Why Does My Dog Snore? 


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One big question we often get is "why does my dog snore", and "why is it so loud!?"

If you are tossing and turning in bed due to the snores of your canine friend, it might be high time you get to the root of the problem.

While it may be comforting for some dog owners to listen to their endearing snuffles, there are health issues attributed to their incessant snores. 

People usually wonder, “Is it bad if my dog snores?” A snoring dog may not always indicate a medical problem, so keep your ear out for nascent abnormalities.

If you want to know why your dog snores and if there are possible health concerns, read on to learn more. 

Why Do Dogs Snore? 

A dog snores due to the obstruction of air in the nasal passages or throat. Just like humans, dogs snore due to the blockage of these vestibules. There are higher chances of them snoring if they sleep on their back.

Some snore due to their breed, as dogs with flat faces and short snorts are more prone to snoring. 

Dogs with short snorts are known as brachycephalic dogs. These breeds are genetically predisposed to noisy breathing and snorting even when awake. Some examples include Shih Tzus, English Bulldog, or pug. 

While snoring itself is not a cause of concern, you should keep an eye out for the symptoms listed below: 

  • Discharge from eyes and nose 
  • Lethargy and loss of appetite 
  • Choking on food 
  • Swollen facial parts 
  • Wavered breathing, coughing, and gasping for air

A dog’s breathing and snoring patterns should be monitored and followed by a visit to your veterinarian consequently if it continues over a period of time. 

Causes of Dog Snoring

A dog’s nose is pretty sensitive and is prone to infections, just like its floppy ears. There are several reasons that lead to snoring in dogs. Some of the most common causes are listed below:


Obstructed Nasal Passages

If your dog suddenly starts snoring, it may be due to the sleeping position. This can be as simple as your dog sleeping in the wrong position and keeping toys or other objects near the vicinity of where your furry friend sleeps. 

They experience noisy breathing whenever there is an exterior source blocking their passage.

So, if there are toys or other objects lying around your bed, you should immediately discard them. If the snoring persists, it is advisable to seek veterinary advice.


Sleep Apnea


According to Dr. Carol Osbourne from the Chagrin Falls Veterinary Center, sleep apnea is an extremely rare medical condition that affects both humans and dogs. [source]

It is a sleeping disorder where your dog’s breath becomes shallow and repeatedly stops and starts. After your dog starts breathing again, one can notice a sharp intake of breath which more or less sounds like snoring. 

If you are concerned about your pet’s breathing patterns and are sure that they suddenly start snoring, seek medical attention immediately.


Excess Weight 

Overweight dogs accumulate extra fat throughout the body, especially near their facial areas. Their throat is covered in fat if they are overweight or obese.

Obese dogs have a tendency to snore loudly due to the extra fat deposited in their necks, thereby constricting the upper airways.

This results in a blockage of the nasal passages and causes snoring in dogs. If your veterinarian has raised concerns regarding your pet’s weight, you should consider a weight loss plan for them to curb further illnesses.


Predisposed Allergies 

Allergies stem from the body’s reaction to a harmless foreign substance in the environment. A dog’s immune system reacts to substances like pollen, dust, and dander, making it hard to breathe. 

There are also chances of your dog snoring due to seasonal allergies.

Allergies usually have different symptoms like itching, coughing, and sneezing. Snoring is caused due to the excessive production of mucus which accumulates in the nasal cavity. 

Allergies may even cause inflammation near the throat and block the passage of air. Many people ask a common question - “My dog snores and sounds congested. What should I do?”

The simple answer is that if your dog snores due to a cold and cough but still acts normal (eating, drinking, and playing), then you do not have to take a trip to the pet clinic. 

Dental Problems


Dental issues are quite common in many dogs, and surprisingly, they may affect their snoring habits. An abscessed tooth or any other growth in the oral cavity and sinuses can cause snoring.

Additionally, an abscessed tooth can also trigger inflammations in the nasal passages and partially block the airways. 

These types of abnormalities are detrimental to your dog’s health. Remember to stay on top of dental checkups and keep an eye out for unusual formations even at home.


Fungal Disease

Aspergillosis which is commonly known as fungal disease occurs when your dog inhales mold spores in the hay, grass, and compost piles. These spores infiltrate into the lining of the nasal cavity and cause snoring in them. 

Eliminating the infection can be an extensive process but make sure your drop a visit at your veterinary center for expert intervention. 


Dr. Carol Osbourne confirms that snoring is an indicator of underlying thyroid conditions such as hypothyroidism. This happens when the thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormone into the bloodstream. 

The healing process is inexpensive though it will require your dog to go on medication for the rest of its life.


Respiratory Issues


Respiratory illnesses such as asthma and bacterial or fungal infections can affect a dog's snoring patterns. Viral respiratory infections such as cough or flu can affect the nasal cavity exponentially.

Remember that to answer the question of 'why does my dog snore?' - the answer isn't always a straightforward one. Speak to your vet to help diagnose the issue faster, or to determine if it's a serious reason.



Why Does My Dog Snore When Awake?

The reasons are generally similar to when your dog snores while sleeping. Ingesting or inhaling a foreign object can also restrict the airways and cause snoring.


How to Prevent My Dog from Snoring? 

It is imperative to combine a healthy diet with daily training to ensure your dog’s body is functioning well. Regular veterinarian visits also aid in maintaining the physical and mental well-being of your pet. 

Final Words 

Some breeds exhibit symptoms of snoring due to their anatomy, while others are prone to infections and diseases. The reason why your dog snores depends on several factors, and to directly assess it, you should consult your veterinarian. 

So remember, 'why does my dog snore?' - it can be a complex question which can range from your dog breed, to illnesses or dental issues.

about the author

Frank Harrigan

Frank loves tacos and dogs - the good, bad and ugly sides of dog ownership.

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