Dogs frequently pant, especially when they’re hot, ecstatic, or active. But excessive panting is a different story and could indicate that your dog is suffering from a chronic health condition, is dangerously hot, or has recently been through a traumatic event.
Here are the answers to three crucial queries any dog owner has to be aware of:
- What are the typical reasons for dogs’ excessive panting?
- How can I deal with them?
- When should I take my pet to the vet?
Why does my dog pant while lying down?
Panting might not be related to body temperature. When they feel fear, worry, or tension, many dogs may pant. Examples include driving, watching fireworks, feeling lonely, going to the vet, and other stressful situations. To assist you identify whether your dog is displaying signs of fear or any other sort of distress, pay attention to your dog’s body language. You can reduce these occurrences by identifying the source of your dog’s fear or anxiety. The best course of action is to remove your dog from the situation as quickly as you can if panting appears to be a sign of stress, worry, or fear.
Why is my dog sweating so much?
To control their body temperature, dogs pant. Dogs pant to circulate cool air through their bodies and to evaporatively remove moisture from the mouth and upper respiratory tract because, unlike humans, they are unable to control their body temperature through sweat.
The great majority of the time, a dog panting is a typical indication that it is hot, eager, or simply taking a break from exercise. Check out our veterinarian’s advice on how to keep your dog cool if you’re concerned that your dog is panting because he’s too hot and want to calm him down.
How can you stop a dog from panting uncontrollably?
Pet owners are aware that a dog’s panting is typical behavior. Similar to how regular dogs may breathe heavily when they are exhausted after exercise. Dog panting also lowers body temperature and prevents heat exhaustion and hyperthermia. Dogs pant a lot during hot days because of this. However, unusual panting may be a sign of anything wrong. Think about some methods for reducing excessive panting and soothing your dog.
- Remain close to the dog’s side. When dogs are anxious, they frequently pant; keeping you nearby can help them stay calm.
- 2. Create a private sanctuary for the dog. Allowing the dog to cool off in its own space is sometimes the best method to handle anxious panting. A white noise machine may be functioning in a dimly lit room in this scenario. It could also be the dog’s crate, which should have blankets with comforting scents inside.
- 3. Give the dog a wrap that reduces anxiety. These wraps are applied similarly to swaddling a baby. They may calm an anxious dog because they give the impression of safety and security.
- 4. Give your dog pheromones that are calming. Pheromones, especially those emitted by female dogs while they are feeding their pups, have a calming effect on many dogs. Pet retailers offer these pheromones in bottles.
- 5. Give nutrients to your dog. A supplement that contains L-theanine, valerian, chamomile, and milk proteins should be discussed with your veterinarian. Cortisol levels and general stress can be reduced by these.
When is dog panting a cause for concern?
If any of the following apply, contact your veterinarian right away: The panting of your dog starts abruptly. You suspect your dog might be hurt. The panting is severe and continuous.
If your dog is hot
Dogs can only truly dissipate heat through panting because they do not sweat as effectively as people do. A heavy coat and a propensity to keep moving while overheated are not helpful. Up until their body temperature returns to normal, your dog will pant to release heat.
Excessive panting in a hot climate could be an indication of heatstroke. Other symptoms could include drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, and restlessness. Stop doing anything, go somewhere cool and shaded, and give your dog some water. Shower them if you can with cool water, not cold. If you believe your dog may be suffering from heatstroke, always call your veterinarian for guidance. Without intervention, it might be lethal in a hurry.
If your dog is anxious
Fear and anxiety can naturally cause people to pant. Your pet might start panting after going to the vet, experiencing a storm, or going through another stressful situation.
Even though this is a perfectly reasonable response, it shows that the person is having trouble dealing with the circumstance. A trip to the veterinarian is an uncommon occurrence (let’s hope), and your pet should cease panting afterward. In the long run, calming your pet’s worries may be achieved by using treats and fusses to create positive associations with the area and its inhabitants.
Regularly occurring episodes of anxiety in settings like the house or on walks may call for treatment or behavior adjustment. Natural items, such as pheromone collars and plugins, thunder shirts, or anti-anxiety (anti-stress) drugs, may help people relax. If you believe your pet may be experiencing stress or anxiety, please consult your veterinarian for guidance.
If your dog is exercising
When they previously wouldn’t have done so, your pet panting with little exercise may be a symptom. Exercise intolerance is what we call it. Even though there might be a straightforward explanation for this, it might also be a symptom of something more serious, so if you find this in your pet, it’s always worth having them checked out by a veterinarian.
Dogs of various breeds and even specific members of breeds may pant more or less frequently than others. You must be aware of your dog’s “normal” in order to spot tiny variations. Due to heat, exertion, fear, and excitement, animals who are older and obese are more likely to pant.
Your pet’s weight can be discussed, and if necessary, your vet team can assist with a weight loss program. Bulldogs, pugs, and other short-nosed breeds (brachycephalics) are particularly prone to heatstroke. If they are nervous or overworked, they may pant and struggle harder. It is always better to have your dog’s breathing examined if you are concerned.
Are there any illnesses that can cause my dog to pant?
It’s crucial to make the distinction between normal panting and respiratory distress, which is a very dangerous condition. In order to breathe more easily when experiencing respiratory distress, your dog may choose to stand with their elbows out and their neck stretched.
They might be breathing more forcefully and more quickly. Their lips may pull back, their nostrils may flare, and their gums may seem dark, even purple. It is crucial that you take your pet in right away if they exhibit this breathing pattern. It can be a symptom of a severe lung or cardiac condition.
Panting due to pain
Excessive panting might also result from pain. There are several potential causes of pain, some of which are more visible than others. An elderly animal may pant excessively if it is in pain, such as from joint illness. Depending on the origin of the pain, there are frequently additional symptoms. Your dog can be examined by your veterinarian to check for any signs of pain that might be the cause of panting, to conduct additional research, or, if necessary, to recommend a trial of pain medication.
Fevers as a cause
Your pet may pant excessively to stay cool if they have a fever. Your veterinarian will take your pet’s temperature and may decide to run additional tests to ascertain the cause or obtain a medical history to see if there are any other symptoms that might help. Depending on the cause, or if the cause is unknown, treating the symptoms.
Increased panting may result from certain hormonal disorders. Cushing’s illness is one of the most typical (hyperadrenocorticism). The sickness typically has more than just panting as a symptom. Dogs frequently drink and urinate more, desire more food, have a thinning coat and frail skin, and look to have a pot belly. Typically, a benign tumor in the pituitary region of the brain or, less frequently, a tumor in the adrenal gland next to the kidney, causes this condition. The usual diagnostic procedures involve blood and urine tests. Panting may also indicate other, more uncommon hormone disorders.
Blood pressure issues
A sign of elevated blood pressure is panting (hypertension). Normal causes of hypertension include diabetes, Cushing’s disease, and renal illness. Typically, these disorders would also cause other symptoms in your dog. Medical treatment for hypertension is available, but underlying reasons must be looked into, identified, managed, and addressed.
Medicines and painkillers
Excessive panting may be brought on by some medications. One of the side effects of prednisolone and other corticosteroids, which are frequently used, is panting. Increased panting may be brought on by a hyperthyroidism medication overdose as well as some sedatives and analgesics like diazepam and opiates.
- You suspect your dog might be hurt.
- The panting is heavy and continuous.
- The tongue or gums of your dog may seem blue, purple, or white. This could indicate that your pet isn’t receiving enough oxygen.
- The panting of your dog begins unexpectedly.
You might also find the following blog entries from VetHelpDirect interesting:
Why does my dog, who is 14 years old, pant so much?
It’s crucial to understand the differences between regular and abnormal panting. A healthy and natural response to deal with the extreme heat, normal panting occurs when your dog’s body temperature is elevated. On the other side, unusual panting may be a sign that your dog needs to have his or her mental or physical needs attended to.
How can you distinguish between the two? Normal panting is restrained and regulated; abnormal panting is unrestrained and uncontrollable. Even when there are no causes, such as excessive heat, it still occurs. Additionally, abnormal panting is rougher and louder. When your dog starts panting unexpectedly or seems to be panting more than normal, there is cause for concern.
What symptoms indicate a dying dog?
There will always be death. As pet owners, we don’t like to think about it all that much, but regrettably, we all have to deal with it at some point. There are many articles on the internet that are intended to assist you comprehend the process of death when it comes to euthanasia, but very few that address the subject of natural death when it comes to our dogs passing. Although natural death does not occur frequently, we at Leesville Animal Hospital believe that pet owners should be prepared for it.
Even though only a small percentage of dogs die from natural causes, if you have an older dog, you might be wondering what to expect if yours is one of the rare ones.
There are some symptoms you should look out for if you are the owner of a dog receiving hospice care since they could indicate that your pet is preparing to pass away. Even while these symptoms might sometimes indicate illness or other changes, when they come simultaneously or in conjunction with a general feeling that your pet is getting ready to pass away, you can nearly always be sure that the end is close. It is always worthwhile to visit your family veterinarian or request that they make a home call if you start to see these symptoms in your dog. Your family veterinarian will be able to confirm your assumptions and assist you in understanding how to put your pet more at ease with the process of dying because they will have grown to know them over the years.
The following are indicators to look out for in an aging dog or an ill dog receiving hospice care:
- Inability to coordinate
- reduced appetite
- not anymore consuming water
- inability to move or losing interest in activities they formerly found enjoyable
- extreme tiredness
- vomit or have accidents
- twitching of muscles
- slowed breathing
- unease about being comfy
- a wish to be alone or to get closer to you (this can depend upon the dog, but will present as being an unusual need or behavior)
- consciousness loss
Some of these indicators will start to appear weeks before your dog dies. Most frequently, these symptoms resemble the following:
- You might observe weight loss, a lack of self-grooming, duller eyes, thirst, and gastrointestinal problems 3 months to 3 weeks before your dog passes away.
- Three weeks prior to your dog’s passing, you might notice: a rise in self-isolation, eye discharge, finicky eating, altered breathing patterns, decreased interest in enjoyable activities, growing weight loss, and fussy eating.
- Your dog may experience excessive weight loss, a distant expression in their eyes, a lack of interest in anything, restlessness or odd stillness, a change in how your dog smells, and a changing disposition in the final few days before they pass away.
Many folks may claim that their cherished family pet clung to life right up until the instant that they let the animal to let go. We can’t help but think of this as an extension of the lifetime of loyalty that our dogs show us. Without the assurance that we won’t be without them and that their task is finished, our pets are unable to move on. We owe it to our pets to provide them with that reassurance, no matter how much it may hurt.
Many people worry that they won’t know a) if their pet has genuinely passed away and b) what to do next when the time comes for their cherished pooches to pass away.
There are several indications that your pet has left their body when they have passed away. The body will completely relax, and your dog will no longer appear rigid; instead, they will “let go,” which is the most obvious indication. As the last breath leaves their lungs, you will observe a slimming of the body, and if their eyes are still open, you may notice a loss of life. You should now check for breathing and a heartbeat. You can be certain that your dog has passed on if there is no longer a heartbeat, no breathing, and these conditions have persisted for 30 minutes.
What should you do if your pet has moved on? If your pet died away with their eyes open, you might decide to gently close them first. Your pet may have lost the ability to regulate their bowels or bladder during their passing, and many pet owners wish to clean up after their pets. To do this, use baby wipes, a damp facecloth, or a moist towel. The most crucial thing at this time, though, may be to take your time and spend the final moments with your pet. Take as much time as necessary to say goodbye.
Once you’ve said your goodbyes, you should phone your vet or, if your vet doesn’t offer home visits, a vet who does. They will be able to attest to the passing of your companion and, if needed, transfer your dog for cremation. It is usually better to have a veterinarian check on your pet before you do so, even if you have permission to bury them on your land. Some pet owners decide to bring their deceased animal to their local veterinarian facility. If you decide to do this, cover your pet in a tidy blanket and phone your veterinarian to let them know you will be there. They will be able to inform you what you need to bring with you and provide you with any additional instructions you may need for your visit.
Your veterinarian can handle the cremation process for you if you decide to do so for your pet. Every veterinary practice works closely with a pet cremation. However, if you would rather, you can make the arrangements and go to the Crematory with your dog. However, if you decide to do this, you must remember that it must be done right afterwards, or else you must ask your veterinarian to preserve your companion’s remains until you can travel the next day.
You can decide whether to have an individual cremation or a communal cremation, in which case your pet would be burned alongside other animals. Even though an individual cremation is more expensive, it is still a private process. You may have decided to keep your pet’s ashes after cremation or to have them strewn near the crematorium. You must decide what is right for you at this moment.
A pet cemetery can be a better option for you if cremation is not the option that feels right to you but you are not allowed to bury your pet on your property because of municipal regulations. Every state has a pet cemetery, and each cemetery has its unique procedures for burying animals.