Can dogs take a decongestant? Get Your Pet Thinking

How Can You Tell If Your Dog’s Nose Is Congested?

Some ailments are easy to recognize in dogs, but others are less obvious.

Intestinal issues, for example, are pretty apparent, but it can be hard to tell if your dog has a headache.

Nasal congestion lies somewhere in between the extremes, as there are a few signs that can indicate your dog is suffering from a stuffy snout, but you won’t see your pup walking around trying to blow his nose.

Some of the symptoms that suggest your dog is suffering from a stuffy nose include:

  • Sneezing
  • Swelling around the nose or muzzle
  • Discharge
  • Unusual breathing sounds
  • Loss of appetite
  • Lethargy
  • Depression
  • Can dogs take a decongestant?

    Do You Need to Take Your Dog to the Vet for a Stuffy Nose?

    In many cases, simple things like a runny nose or a stuffy nose are not troubling enough to warrant a trip to the vet. This is especially true if the congestion resolves on its own within 24 hours or so and your dog appears healthy in most other ways (meaning that he’s not displaying any other respiratory symptoms).

    However, if the congestion lasts for more than a couple of days, only seems to affect one nostril, or if it is accompanied by a fever or green nasal discharge, you should take your dog in for an examination.

    Additionally, if you note any neurological problems – holding the head in unusual positions, loss of balance, uncoordinated movements – you’ll want to take your dog in promptly.

    Don’t have easy access to a vet? You may want to consider getting help from JustAnswer — a service that provides instant virtual-chat access to a certified vet online.

    You can discuss the issue with them, and even share video or photos if need be. The online vet can help you determine what your next steps should be.

    While talking with your own vet — who understands the ins and outs of your dog’s history — is probably ideal, JustAnswer is a good backup option.

    Why Do Dogs Get Stuffy Noses?

    Dogs suffer from stuffy noses for a variety of reasons, including several which can cause similar symptoms in humans.

    Some of the most common causes of nasal congestion in dogs include:

  • Head colds (a viral infection)
  • An environmental or seasonal allergy
  • A bacterial infection
  • A fungal infection
  • A foreign body in the nose
  • Less frequently, dogs may suffer from congestion as a side effect of heart disease. There are also a few ailments that seem to afflict some breeds more than others.

    For example, lymphocytic-plasmacytic rhinitis – a condition which causes nasal discharge and irritation – most commonly afflicts dachshunds.

    How to Relieve a Dog’s Stuffy Nose