Skip to Content

7 Reasons Why Your Dog Is Snoring While Awake

Why Is My Dog Snoring While Awake

Your pooch doesn’t fail to surprise you…

This time, they did something that weirded you out. 

Then, it turned into a creeping concern…

Who wouldn’t feel that way when you’ve just seen your dog snore while they’re awake?

I’ll tell you what’s up with that.

Keep reading to discover:

  • If you should be worried if your dog snores.
  • 7 reasons why your dog is snoring while awake.
  • The reason why your dog is making weird breathing noises.
  • 15 brachycephalic dog breeds that tend to snore while they’re awake.
  • And many more…

Why is my dog snoring while awake?

Your dog is snoring while awake because they’re a brachycephalic dog breed. That means their facial structure is causing it. Sometimes it’s due to foreign bodies in the nose, allergic reaction, or obesity. Other times, it’s because of tracheal collapse, laryngeal paralysis, or nasal tumors.

7 reasons why your dog is snoring while awake

#1: Due to their face structure

Some dog breeds belong to the brachycephalic group…

According to AKC, that term comes from 2 Greek words. Those words are “short” and head.”

So, joining that together creates the term “short head.”

Now, these canines are named that way because of their short snout. Moreover, their faces also appear flat.

So, see if your pup appears on this list of 15 brachycephalic dog breeds:

  • Pugs.
  • Boxers.
  • Bulldogs.
  • Shih Tzus.
  • Pekingese.
  • Bullmastiffs.
  • Chihuahuas.
  • Lhasa Apsos.
  • Cane Corsos.
  • Chow Chows.
  • Affenpinschers.
  • Boston Terriers.
  • French Bulldogs.
  • English Toy Spaniels.
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniel.

If you spot your pooch on that list, then you shouldn’t be surprised…

Yep, you shouldn’t be shocked when your pooch suddenly snores while they’re awake.

You see, dogs with that face structure have narrow nostrils. With that, their airways are smaller.

And with their slim airways, they’re bound to make sounds from time to time.

Such a sound is a sign of their struggle to breathe properly.

Moreover, these canines are more prone to reverse sneezing

Plus, they’re less likely to hold their breath underwater.

More importantly, vets say that these dogs are prone to a condition…

It’s called brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome (BOAS). 

It’s a consequence of their facial structure.

With that, they’ll have difficulty breathing, which is called dyspnea.

Then, these dogs also breathe noisily. And that’s called stertor

What’s that?

Research describes stertor as an abnormal low-pitched sound. Such indicates an obstructive airway. 

In your brachycephalic pooch, stertor is the name for the snoring sound they make.

Continue reading: 11 Surprising Reasons Why Your Dog Snorts Like A Pig

#2: They’re having an allergic reaction

Your Dog Is Snoring While Awake Because They're Having An Allergic Reaction

Imagine this:

You and your pupper are done with today’s daily walk…

And this one’s extra delightful.

That’s because it’s finally sunny.

With that, your pooch ran around the grass. They also had fun when they lay in the sun.

Most of all, they satisfied their curiosity by sniffing flowers.

So after settling down at home, that’s where it started…

Your pooch begins to snore while they’re awake.

“What’s going on with you?”

Oh, they might be having an allergic reaction.

It could be from the pollens that they sniffed from the flowers. And some dogs are even allergic to grass.

If not that, then they must’ve been hit by some kind of smoke. 

Other times, it might be due to exposure to some chemicals.

So, wanna confirm if this is the case?

VCA Hospitals say these are more signs of an allergic reaction:

Overall, the allergic reaction causes congestion in your dog’s nose. And that’s what leads to a sound like snoring.

You might also want to know: My Dog Is Constantly Scratching And Biting Himself

#3: Tracheal collapse

On a random day, your pooch has suddenly begun to snore…

But, the catch is that…

They’re awake while they do!

Now, your pooch isn’t a brachycephalic canine.

Like this dog who’s caught on video. They’re snoring while awake:

Also, you’re sure that they’re not experiencing any allergies.

If that’s the case, consider looking at another medical issue that might cause it…

And it’s none other than tracheal collapse.

What’s that?

First of all, the trachea is also known as the windpipe. It’s the tube structure that connects the throat to the lungs.

Now, small rings of cartilage protect that tube. That’s called the tracheal wall.

So, in this condition, those walls lose their strength.

And according to VCA Hospitals, tracheal collapse makes it hard for your dog to breathe.

That’s because of the struggle to get air to the lungs.

So the MSD Vet Manual says dogs affected by this show the following:

Those are what’s happening behind your dog’s sudden snoring habit when they’re awake.

Moreover, research says this condition is common among miniature and toy breed dogs. Plus, it’s also prevalent in middle-aged canines.

But what causes it?

The same manual says that the cause of some can be unknown.

However, if your pooch is a leash-puller when you walk them…


Then, their collar will push on their neck. Such can contribute to the development of tracheal collapse.

Reading tip: Can A Dog Wear A Collar And A Harness? 3 Dangers

#4: Laryngeal paralysis

Laryngeal Paralysis

For the previous reason, the windpipe is the one involved…

This time, it’s your dog’s voice box…. 

Did you know? A dog’s voice box can be noticeable. It’s what you might assume as your canine’s adam’s apple.

That aside, it might be causing your dog to snore while they’re awake.

And the condition behind it might be laryngeal paralysis.

Here’s how the MSD Vet Manual describes it:

A condition where larynx cartilages don’t normally open and close during breathing.

With that, it causes the following:

  • Vomiting.
  • Dry cough.
  • Regurgitation.
  • Noisy breathing.
  • Changes in their voice.
  • Difficulty in breathing, especially during activities.

Warning: As mentioned, this condition causes a shortage of breath.

And if such gets worse over time, it can lead to your dog collapsing.

So if you notice any signs of this condition, bring them to the vet ASAP.

#5: Foreign objects

You know to yourself that your pooch is a healthy pupper…

And yet, they’ve been snoring while they’re awake.


I think you should sit ’em down, grab a flashlight, and check their nose…


That’s because there might be something lodged in their nasal passages.

A foreign object might be stuck somewhere in their nose. It can be:

  • Grass.
  • Foxtails.
  • Cotton balls.
  • Sticks or twigs.
  • Pieces of a chewed-up toy or fabric.

And that obstruction has been causing your pup to breathe noisily.

Did you know? This isn’t a rare occurrence in dogs.

This study tells us that nasal foreign bodies are common in dogs. 

Plus, they even have data that says most objects get stuck on the right nasal cavity. 

That’s because only 42.9% of the subject dogs have something jabbed on the left side of their nose.

Moreover, you’ll also notice other signs like sneezing.

Read also: 9 Odd Reasons Why Your Dog Sneezes In The Morning + 5 Tips

#6: Nasal tumors

This time, there’s still an obstruction on your dog’s nose…

So, you check…

But you can’t spot anything stuck. 

What could be it?

If this is the case, then a suspect could be nasal tumors.

PetMD says it’s caused by abnormal cell production on the nasal linings.

With that, tumors begin to grow. 

And when they do, they make breathing difficult for Fido.

That’s what causes your pup to snore while they’re awake.

Now, research says the most common cause of this is nasal adenocarcinoma.

What’s that?

It’s just another name for nose cancer.

And in their data of 112 dogs, 75.9% are affected by the condition.

So, here are other signs of the condition:

  • Seizures.
  • Sneezing.
  • Nasal discharge.
  • Lack of appetite.
  • Pain in the nose.

#7: Obesity

So Fido’s snoring while they’re awake, huh?

Take a look at them the next time they do it again…

Are they looking a little chubby?

If they do, then that must be it…

You see, obesity can cause your pup to breathe noisily. And that includes snoring while awake.

But wait…

Don’t scoff it off…

That’s because this might be a sign that you must put Fido on a diet.

Yep, the slimming journey should start now.

And doing so won’t only reduce instances like this…

Keeping your dog at their ideal weight can make them more healthy. With that, their longevity will be ensured.

How so?

Unfortunately, obesity can contribute to many health problems. Some examples are:

  • Arthritis.
  • Diabetes.
  • Heart diseases.

Wanna start maintaining Fido’s weight but don’t know where to start?

This weight chart from AKC will surely help you.

People also ask:

Should I worry if my dog snores?

You should worry if your dog snores if they’re not usually doing it. But if they’ve always been a snorer, then don’t be so troubled.

Say that your dog suddenly snores out of nowhere… 

If that’s the case, your concern is understandable.

Now, your dog could have something stuck in their nose. If not, it could be one of these conditions:

  • Allergies.
  • Nasal tumors.
  • Tracheal collapse.
  • Laryngeal paralysis.

Those conditions cause your dog to snore suddenly. With that, you must have them checked by the vet immediately.

And as for the less concerning reasons, those are:

  • Obesity.
  • Facial structure.

Such will make your dog a frequent snorer. And if you wish to reduce it, you can also consult their vet.

Why is my dog making weird breathing noises?

Your dog is making weird breathing noises because there’s an issue with their nasal airways. It can simply be due to their facial structure or obesity. But other times, it can be caused by an underlying medical condition.

Brachycephalic dogs have short snouts and heads. That facial structure makes them breathe loudly.

Moreover, obese canines will also have trouble in respiration. Thus resulting in noisy breaths.

Then, allergic reactions can also lead to difficulty breathing.

However, medical conditions could also cause your pooch to make weird breathing noises. Those are:

  • Nose cancer.
  • Tracheal collapse.
  • Laryngeal paralysis.

Warning: It’s best to have your dog checked by a vet once they start breathing weirdly. That’s because a medical issue might be behind it.