Can anxiety cause reverse sneezing in dogs?

Overexcitement can sometimes prompt reverse sneezing, so address any anxiety or fear your pet may be facing and keep them focused on enrichment toys and activities. Massage your pet’s throat to get them to swallow, which helps stop the episode.

You are conducting yourself normally when your dog suddenly makes an odd, startling, and utterly bizarre noise by honking or snorting wheezily. When you rush to help your pet, you find that they are unharmed and standing there as if nothing had happened. But what happened? Do you call us or put everything on hold to bring your pet in as soon as possible?

Your pet most likely just went through paroxysmal respiration, also known as “reverse sneezing,” which is what happened. Although hearing a reverse sneeze can be alarming, a dog or cat frequently does it on a regular basis.

What Causes Reverse Sneezing in Dogs?

Similar to how humans cough or sneeze normally, dogs reverse sneeze to get rid of an irritant.

Regular sneezing aids in clearing the nasal cavity of an irritant. Coughing helps expel irritants located further down in the trachea. The body uses a reverse sneeze to expel an irritant from a little bit lower down, at the nasopharynx (region by the soft palate).

The following are some potential soft palate irritation triggers that could cause reverse sneezing:

  • Allergies
  • Household products (perfume, cleaning products, air fresheners)
  • Pulling on the leash while attached to a collar
  • Overexcitement
  • Exercise intolerance
  • Objects in the throat area (such as a foreign body or a mass)
  • Nasal mites
  • Elongated soft palate (common in brachycephalic breeds, or breeds with shortened snouts)
  • Eating/drinking
  • Which Dogs Are Susceptible To Reverse Sneezing?

    Many dogs experience reverse sneezing, but small dogs and breeds with flat faces, such as Pugs, Bulldogs, and Boxers, are more likely to experience it. One explanation put forth is that smaller breeds may have a smaller windpipe and throat. Additionally, breeds with flat faces (known as brachycephalic) have longer soft palates. They can suck the palate back into the throat. They make a guttural, raspy sound when air passes through their palates, if you’ve ever heard them breathe.

    Is reverse sneezing harmful for dogs?

    The reverse sneeze is typically not cause for alarm in dogs. Usually, the sneezing lasts for less than a minute, and the dogs resume their activities after that. It has no negative effects on health, and your dog will probably move on as if nothing happened.

    However, there are some symptoms that could indicate a underlying medical condition. It’s always a good idea to have your dog checked out by your veterinarian if reverse sneezing has suddenly developed in order to get the proper diagnosis.

    The following signs of conditions like asthma, heart disease, and tracheal collapse can also be present:

  • Labored breathing
  • Ongoing, consistent cough
  • Frequent wheezing
  • Panting without exercise
  • Open-mouthed breathing
  • Lethargy
  • Lack of interest in exercise
  • Pale or blue gums
  • If your dog exhibits any of the aforementioned symptoms, schedule an appointment with your veterinarian right away to have your dog checked out.


    Why has my dog suddenly started reverse sneezing?

    An episode of reverse sneezing can be brought on by any irritation to the nose, sinuses, or back of the throat. Nasal mites, secretions, foreign objects like seeds, pollen, or grasses, allergies, smoke, odors, masses, or an extended soft palate can all be triggers.

    Can dogs sneeze from anxiety?

    Breathing and speaking: Coughing and/or sneezing: Similar to yawning, blinking, and panting, these bodily functions are the body’s way of letting out pent-up stress or confusion in an unfamiliar situation.

    How can I calm my dog from reverse sneezing?

    What Should I Do If My Dog Reverse Sneezes? A typical treatment is to briefly close the dog’s nostrils and gently rub his throat to calm him. Lightly blowing in his face may also help. The dog should swallow a few times as a result, which will typically stop the spasm of the reverse sneeze.