My dog is currently sleeping with her head on my leg, and snoring quite blissfully. While I am certain that she doesn't have apnea (she only snores occasionally, and, as a 74 pound adult Labrador retriever, she is only 4 pounds overweight), it made me wonder if dogs can even have sleep apnea. Can they?

Note: I'm not asking if my dog has apnea (she definitely doesn't), I'm only asking if dogs in general can get sleep apnea.

  • What breed of dog? 4 pounds of extra weight is a lot on a Chihuahua, not so much on a Newfoundland Retriever.
    – Cucamonga
    Jul 4, 2015 at 4:56
  • 1
    @Cucamonga - She's a Labrador retriever. She weighs 74 pounds, but she should be about 70 pounds. Not a big deal, even according to our vet. And as I said, she definitely doesn't have apnea.
    – Wad Cheber
    Jul 4, 2015 at 4:59

1 Answer 1


Sleep Apnea isn't a disorder that is isolated to just humans. Dogs can also be affected by this disorder.

Cases of Sleep Apnea in dogs will result in drop in blood oxygen levels and interrupted sleep. This in itself isn't life or death but if this persist, it can lead to much more serious health conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, obesity, and heart diseases.

Noticeable symptoms of Sleep Apnea include

  • Choking/gasping during sleep
  • Loud chronic snoring
  • Interrupted breathing with long pauses between breathes
  • Sleepiness during day
  • Irritability

Canine Sleep Apnea is also most common in dogs with flatter faces. Such as English bulldogs, pugs and Boston terriers. Overweight dogs also have higher chances of having Sleep Apnea.

Source Canine Sleep Apnea

  • "Canine Sleep Apnea is also most common in dogs with flatter faces." - due to the variance in dog head builds, this is definitely a factor.
    – JoshDM
    Jul 22, 2015 at 17:54

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