangs down in the back of the mouth) can hinder the passage of air between the nose and the throat.
  • Obesity
In dogs, it is very much the same.  Yes...dogs can, and do, suffer allergies.  And if you have a dog belonging to the Brachycephalic (or "Pug-nosed") breeds, you need to be particularly mindful of any breathing issues, including snoring, as it can be indicative of more serious health issues.

If your dog is a snorer, you should take your dog to the vet to determine what the root cause of the snoring is but there are some things that you can do to make s/he more comfortable and hopefully sleep better.
  • As with humans, second hand smoke is just as deleterious to your pet as it is to people.  It is an irritant and can exacerbate a snoring condition.
  • If the snoring is occurring while your dog is sleeping on its back - and yes some dogs do sleep on their backs - then you should consider getting a round bed.  A snug fitting, round bed encourages the dog to sleep on its side.
  • If it is determined by a vet that your dog has allergies, aside from any medications that might be prescribed by the doctor, you should make every attempt to eliminate any known allergens from the home.
  • As with humans, raising the dogs head might actually help alleviate the snoring by opening up the blocked airways. 
  • If the dog is overweight, you then need to work on the dogs diet as well as exercise - both of which would probably benefit you too...I know it benefits me.
So if your dog is snorin' like a roarin' train...visit the vet!

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