Vet Procedures That Might Help Your Brachycephalic Dog

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Brachycephalic dogs, such as pugs and bulldogs, can struggle with respiratory or eating problems due to their short and often malformed airways. Daily practices like keeping your dog in a cool area and helping them maintain a healthy weight can go a long way towards easing their symptoms. But sometimes, a brachycephalic dog needs more in-depth care. Here are some of the key procedures vets often recommend for brachycephalic dogs.

Nostril Enlargement

Some dogs with a brachycephalic respiratory tract have nostrils that are too small to take in enough air. Or, they may have abnormal tissue inside their nostrils that takes up too much space and restricts the airway. In either of these cases, the vet can perform what's known as a nostril enlargement surgery. Usually, they'll just remove a triangle of tissue from the edge of each nostril, extending the nostril closer to the center or septum of the nose. This procedure does not take long, and most dogs heal within a week or two. The results are immediate; the wider nostrils will allow the dog to take in more air with each breath.

Palate Shortening

Brachycephalic dogs often have soft palates that are too long. The palate extends too far back into the sinuses, which restricts the amount of air that the dog is able to take in. A palate shortening procedure can remove the excess tissue. This is a more involved procedure than a nostril enlargement. Your dog will need to stick to a soft or liquid diet for a few days afterward, and there can be some uncomfortable swelling. As such, most dogs need to stay in the vet hospital for a day or two after palate shortening. However, the procedure can be life changing for brachycephalic dogs with long palates.

Dental Surgery

It's really common for brachycephalic dogs to have misaligned teeth. If this is severe enough to interfere with their ability to eat and chew, then your vet may recommend dental surgery. Generally, the vet will remove any teeth that are poorly aligned, which leaves more space in the mouth for the other teeth. The dog is generally better off with fewer, well-placed teeth than with the extra, misaligned teeth.

If you have a brachycephalic dog, make sure you visit a veterinarian in your area and have them look your dog over carefully. If your dog ever has a hard time catching their breath or eating, they might need one or more of the procedures listed above.

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From Vaccines to Viruses A vet is someone who is there for your pet from their early years until their last years. When your pet is young, a vet can give them the vaccines they need for disease prevention as they become acquainted with the world. As your pet ages, your vet can monitor them for the conditions that often come with old age, such as arthritis and cancer. Vets care about their patients. We hope you will learn more about this care as you browse the content on this blog. We do our best to offer well-researched and helpful information for pet owners like you.