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Help! My Dog Won't Stop Sneezing

May 1, 2021

Does your dog sneeze a lot? Most often, Fido sneezes for the same reasons we do: because small particles of dust, dirt, grass, or other materials got into his nose. Our canine buddies do use their noses to explore the world, after all. But if your dog sneezes frequently, or won’t stop sneezing, there may be something more going on.

Here are some of the most common reasons that dogs sneeze:

Play Sneezing

Our furry pals often sneeze when they’re playing? Whether your pup is playing with another canine or with a human, you’ll probably see him sneeze a few times. Experts believe this is Fido’s rather adorable way of showing other dogs that his playful antics are good-natured, rather than threatening. Watch out for the play-sneeze the next time your pooch gets riled up!


Pups also sneeze because of allergies. Environmental allergens are the usual culprit. Things like pollen, mold, dander, dust and dust mites can cause symptoms like a runny nose, watery eyes, and—you guessed it—excessive sneezing. Food allergies can even cause sneezing! Fido could be reacting to a protein source, such as chicken, or other things, like soy or dairy, in his diet. 

If you think your dog might be suffering from allergies, call your vet. Allergy medication might be necessary for your pup to feel better.

Brachycephalic Airway Obstruction Syndrome (BAOS)

Brachycephalic dogs, which are those pups with squashed faces and bulging eyes, like the Pekingese, French and English Bulldog, boxers, pugs, and the Boston terrier, also tend to be sneezy. These guys are prone to breathing trouble, thanks to their narrow nasal passages and unique airway structures. Symptoms of Brachycephalic Airway Obstruction Syndrome include wheezing, snorting, and–you guessed it–sneezing. If you have a Brachycephalic dog, ask your vet what you can do to keep him comfortable.

Reverse Sneezing

Dogs also “reverse sneeze” on occasion. This happens when a dog snorts air into their nose quickly, which sounds almost like a sneeze. It can be alarming, but it’s perfectly normal and nothing to worry about. With most dogs, the biggest danger here would be if Fido were to bonk his head on something. It’s most common in smaller dogs, including Brachycephalic breeds.

Medical Issues

Medical problems, like kennel cough, respiratory infections, nasal mites, and much more, could cause Fido’s sneezing. If you can’t determine another cause of your dog’s behavior, set up an appointment with your vet clinic. 

Contact your local vet clinic for more information on your dog’s sneezing. 

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