Is it Normal That My Dog Snores?

Do you have a dog who seems to snore a lot? Is this normal, or is it something you should be worried about? Have you ever stopped to consider whether your dog’s snoring could be an indication of some underlying health problem?

If you’re a pet owner, it’s normal to worry if you hear your dog snoring now and then. For the most part, dog snoring periodically is no cause for concern. However, in some instances, it could be. Read through the information below to learn more about canine snoring and when it might be a problem.

dog snoring

Some Snoring is Fine

First, it’s important to recognize that some snoring is completely normal in dogs and isn’t a cause for concern. If your dog’s snoring is only happening every now and then, and if their breathing is rhythmic and natural while sleeping, then they are probably just very deeply asleep!

On the other hand, if snoring occurs suddenly when it never has before, or if your dog shows any signs of distress or symptoms of illness at the same time, then you should see your veterinarian.

Does Your Dog Sleep on Their Back?

Back sleeping is one of the most common causes of snoring in dogs. Although puppies and younger adult dogs are more prone to back sleeping than older pets, any dog may end up snoozing on their back now and then. Snoring while back sleeping is normal and shouldn’t worry you.

However, if your dog’s snoring seems to be uneven or their breathing is not quite right when sleeping on their back, then this could indicate sleep apnea. Sleep apnea is very rare in dogs, but it is not impossible for a dog to suffer from this condition.

Allergies and Illness

Allergies may lead to snoring in dogs, just like they do in humans. If you’ve ever had a bad allergy flare-up and found yourself snoring noisily due to your stuffy nose, then you can understand just how this issue might affect your dog, too.

Illnesses such as respiratory infections can cause the same result as well. If your dog is sick with a cold of some type, they may have a stuffy head that leads to snoring while asleep. The good news is that this snoring won’t last forever. You should, however, take your dog to the vet if they are sick.

Dental Issues

Dental issues may periodically lead to issues with the nasal passageways in a dog. If your dog has very bad teeth that frequently break or become infected, it is possible that their dental trouble is contributing to the snoring.

Dogs who have dental abscesses are especially prone to snoring when dealing with this problem. Abscesses can burrow into the dog’s nasal passages and cause a wide range of other health problems as well. Keep up with your dog’s dental hygiene and cleanings to prevent or significantly reduce the risk of abscesses in their mouth, gums, and teeth.


Overweight dogs are more likely to snore than those who are a healthy weight. This is because excess weight may build up in and around the throat, which causes airway blockage during sleep. Although dogs are typically not at risk of suffocation from this buildup of fat, they are at risk of snoring—sometimes a lot.

Keep your dog at a healthy weight to reduce this potential cause of snoring. Maintaining a healthy weight for your pet can also help reduce the risk of a variety of other health problems and diseases, and can help them live longer, too.


Finally, your dog’s breed may have something to do with their snoring. It may come as no surprise to you that dogs with very short or “smashed” snouts are a lot more likely to snore than those who have long snouts. Brachycephalic dog breeds like pugs and English bulldogs are some examples of these types of snoring dogs.

Brachycephalic dogs also have other health concerns to keep in mind. If you own a dog like this, it’s important to talk to your vet and get some information about what to expect regarding their health and wellness throughout their life.

Talk to Your Vet About Your Dog’s Snoring

With the help of this information, you should have a better idea of when your dog’s snoring is an issue and when it’s perfectly normal. You should also understand more about risk factors your dog may have that are associated with excessive snoring, too.

If you have any further questions or concerns about your pet’s health and wellness, be sure to talk to your vet for more information. Your Heart + Paw vet can help guide you toward the best solutions and management for your dog’s snoring and can help you determine whether it’s a sign of a serious problem as well. Use the online form to book an appointment at any of our locations!

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Heart + Paw was founded in 2018 by Chief Veterinary Officer Dr. George Melillo, who currently serves the Mid-Atlantic area. Heart + Paw offers a combination of veterinary care, pet grooming, and dog daycare to help be a resource in your pet parenthood journey.

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