Goose Honk

This morning my pug came in from outside with a horrible honking noise. He's ok one minute the the next he is honking away, almost like he's struggling to breath. What is this and what should we do???


RosienMikeysMom (about 9 years ago)

it sounds like your pug had what is called "reverse sneezing". it is very common and unless it happens often, is nothing to worry about. sometimes, it is just caused by allergens, sometimes it just sounds worse than it is. some people say if you blow in their face, they will stop. i have a tendency to just rub their chest until they stop. there is supposedly a pressure point right between their eyes above their little nose that if you put light pressure there, it will stop sooner. i have tried that and it seemed to stop quicker. i have also heard that if you try and open their mouths, so they can breathe from their mouth that will help too. what ever you choose to do, the reverse sneeze doesn't hurt them. you can google "reverse sneezing in dogs" to find out more about it and put your mind at ease.

KatB (about 9 years ago)

All dogs do reverse sneeze. My Sulynn just got over a bad upper resp. infection. She did this over and over again. I also think sometimes dogs do this to try to clear something out of their nose. I notice with sue, she would suck in over and over and then one big blow. Just somthing I noticed. I have also heard that putting two fingers over the nose holes helps. Also if this wasn't reverse sneezeing maybe she had eaten some grass or something and was stuck in throat. That usually sounds like honking or hacking. Hope that helps.

jason2009 (over 8 years ago)

Honking is actually serious, even if a little snorting is normal. Attacks of loud honking is indicative of a blockage of airflow through the windpipe, either caused by an elongated soft palate or tracheal collapse. Although this may not kill the dog, not being able to breath is scary for the dog and causes incremental damage to the windpipe over time, finally resulting in tracheal collapse, which is fatal if not treated. Your vet has remedies that can help prevent this, up to and including surgery to correct the elongated soft palate and otherwise open up the windpipe.

From : "Pugs have a delicate windpipe that can collapse easily. Breathing through a collapsed windpipe sounds harsher than normal 'pug' breathing and has been compared to a honking goose. The condition will worsen when your pug is straining on the leash, drinking water, eating, under stress, or excited. The condition is serious but can usually be successfully treated."

and : "As this irritation increases and the dog continues to struggle trying to breathe, eat and drink the muscles and ligaments that control and hold the larynx begin to stretch. As these muscles stretch the larynx begins to collapse in on itself, eventually leading to complete obstruction of the airway. This condition can be life threatening as the more the dog panics and tries to breathe; the more pressure will be put on the larynx, further hastening the collapse."

ImOnTheStereo (over 8 years ago)

Elongated soft palate usually doesn't present as a honking noise; it sounds more like a mucousy, inability to get air in, kind of like a bulldog breathing. A goose-honking sound is the number-one characteristic of kennel cough.

As a side note, "larpar," or laryngeal paralysis, usually only occurs in older, larger-breed dogs.

RedRoss9 (over 8 years ago)

When Molly or Stan start an attack of reverse sneezing, I try to startle them by blowing really hard into their face.  It surprises them and seems to stop the attack. 

nicky927 (over 8 years ago)

My dog had kennel cough and it didn't sound like a "goose honk" but rather coughing like us humans do, or almost like trying to get something out of her throat. But, she has had a reverse sneeze attack and it does sound like a "honking" noise. I've tried blowing in Sophie's face, and it doesn't really work for her. I also tried opening up her mouth, and that seems to help. Also calmly talking to her helped since she seems to panic when it happens.