In general, a puppy is considered to be breathing too fast when its breathing rate increases to, or exceeds 30 breaths per minute.
Determining whether or not your puppy is breathing too fast can’t be achieved without first establishing what the normal breathing rate should be.
Puppy dogs are typically expected to breathe at a rate of between 15 to 40 breaths per minute. While adult dogs, having mastered and developed their breathing pattern, normally breathe at a slower rate of between 10 to 30 breaths per minute.
However, for some reason or the other, your puppy’s breathing can be significantly higher than what is considered to be the acceptable rate, and this is down to a number of reasons.
Why Is My Puppy Breathing Too Fast?
Some of the factors commonly responsible for abnormally fast puppy breathing include:
Puppies that have spent a considerable amount of time under unbearably hot weather conditions typically tend to breathe too fast, and this is in a bid to regulate their body temperatures.
Panting is a puppy’s natural alternative method of circulating cool air round its body when it is overheating. And generally, the faster the breathing, the hotter the puppy is feeling.
Puppies are big bundles of energy, and will continue to run and play around as long as you allow them. And once your pup decides to take a break from all the running around, you can typically observe it breathing fast in a bid to calm its body down and catch its breath.
Most, if not all puppies experience fear and anxiety when they’re separated from their mothers and they arrive at their new homes. And this is when we typically have one of the most common instances where a puppy is found to be breathing too fast.
Additionally, puppies also tend to breathe too fast when they encounter other stressful situations such as going on a car ride for the very first time, or when they’re in the presence of a fear-inducing character or object.
Puppies also tend to breathe fast while sleeping, and this is largely due to a phenomenon known as the Rapid Eye Movement (REM) stage, a period in which sleeping puppies typically have vivid dreams.
During this REM stage, a puppy’s brain and body needs a high supply of oxygen and energy, and the pooch will typically breathe faster to meet the demand.
Fortunately, most puppies will breathe faster while they’re asleep, and return back to normal once they’re awake; Hence, this is not something you need to worry about too much.
Medical Issues Responsible For Rapid Puppy Breathing
Similarly, your puppy breathing too fast can be due to an underlying medical condition, and some of the most common culprits include:
The facial anatomy of some dogs is such that they have pushed-in faces with short snouts, and the implication of this is that such dogs typically have narrower airways.
Consequently, when such brachycephalic puppies over-exert themselves, especially during physical activities, they typically experience breathing difficulties, which leads to faster breathing in a bid to regulate their body functions.
Tachypnea in puppies is a medical condition characterised by a faster rate of breathing, and it has several causes, some of which include:
- Nostril infections
- Windpipe diseases (swelling, collapse and paralysis)
- Diseases of the lung, such as cancer, clots, parasites, and pneumonia
- Abdominal diseases, such as bloat
- Heart diseases, and many more