Everyone gets hiccups from time to time. It doesn’t matter if you’re a human or a dog. Hiccups aren’t anything to bat an eyelash at. While they can be annoying, hiccups look adorable on puppies. So, what do you need to know about puppy hiccups?
First, puppies get the hiccups for similar reasons we get the hiccups. They don’t pose a threat to your doggo other than being a nuisance when they’re trying to take a nap. Let’s talk about puppy hiccups and everything you need to know about them.
What are puppy hiccups?
A hiccup sounds scarier than it actually is. It’s an uncontrollable spasm of the diaphragm. The diaphragm is a muscle that pulls air down and into your lungs, helping you breathe properly. When the diaphragm is out of sync or spasms, then it creates hiccupping. Hiccups are the same for both puppies, adult dogs, and humans alike.
However, puppies are prone to getting hiccups more so than adult dogs. This is because of their energy levels. Puppies are more energetic than most adult dogs. They’re more active and can get uncontrollable bursts of energy. In addition, puppies may eat and drink faster than they should. All of this impacts their breathing, thus causing them to hiccup.
Another reason puppies tend to get hiccups more so than adult dogs is because of their organs. The organs inside a puppy are less mature and less developed than aging dogs. Because of this, hiccupping can occur at an increased chance.
Why do puppies get hiccups?
While it’s unsure what the purpose of hiccups is, puppies are more likely to get a case of the hiccups than adult dogs. As explained earlier, this has a lot to do with their energy levels and their bodies still developing and growing. There are a couple of other reasons, though.
One reason is their age. Between the ages of eight months and one year, hiccups become scarce. So, it really occurs during the first eight months of a puppy’s life. It is also known that puppies get hiccups while they’re still in the womb. So, it’s believed that hiccups, in some way, help a puppy’s lungs develop. Or, it can mean that the fetal is testing out their breathing.
Overstimulation is another cause of the hiccups. When your puppy is too excited, stressed, nervous, or fatigued, hiccups can occur. When puppies begin to mature, that’s when hiccups will decrease. Eating and drinking too fast is another cause since your puppy will be gulping down air while munching away on their dinner. Hiccups may be a way to get rid of the excess air.
Finally, another cause of puppies’ hiccupping may be that they are too cold. Hiccups might be a body response to them trying to warm themselves up again. Or, it could be that your puppy is relieving gas or an upset stomach.
There are many different reasons, and none of them are necessarily bad. Your puppy will grow out of having the hiccups and only get them once in a while as they grow and mature. Still, if it happens often, there are ways to help your puppy’s hiccupping.
How to get rid of puppy hiccups
While you don’t need to worry about your puppy hiccupping, there are a few things you can do to help them. Puppies often get confused or scared when they hiccup as they don’t know why they’re doing it or what it is. While there isn’t too much you can do to get rid of hiccups, there are a couple of ways you can help your pooch.
First, you can wait it out. Hiccups only last a couple of minutes, and it’s not hurting them. So, it wouldn’t matter if you waited it out. You can also give your pup food or water. Just be sure they don’t eat or drink it too fast, or else that could cause the hiccups to start all over again. If your doggo gets hiccups a lot from eating too fast, consider buying a special bowl that makes them slow down when eating.
Another way to help get rid of their hiccups is to change up their exercise. When you first notice them hiccupping, take them for a walk and play a game of fetch out in the backyard. But getting up and moving around, your puppy’s breathing will change, thus getting rid of the hiccups. Alternatively, you can help calm their breathing by rolling them over onto their back and giving your pooch a nice belly rub.
What if puppy hiccups don’t go away?
While hiccups don’t hurt your dog and don’t pose a threat, they could also occur because of some other underlying issue. If you notice that the hiccupping has been going on for a lot longer than it should, or it turns into wheezing, then you’ll need to call your veterinarian right away. If the hiccups begin to cause irregular breathing or makes it difficult, then a trip to the vet will be a good idea.
Your pup may have pneumonia or asthma, or another underlying breathing issue. Parasites could also be an issue, especially if your dog hiccups a lot and has other gastrointestinal issues such as constipation, diarrhea, loss of appetite, or vomiting.
Puppy hiccups: everything you need to know
So, are puppy hiccups a bad thing? Most of the time, no. They don’t hurt your pup, and it’s cute to watch. There are ways to make it go away faster if it’s really making your pooch feel uncomfortable, but it should go away on its own within a few minutes.