Why Is My Dog Clearing It’s Throat?

correct answerThe Short Answer is:

Grass dust and other foreign materials can easily enter your dog's throat and cause a cough since your dog explores the world mostly with his mouth and nose. Coughing is probably just your dog's way of getting rid of those materials.

In this research you will know the answer to the query “Why Is My Dog Clearing Its Throat?“.

You just returned from a run with your furkid as you do every day. A goose-honking cough erupts from his throat unearthly and unnatural.

What is going on? Why does my dog sound like hes clearing his throat? When you see him you nearly collapse from shock before rushing in frantically trying to determine whether he is possessed by something extraterrestrial.

What is the case? Was he possessed by Loki? Are dogs even supposed to cough? Are they clearing their throats? Does that happen? How does that sound?

It is true that some dogs can speak so is it possible that dog clears throat. Obviously they’re trying to imitate sounds more as a parrot does but its still impressive.

Find out everything you need to know about doggy coughs before pulling out your hair.

What do I mean by a dog clearing its throat? Dog keeps clearing his throat?

Your fur kids body probably makes dozens of strange sounds whenever its active. What can you do to ensure that your fur kid isnot choking or coughing while clearing his throat?

It sounds like a goose honking when a dog clears his throat. There may be loud or quiet noises depending on the puppys size and the circumstances. The larger the dog the louder the noise.

A reverse sneeze is another possibility. Now what? Reverse sneezing can be used by dogs to combat postnasal drip or other irritants in their airways.

A dog here sneezes by sucking air into his nose with the same force as he would if he sneezed. You would think your dog was having a terrible cold as it would make the strangest honking wheezing sounds.

However this is normal for dogs. It sounds like him clearing his throat except air flows into his body in this case not out of it.

A dogs cough can take many different forms and sound different. A wide range of causes can cause them from kennel cough and heart disease to tracheal collapse.

When he couched he could have appeared to be deeply exhaling in one powerful short burst.

Wheezing or even retching could also be heard from him. Its possible for a doggy cough to go unnoticed because they make so little noise when they do it.

Dogs often cough and clear their throats at the same time making it difficult to tell the difference.

Hes probably making a reverse sneeze or clearing his throat when he makes the noise that sounds like a goose honking.

However the noise could also be a cough. Getting him to a vet may be best if you are uncertain and he repeatedly does it.

Why do dogs clear their throats? Why Is My Dog Clearing Its Throat?

A dogs throat may need to be cleared for many reasons. Occasionally humans also experience mild irritation like these.

Think of the pollen in the park or the dust on the rug that sticks to your fingers when this move could be life-threatening since that foreign object could block his esophagus (windpipe) preventing him from breathing.

There is nothing abnormal about these things and there is no need to be concerned. 

Something stuck in his throat

Despite your furry kid coughing up a storm there may be sinister reasons behind it. A foreign object usually lodges in his throat.

This could be life-threatening since the foreign body could obstruct his esophagus (windpipe) preventing him from breathing.

A sharp object would also cause severe damage to Fidos esophagus if it had sharp edges. To prevent foreign objects from entering your pups mouth or throat while he coughs always check his mouth and throat.

Go to the vet as soon as possible if you notice anything. Your dog may be in danger.

Kennel cough

Kennel cough also called canine bronchitis is another relatively common condition. Most dogs will recover without medication as it is highly contagious but usually not serious. I will discuss this later.

Tracheal collapse

The chances of your pup developing tracheal collapse are higher if he is of a small breed.

A weakening or failure of the rings in the trachea (a part of the throat) causes the rings to collapse.

Whenever the puppy cannot breathe properly he will make a sound similar to a honking goose.

Most of the time the trachea does not collapse completely or permanently.

The trachea caves in periodically and then reopens.

Its heartbreaking to see your beloved pooch suffer like this.

Treatments are available that can alleviate the discomfort and possibly treat the condition.

Discuss your options with your veterinarian.


Developing pneumonia is possible if your dog already has kennel cough or canine influenza.

In addition to bacterial infections in the lungs and airways this disease can also be caused by allergies.

This disease is most commonly found in older dogs.

Compared to energetic teenage pup their bodies and immune systems are weaker so they are more susceptible to this illness.

Take good care of an elderly dog with a respiratory infection to prevent pneumonia.

Heart disease

Other common causes of dog coughs include heart disease.

Hearing that your pet may have heart problems could make him cough up a storm seems strange but hear me out.

The lungs accumulate fluid due to some of these diseases (yes there are different types of canine heart disease).

Wet phlegmy cough results from this fluid overload and its almost as bad as it sounds.

Lung cancer

The cause of canine coughing is often lung cancer which is a sinister disease.

The good news is that some pups beat cancer and live a long and happy life.

Vets can sometimes still do something about the killer if they catch it in its early stages.

However there is no guarantee that your beloved Rover will make it through.

What is kennel cough?

A contagious respiratory infection in dogs is referred to as kennel cough almost the same as the flu in humans. Bordetella is the name of the bacteria that often causes it Bordetella bronchiseptica m.

Viruses are often associated with this infection as well.

All forms of kennel cough are commonly picked up and spread by dogs living close together such as in a kennel.

Do we need to name diseases in a more creative way? The typical situation is as follows: Rover is happily playing at the kennels.

When he breathes in a sneaky little virus and bacteria hitch a ride on a water droplet and get in his nose.

His respiratory tract is invaded by these two fiends which travel to his vocal cord (larynx) and windpipe (trachea).

As they grow they cause inflammation which results in that goose-honking cough.

Most of the dust bacteria and viruses get trapped in the mucus lining the airways before they can get anywhere else.

Nevertheless this defense system is frequently weakened by numerous factors.

Among these factors are crowded and poorly ventilated living spaces cold temperatures exposure to irritants like dust and cigarette smoke and stress.

Usually your pup or dog clearing throat constantly and forcefully if he has kennel cough.

You may have to take your Fido to the vet if he gets really sick. Sneezing nasal discharge or even eye discharge are all possible.

I feel bad for him. Although his appetite and energy levels would not likely go down hes likely to feel tired. What could be better?

How do I treat kennel cough?

Kennel cough is usually a minor illness that dogs recover from quickly.

An average recovery time is around three weeks although older dogs and those with underlying health problems may require six weeks.

Your vet can always prescribe some medications if you want your pup to recover quicker and minimize the symptoms.

The doctor will likely prescribe some antibiotics to kill the bacteria causing the infection as well as cough medicine. Yes dogs can get those too.

In addition you could reduce factors that make your furkid cough by using a humidifier. You should keep him in a well-ventilated area with a humidifier running instead of his usual kennel. Instead of using a collar switch to a harness if he usually strains against the leash.

In the event that your pup does not recover within three to six weeks or if he gets worse take him to the vet for a checkup. It is possible for children with kennel cough to develop pneumonia which can be extremely harmful. 

There is a vaccine against kennel cough did you know? How awesome is that! Depending on your pups needs he or she may receive the injection mouth spray or nasal mist.

Despite these precautions your pup may still catch kennel cough or a respiratory infection. We apologize.

How can I help a dog to clear its throat?

Now that we know why dogs cough we can take steps to prevent it. How should you handle a dog coughing up a storm? Your response will depend on the circumstances. Find out what the most common reasons are.

His throat was stuffed with something

When something gets stuck in the throat of your dog he might be unable to breathe. Its crucial to act quickly in this situation since its serious.

You should keep your pup calm. As a result he may struggle a lot and even bite if hes distressed. Keeping him restrained and checking his mouth and throat will prevent any further damage.

During this process you might need to restrain him since you will have to open his mouth.

Take a large pair of tweezers and pull out the object if it is close to your pups mouth.

The problem might be too far behind the throat for you to reach. Try not to push at something behind your pets throat.

If you do you will likely force it deeper worsening the situation. 

You may be able to dislodge a large object stuck in your pups throat such as a ball. At his throats base place your thumbs underneath his jaw.

Then slowly but firmly push forward. 

Regardless of whether you are able to remove the item you should have your dog checked by a veterinarian.

Get there as soon as possible if the item can not be removed as this could save your pups life.

The delicate tissue in your pups throat might still be damaged even after you get the item out so consult your veterinarian.

Kennel cough

Usually your pup would only need some TLC if he has kennel cough. Make sure he gets plenty of rest eats healthy and drinks plenty of water.

Due to an inflamed throat he coughs because breathing is painful. Therefore keeping him calm so that he breathes less and barks less will be beneficial.

Tracheal collapse

When there is a tracheal collapse coughing can snowball out of control.

The reason your dog coughs is that the irritation in his throat causes his throat to swell.

As a result your dog coughs more due to the irritation in his throat.

It is best to keep him calm in order to prevent him from developing a cough.

For coughing episodes to stop a veterinarian might prescribe cough suppressants or sedatives. 

Preventative measures are however the best way to go. You may have to treat your pup for tracheal collapse if he is of a small breed.

Keeping him healthy is therefore important. Make sure hes in good shape use a harness instead of a collar and avoid irritants like dust and pollen.


The condition is often fatal and it is caused by a severe infection.

This means your pup is likely suffering from a serious illness.

Give him medication the vet recommends and keep him calm and comfortable.

Most likely antibiotics cough suppressants and anti-inflammatory drugs would be included. 

It is possible for your pup to need supplemental oxygen therapy and fluid therapy if things get really bad. This isnot ideal but it does happen.

Heart disease

The fluid buildup around your pups lungs is probably causing him to cough due to heart disease.

If you keep him calm he may not need to cough as often.

There is also a possibility that your veterinarian will prescribe medication to reduce fluid buildup and tame coughing.

Lung cancer

Your dog probably feels pretty uncomfortable right now due to lung cancer. Along with medication keeping him comfortable is the best way to help him.

You should keep food and water at hand for him and limit his physical activity. Due to the decreased strain on his lungs he would not need to cough as much.

Do dogs get phlegm and why?

The same thing happens to dogs as it does to humans.

The reasons for this are as numerous as we humans. As we discussed in the previous section pneumonia is one of the most common.

Phlegm can also be coughed up when fluid builds up in the lungs.

You can imagine that this would be pretty gross and distressing for you the human parent. Whenever you spot a phlegmy cough take your pet to the vet for a checkup just in case.


There are many reasons why dogs cough the most common being kennel cough or having something stuck in their throat.

Even if you successfully dislodged something stuck in your puppys throat its best to take him to the vet. Your puppy may have damaged the airways in the process.

In addition there is the dreaded kennel cough. In spite of its high contagiousness this usually does not result in a severe illness.

I imagine it must sound horrible with that goose-honking cough and all the wheezing that goes along with it. It typically takes between three and six weeks for your pup to recover from this.

Take him to the vet if he does not get better soon since kennel cough can turn into pneumonia.

If you want to read more about dog health tips read here: Dog Health Tips and Tricks.

Why Is My Dog Clearing Its Throat? (Watch Video)

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