Why do dogs snort?

Discussion in 'Dog Training and Behaviour' started by WoodyGSP, Apr 6, 2010.


  1. WoodyGSP

    WoodyGSP PetForums Senior

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    When Woody plays with his mum, she often snorts(a bit like she's got something up her nose/sneeze) at him. I just wondered why she does this?
     
  2. simplysardonic

    simplysardonic Look! Look at all the f***s I don't give!

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    I have no idea but when we come home the 2 GSDs snort at us, Bob less so, so I assume it means they are happy
     
  3. WoodyGSP

    WoodyGSP PetForums Senior

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    Yes Woody does it occasionally when we come home too. I wondered if it was something to do with excitement?
     
  4. simplysardonic

    simplysardonic Look! Look at all the f***s I don't give!

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    It's strange as they only seem do it as a greeting, you got me thinking & I listened to them as hubby took them out just now (they are excited!) & no snorting just a lot of barking & whining
     
  5. cutekiaro1

    cutekiaro1 PetForums VIP

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    Ace does it to Akira when they are playing, but havent got a clue why lol, it sounds like its ciming from the back of the throat rather than the nose though :D
     
  6. wooliewoo

    wooliewoo PetForums VIP

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    My lot do it when they wake me up
     
  7. Darkstitch

    Darkstitch PetForums Member

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    Lol I've no idea actually, Bella does is while she's playing then wipes her nose all down the front of the sofa :eek:
     
  8. Dirky47

    Dirky47 Banned

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    Are they the same with humans? As far as I know if human snorts, they probably have a heart disease symptoms. Anyone can clear this to me?
     
  9. crubeenette

    crubeenette PetForums Junior

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    It sounds to me as though you may be describing 'reverse sneezing', which is caused by an irritation of the soft palate.

    See here.
     
  10. MerlinsMum

    MerlinsMum PetForums VIP

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    Perhaps they are snorting with laughter? lol
     
  11. WoodyGSP

    WoodyGSP PetForums Senior

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    Woody has actually just done this again when I came down this morning. It doesn't last very long and it doesn't distress them in any way, so I'm not sure if its reverse sneezing or not?
     
  12. crubeenette

    crubeenette PetForums Junior

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    My terrier does it. I was quite alarmed at first, and thought she was choking, but after reading around and speaking to the vet I've concluded that it's the reverse sneezing in her case.

    It doesn't last long--just seconds, really--and doesn't seem to upset her. I've found that if I cover her little nostrils with my fingers then it'll stop, but it doesn't generally continue long enough for me to manage to do that.
     
  13. MerlinsMum

    MerlinsMum PetForums VIP

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    I don't think the snorts they do when playing are reverse sneezing.... more a kind of play vocalisation. I woner if it comes under the heading of a Calming signal? (Oh hurry up back please Terry! You'd know this!).

    I love it when Merly does it, and always say Per-chooof! to him in a silly voice, in imitation of the sound. If I say Per-chooof! when he's not playing, it gets him happy and ready for a game.
     
  14. WoodyGSP

    WoodyGSP PetForums Senior

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    Yes I think thats more like it:thumbup:. I think the reverse sneezing thing is medical, wheras this is more of a behaviour thing.
     
  15. leashedForLife

    leashedForLife PetForums VIP

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    hey, y;all! :--)

    i second - errm, THIRD MerlinsMum, i think its happy excitement that they are relieving -
    like an over-excited infant giving those happy shrieks? when the baby is preverbal -
    they are SO excited + happy about some stimulus, so they let the excitement out in a shrieking giggle.

    i think the snort, which is often greeting or joyous, active play, is an emotional pressure-reliever.
    and i think most dogs would react much like Merlin - ready to play! ;)


    an Experiment in Two Parts: -
    if Ur dog DOES snort under happy-circs, the next time Ur dog is relaxed + calm,
    STAND * UP, bend slightly toward the dog at a 45-degree angle (not face-on),
    and SNORT - with soft-eyes, slightly-squinted.

    what does Ur dog do, in response?

    * look puzzled, get up + come over?
    * look happy, bounce-up + play-bow?
    * smile and cock their head?
    * look confused + back away?
    * look stunned + sit completely still?
    * seem uncertain but willing to engage?
    * hide under the bed?

    Part Two of the Experiment:
    Assuming that Ur dog is OK with this, Follow-Up on the snort by playing CHASE -
    not too wildly, U play-bow slightly + U lead-off, in short, arcing runs, with lots of pauses,
    when U face Ur dog at a slight angle, head + shoulders lowered, bent at the waist,
    and SMILE with happy eyes-on-eyes, just for a moment...

    U can do this in a very-small area - around the dining-room table, or around a room-divider -
    like the wall-section between living-area + kitchen in an apt. do this ONCE only - maybe 45-secs, max;
    then chill-out with the dog, *wait* 2 to 3 days - literally; if U do this Thursday-AM we are talking no repeats until SAT or SUN-am.

    Part Two-B -
    on the next opportunity, *after* the 48-hr to 72-hr break... SNORT only.
    what does Ur dog do, the Second time, after that SNORT?

    lets plan on having results posted by Sunday-night, April 11th by 10-PM (uk-time)
    and i;ll bet we have some fun data... :thumbup:

    eager to see the results :p tail up + wagging,
    --- terry
     
    #15 leashedForLife, Apr 8, 2010
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2010
    RachyBobs likes this.
  16. MerlinsMum

    MerlinsMum PetForums VIP

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    Welcome back Terry and Per-choooooof to you! *snort*
     
  17. k8t

    k8t PetForums Senior

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    Hi

    Welcome back Terry!!!

    I think it is a displacement behaviour. When I teach my dog something new (tonight at HTM it was to cross her paws over each other), she will give me a number of behaviours to try and get the click reward and also throw in a few sneezes, with a shake of her head. II hope to shape it sometime in the future, but she is doing enough at the moment)

    When we come down in the morning, she does a sort of whooo whooo in a deep voice, actually sounds like hello!!!!:eek:

    I think it is a very pleasant way to start the morning, same as a dog who when you come into their home, goes off and fetches you a toy.

    Kate
     
  18. leashedForLife

    leashedForLife PetForums VIP

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    hey, hun!
    Wolf (who arrived as an 8-WO pup dumped in our farm-drive with his sister) would sneeze when deeply moved;
    it was times of BIG emotion + almost seeming-embarrassment, he would sneeze violently with a huge smile,
    his record was 7 in a row, :lol: each increasingly-violent - with the last, the poor dog whomped his nose,
    end-on, into the carpeted floor! OUCH...
    that stopped his sneezes, but poor fella, it had to have hurt.

    that particular time, we (mum + kids) had just returned from the annual beach-week,
    when he stayed home with our a-hem, sire - and he was ALWAYS so happy to see us;
    every year, he would lose wt while we were gone, and pick it up after we got home.

    cheers,
    --- terry
     
  19. MerlinsMum

    MerlinsMum PetForums VIP

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    I must also mention..... When staying with my mum over Easter, Merlin often rushed into the living room and wiped his nose & muzzle over the floor & furniture.

    Mum has had dogs all her life but has probably either forgotten this behaviour, or her last dog/s didn't do it... (she's in her late 70's now and getting a bit forgetful, bless her).

    So mum said to dog - Oy! Merlin! don't wipe yourself on my carpet! Stop that! Not nice!

    Not realising that dog isn't cleaning itself... oh heavens no... do you think a dog would ever leave anything to be wiped off??? Nope, they lick the very smell away.... polished to a high degree and literally spotless and smell-less once they are done.

    The rolling around and wiping nose is another pleasure gesture, which we humans haven't quite taken on board.

    I guess the nearest I can think of it, is when we find something soft and pleasant smelling, a freshly washed pillow? a scented towel? a flower even? and we pick it up and inhale deeply with eyes closed.... reminds us of something very nice.... gorgeous scents....

    Sometimes if we like it enough we will even roll in it ourselves in our own way... we have hands so we can move it over our faces, feel the texture, drink in the scent and the feel.... Hmmm not so different to the dog rolling on the floor then...lol

    Dogs of course have loads more times the scent ability that we do... so when they have smelled or tasted something great, and it makes them happy, of course they will loll back in their armchairs... eyes closed in bliss... Ohhh that was wonderful..... ohhh loooovely.... Mmmm mmmm mmmm mmmm!!!!!!!!!!
     
  20. Clare7435

    Clare7435 PetForums VIP

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    My dog will snort when she's p1ssed off...most dogs growl when in this mood...nope not mine, she snorts....which is fizz all over....when she's busy barking like a mad dog and snorting at any door knockers she's got the fr up on her back and she's wagging her tail....what's that all about??? lol...ah well.....she might be a little scatterbrained with her responses but she's my baby and I love er....:D:D:Dxx
     
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