A very informative article produced by Vets Now discussing issues that can be present in a variety of flat-faced dogs, including pugs, Boston terriers, French bulldogs among many others.

I have a flat-faced dog such as a French bulldog. What do I need to know?

If you would like to discuss any issues further, including any treatment options, please do get in contact with us on 0115 9727050 and book an appointment with one of our vets!

french bulldog puppy

We published this article last year, but as French Bulldogs are set to become the most popular breed in the UK, we feel it is even more relevant:

Brachycephalic breeds are those with short or squashed noses or heads, for example English & French Bulldogs, Boxers, Pugs, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Lhasa Apsos, Shih Tzus and Pekingese among others. All these dogs are at risk of Brachycephalic Obstructive Airway Syndrome (BOAS).

One component of BOAS is very narrow (stenotic) nostrils – these can dramatically increase the resistance to air flow through the nose. This results in a much larger effort required for breathing compared to a normal animal, which creates a negative pressure and can result in further collapse of the delicate cartilage support structures within the respiratory tract.

You can get an idea of how much more effort is needed in order to breathe by these affected dogs by gently pinching your own nostrils slightly and trying to breathe through your nose for several minutes. You will notice that you have to take deeper breaths and a lot more effort is required.

nostrils pug
nostrils pug

In dogs with narrow nostrils, we recommend widening these early on in their life, to prevent the secondary complications that occur with time. The operation involves the removal of a section of cartilage in front of the nose and this can significantly improve air flow and reduce resistance.

The photos attached show the very narrow nostrils before the operation, and then after the procedure has been carried out, showing widened and more open nostrils. The sutures are dissolvable, so will be removed with time.

If you own a brachycephalic breed and would like to discuss airway surgery further, please do not hesitate to speak to our vets!

Thank you to my lovely vet Katy Dodson for popping your head in reception when you were running late to tell me not to worry. You knew exactly how panicked I was feeling waiting for those results x

And thank you for being extra daft and putting a colourful dressing on both nooks back paws (he’d licked a stitch out) just so he can look like a 80’s disco diva 😂😂😂 – you are the best vet ever, wouldn’t trust my babies with anyone else.


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