Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome in Dogs: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments

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Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome in dogs is a medical condition that involves a series of abnormal upper airway conditions that affect brachycephalic dogs.

You can usually recognize brachycephalic dogs by their short noses and flat faces. Common brachycephalic breeds include pugs, chihuahuas, and pekingese dogs.

If you see any signs that your dog might have breathing problems, then you should consult your veterinarian for proper diagnosis and treatment. Here’s what you need to know about the symptoms, causes, and treatments for brachycephalic airway syndrome in dogs.

Symptoms of Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome in Dogs

Brachycephalic airway syndrome in dogs can cause a range of symptoms. Some of the more common symptoms include:

  • very rapid breathing
  • Snore a lot
  • Problems related to physical activity
  • High body temperature
  • To cough
  • Passing out or collapsing during exercise
  • Difficulties eating and drinking

Causes of Brachycephalic Airway Syndrome in Dogs

Sad dog lying at the park

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The cause of brachycephalic airway syndrome is mainly due to the dog head shape. Short-nosed, flat-faced dog breeds that seem to suffer the most from this disease include:

  • Chihuahua
  • Pug
  • Boxer
  • Bull Mastiff
  • Pekingese
  • Lhasa Apso
  • boston terrier
  • french bulldog
  • english bulldog
  • Shih Tzu

Beyond specific breeds, other factors that may increase a dog’s risk of developing this disease also include obesity and allergies.

Veterinary treatments

If you suspect your dog has brachycephalic airway syndrome, your veterinarian will want to perform a full exam and ask about your dog’s breeding history. In most suspected cases, veterinarians can use a fiberoptic scope to examine the trachea and larynx.

When it comes to treatment, the precise course of action will depend on the symptoms and the underlying cause. In some cases, veterinarians recommend oxygen assistance and use surgical procedures to correct airway problems.

In general, dogs with this condition should try to avoid hot, humid weather and ensure they are not medically obese.

Has your dog developed brachycephalic airway syndrome? How do you keep your dog comfortable and breathing normally? Tell us all about it in the comments below.