Reverse sneezing is a common phenomenon in dogs. In a regular sneeze, your dog pushes air out through the nose; however, in a reverse sneeze, air is pulled rapidly into the nose. During a reverse sneeze, your dog will make rapid and long inspirations, stand still with his elbows spread apart, extend his head, and his eyes may bulge. Each reverse sneezing episode generally lasts for one to two minutes.

The exact reasons for these episodes are unknown but may be related to allergies, nasal irritants or nasal inflammation. Reverse sneezing attacks are generally quite brief and not life threatening.

Diagnosis and Treatment Notes:

  • Reverse sneezing is generally diagnosed by a description of the event by the owner or by the veterinarian observing the abnormal breathing pattern. Physical examination and a thorough oral exam is important to make sure there isn’t a physical reason for the reverse sneezing.  Your veterinarian may suggest various tests such as chest x-rays or bloodwork to rule out other disorders.
  • Reverse sneezing is non-life threatening and usually doesn’t require treatment. To stop an episode, stimulate your dog to swallow either massaging the throat or briefly pinching off the nasal openings. For some dogs, treatment is necessary and may include antihistamines if allergies are suspected. Discuss treatment details when your pet is diagnosed with this condition.


What to Watch for*:

  • Frequent and rapid snorting
  • Coughing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficult breathing


*Please notify us if you notice any of the above signs or if you have any questions!

Dear Valued Clients

During these challenging times, there have been some unforeseen changes at The Big Easy Animal Hospital. I cannot express enough my sincere apology for any inconvenience you have experienced at The Big Easy during these times. As we strive to make the practice safe to protect everyone including you, your family, and our Big Easy team and their families, I’ve decided to make certain changes while we are under this pandemic. These changes will be temporary.


Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday:
Walk Ins: Check-in starts at 9:45am.There are a limited amount of patients we can accept. Our receptionists will be happy to assist you with options to help guide you and your pet(s).)


Saturday Hours

Saturdays will be TECHNICIAN APPOINTMENTS only. These will include boosters, bloodwork, nail trims, certain diagnostics, etc. There will not be a veterinarian on site. While I understand these changes can be inconvenient, I have listed local veterinary clinics that we have contacted and are open to see walk-ins throughout the week and Saturdays as well. For life threatening emergencies that occur outside business hours, please contact the following 24-hour animal hospitals below.

Please, be safe and healthy.

Thank you all for your understanding. -Aileen Ruiz, DVM


24 Hour Emergency Care:


Pittsburgh Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Center

807 Camp Horne Road
Pittsburgh, PA



4224 Northern Pike
Monroeville, PA

VCA Castle Shannon Animal Hospital

3610 Library Road
Pittsburgh, PA

Veterinarians Accepting Walk in Care:

Penn Animal Hospital

2205 Penn Avenue

North Boros Veterinary Hospital

2255 Babcock Blvd



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