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208 Breeds, 422 Health Conditions  |  Find a Vet

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Reverse Sneezing (Laryngospasm)

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Condition Overview

This uncommon condition can be alarming because it sounds as if the dog can't catch their breath. Reverse sneezing is commonly seen in Corgis and Beagles, but an attack can happen in any breed.

Symptoms

During an attack, the dog produces a loud snorting noise caused by violent attempts to draw in air. This may occur several times in succession. After the attack the dog appears completely normal.

Causes

Reverse sneezing is believed to be caused by a temporary spasm of the muscles of the larynx, possibly the result of a drop of mucus that falls on the vocal cords from the soft palate.

Diagnosis

Diagnosis is made by examining symptoms.

Treatment

The attack can be stopped by making the dog swallow. This is accomplished by massaging the front of the neck in the region of the neck just below the jaw. Alternatively, place your hand over the dog's nostrils for an instant.

If the attack does not stop and the dog collapses, suspect a foreign body in the larynx.

Prevention

There is no prevention for this condition.

Support

Please contact your veterinarian if you have questions regarding this condition.

Show Sources & Contributors +

Sources

Dog Owners Home Veterinary Handbook

Publisher: Wiley Publishing, 2007

Website: http://www.wiley.com/WileyCDA/

Authors: Debra M. Eldredge, Liisa D. Carlson, Delbert G. Carlson, James M. Giffen MD

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