Saturday, May 16, 2009

Reverse Sneezing

I am not sure where Julie got this information from, but I am re-posting it here...

"The exact reasons for these episodes are unknown but may be related to allergies, nasal irritants or nasal inflammation. A reverse sneeze may look disturbing - many people fear that their dog is not breathing during these episodes - but it is not a harmful condition and there are no ill effects.

Reverse sneezing attacks are generally quite brief and not life threatening. An episode can be stopped if the dog is stimulated to swallow by either massaging the throat or briefly pinching off the nasal openings. Some dogs have reverse sneezing episodes so frequently that various medications may be needed to reduce the number of episodes.

Reverse sneeze syndrome is characterized by a series of rapid, loud, forced inhalations through the nostrils, lasting anywhere from 10 seconds to 2 minutes. Attacks occur on a sporadic, unpredictable basis. Dogs usually have the head extended forward and stand still during the episode with elbows turned out and sometimes with the back arched. Affected dogs appear completely normal before and after the attack. There is no loss of consciousness or collapse, though some times the appearance of the dog and the noise is upsetting to owners.

Many dogs have these attacks throughout their lives. The exact cause of reverse sneezing is unknown, but it may be associated with sinusitis, incomplete closure of naso-pharynx, and other upper respiratory disorders. Whatever, the cause, the condition is usually not serious.

Treatment is not necessary when episodes occur infrequently or on a random basis. To help your dog you may wish to try any of the following ideas: holding off both nostrils so the dog takes a breath through the mouth, blowing in the nose, or massaging the throat. All of these techniques are designed to stimulate a swallow reflex, which will help to stop the episode."

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