Dogs with short noses have an elongated palate. When excited, they are prone to a “reverse sneeze” where the dog will quickly, and seemingly laboriously, gasp and snort. This is caused by air or debris getting caught under the palate and irritating the throat or limiting breathing. “Reverse Sneezing” episodes won’t hurt the dog in the least, but it will scare the dog, and maybe it’s owners.
If you witness a dog having a “Reverse Sneeze” it may seem alarming, but it is not a harmful condition, and there are no ill effects. The dog is completely normal before and after the episode. During a “Reverse Sneeze”, the dog will make rapid and long inspirations, stand still, and extend his head. A loud snorting sound is produced, which may make you think the dog has something caught in his nose. This attack can last for several seconds to a minute if left unaided.
The quickest way to stop these attacks is to talk to the dog calmly, and cover their nose with the palm of your hand, this will force the dog to breath more slowly and deeply through it’s mouth. This is really quite a common occurrence and nothing to worry about unduly. This is also known within our breed as “The Lhasa Snort”, or “The Lhasa Puffs” .
If for any reason your dog has numerous attacks of this kind then it is best that you seek veterinary advice for peace of mind.