Saturday, November 11, 2017

Top Veterinary Articles of the Week: Reverse Sneezing, Entropion, and more ...

Reverse Sneezing in Dogs: Is It Normal?

Dr. Jennifer Coates/petMD

Reverse sneezing is the scariest of all mostly benign things you can see your dog doing unless you know what's happening. I remember how concerned I was when it happened to Jasmine for the first time.

Dr. Coates describes it as a loud snorking sound; that is the best description I've heard so far.

Just like a regular sneeze, reverse sneezing is a reaction to irritation. It can happen for various harmless reasons. However, when it's severe or persistent, you might be looking at a cause that is more serious such as an infection, a foreign body, anatomical abnormalities and even masses.

I never miss a single article by Dr. Coates and neither should you.

Dog Breeds That Suffer from Eyelid Problems

Dr. Katy Nelson/petMD

Eyelids serve to protect the eyes, but when they don't develop properly, they can also cause a lot of trouble. As a result of breeding trends, our dogs suffer from more and more issues arising from the changes to their anatomy. The eyes have not been spared.

The most common breed-related issue affecting the eyes are eyelids that turn inward. This is called entropion, and it is quite painful. JD had a minor case, and even that was causing some irritation and discharge. The list of breeds that are susceptible to entropion is quite long, and if the problem is severe enough, it may require surgical correction.

Other eye issues are becoming more prevalent as well, though not always proven to be genetic in origins. That can include eyelid masses, eyelashes that grow inward, etc. Jasmine had one eyelash grown inward, and it caused a major issue. She had to have it surgically removed. Fortunately, it was just the one, and all other eyelashes were well-behaved.

To learn more about breed-related eyelid problems and affected breeds, read Dr. Nelson's article.

Why is My Dog Whining All the Time?

Dr. Eric Barchas/Dogster

Dogs can white for a bunch of reasons. Excitement, impatience, frustration, fear, pain ... I put pain last because from all the times my dogs whined, pain was the least frequent cause. I find dogs more likely to whimper from pain than whine.

Cookie, for example, whines when she hears voices outside and nobody is coming in to meet her. Especially when they are familiar voices.  For most of other communication, she uses an assortment of various other sounds--I think Cookie is just one step short of speaking English.

For the most part, I consider a whining dog an unhappy dog which means I want to figure out the reason and how to avoid it. It is essential to figure out the cause, particularly since there are medical issues that can cause whining too. This can be metabolic or glandular issues, neurological problems, and cognitive changes.

My rule of thumb is that every time there is a problem I like to investigate and confirm or rule out medical reasons first.

Hotspots in Dogs

Dr. Krista Magnifico


  1. Lasers are a real blessing. Fish oil taken internally helps with inflammation too.

    1. Yes; omega-3 should be considered essential at this point.

  2. I think you made an important distinction between whining and whimpering. My dogs also whine when they want something and whimper if they are hurt. Sometimes my Maltese has episodes of what look and sound like reverse sneezing. Thankfully they don't last long, it mostly seems to happen when she's really excited.

    1. Thank you, Beth. I'm normally not one to split hairs but sometimes I think it's important to make distinctions.