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Does My French Bulldog Need a Nose Surgery?



French Bulldogs have so many cute features that you cannot but love them. Their big bright eyes, and bat-like ears are such an attraction, including their scrunchy little face. However, if your Frenchie has started wheezing and gasping for breath lately, which leaves them exhausted most of the time, it may be time to consider a nose surgery. But first, let us understand what this nose surgery thing is all about.



What is French Bulldog Nose Surgery?

French Bulldogs belong to the class of dogs with brachycephalic syndrome. This means that they have a short head and smushed-in-face, and therefore, very tiny nose. The implication is that this dog breed usually breath in a snorty way because they are cosmetically bred over the years to have a shortened head and compressed upper jaw, leaving them with noses, throats, and airways that are significantly reduced in size. Other dog breeds of this type are Pugs, Boxers, and British Bulldog.

All brachycephalic dogs have a constricted, and often slit-like nostrils called stenotic nares. Dogs with Stenotic nares have difficulty breathing as they hardly take in enough oxygen. This explains why your Frenchie may often be breathing through his mouth or have excessive panting sometimes. This experience is very similar to when you have a cold with a stuffy nose.

The good news is that the condition is not fatal as it can be corrected through a special kind of surgery called Stenotic Nares Surgery. This is usually recommended in moderate or several cases of stenotic nares.

Please note that this is not a type of surgery you can just wake up and decide to do any time you like. If you want to go through the procedure, you must undertake it when it is safest for your French Bulldog. If this procedure is recommended for your French Bulldog, then it is best to do it when they are under one year of age. preferably, your French Bulldog should be examined when they are being spayed or neutered.

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Is Stenotic Nares Surgery Necessary for Your French Bulldog

As previously mentioned, years of cosmetic breeding have left French Bulldogs and other similar breeds with the short end of the stick when it comes to respiratory health. And while stenotic nares are a primary respiratory problem, they are only the tip of the iceberg.

Although French Bulldogs may have smaller noses, throats and airways, the soft palate and tongue as well as tissues within the nostrils have remained standard in size. Cramped for space, these tissues obstruct the flow of air in the upper airways. It’s just one more reason why your poor, sweet Frenchie sometimes gasps for a decent breath.

Brachycephalic breeds are subject to several respiratory disorders. In addition to stenotic nares, French Bulldogs may also suffer from an elongated soft palate. With a lack of sufficient space for the soft palate, it sometimes gets drawn into and stuck in the windpipe when the dog breathes. Sounds uncomfortable? Just imagine how your pet feels.

A secondary disorder to stenotic nares is everted laryngeal saccules. One result of not treating your pet’s escalating struggle to breathe is that the small saccules or pockets of their larynx will literally turn inside-out and block the throat.

Each of these upper airway obstruction disorders when grouped in whole or in part make up what is commonly referred to as brachycephalic syndrome or brachycephalic airway obstruction syndrome (BOAS). Left untreated, they become progressively worse. French Bulldogs with BOAS may experience increased breathing difficulties, gasping, episodes of gagging and vomiting, weakness and an inability to tolerate exercise. Their heart may also be severely strained.

The good news is that stenotic nares surgery, and possibly elongated soft palate surgery can go a long way to improving your pet’s ability to breathe. Early intervention may help prevent everted laryngeal saccules and relieve stress on the heart. And who doesn’t feel better from simply being able to breathe deeply?

Finally, if your Frenchie’s breathing seems more labored than usual, if they lack energy, or if they gasp or wheeze, it may be time to talk to your vet. Getting your French Bulldog the nose surgery they need could extend its lifetime. And what better gift can you offer than a breath of fresh air?

3 comments

  • Kirsten

    We had our frenchie’s nose/ pallet / saccule surgery and has Been a life changer…… she can breath so much better and actually looks better!!! More oxygen definitely helps!!! It hurts me to see this breed have so many ailments. I can’t imagine my life without my little nugget, but I do wish the breeders could solve this problem with all their ailments.


  • Pamela Clarke

    My Frenchies look like they have small nares but they run big distances (lots of acreage) at racing speed and never are short of breath. They don’t snore and are in good health. What you see on the outside does not always give the whole picture.


  • Debbie Cassells

    I had my Frenchie’s nares done and soft palate. It really did improve his breathing almost immediately! He still snorted like a little piggy but when slept you couldn’t hear a sound . He also seemed like he had more energy. It was definitely the right thing to do . My vet said all Brachiocephalic dogs should have this procedure done .

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