Upside down, legs in the air, tongues hanging out … all dogs sleep like this, RIGHT? or do they?
The question is, is it normal for dogs to sleep with their tongues out, and why do they do it?
Dogs sleep with their tongues out for a variety of reasons. It could be that they’re hot, they’re comfortable like that, or it’s just their natural sleeping position. Whatever the reason, it’s perfectly normal for dogs to sleep with their tongues sticking out!
Let us take you through the reasons why your dog may be sleeping like this and when you should be worried.
Dogs Sleeping With Tongues Out
Some dogs have a strange yet adorable habit of sticking their tongues out when they sleep. It’s possible that it’s just the tip or the entire tongue hanging out of their mouth.
Nothing is more adorable. Although this is a natural habit, it’s always good to know why they do it. This is the perfect opportunity for that.
Why Do Dogs Sleep With Their Tongue Out?
There are a few reasons that your dog may sleep with their tongue out. It could be due to their breed, the weather, or they’re just comfortable like that.
Take a look at all the reasons why dogs stick their tongues out when sleeping and what you need to do if it’s abnormal for your pet.
- Temperature regulation
- Extreme stress/anxiety
- Medication side effects
- Dental concerns – missing teeth
- Hanging tongue syndrome
One of the most common reasons that dogs sleep with their tongues out is to regulate their temperature.
Dogs don’t sweat as humans do. They cool themselves down by panting with their mouths open. When they sleep, their tongue often hangs out as they continue to pant and cool themselves down.
If you notice your dog is sleeping with their tongue out more often than usual, it could be a sign that they’re too hot. Check the room temperature and make sure it’s not too warm for them. You can also provide them with a cooling mat or bed to help them stay comfortable.
According to the experts, dogs keep their tongues out when they’re hot or during the summer season. This is because of the huge surface area that’s exposed to air while they sleep.
When dogs are happy and content, they often stick their tongues out as a sign of relaxation. This is different from when they’re trying to regulate their temperature.
A dog that’s sleeping with its tongue out and tail wagging is usually in a deep sleep and enjoying sweet dreams.
Dogs that are anxious or stressed tend to sleep with their tongue out. This is to prevent them from biting on the inside of their cheeks due to tension and discomfort.
Some dog owners have noticed that their anxious pets stick their tongues out when hearing loud noises, including fireworks, thunderstorms, and gunshots.
Other dogs may exhibit this type of behaviour when they’re suffering from depression, separation anxiety, or some other mental health condition.
Medication side effects
Some dogs may stick their tongues out while sleeping due to certain medications they’ve been prescribed by a veterinarian.
For example, many anti-anxiety and antidepressant drugs cause sleepiness and drowsiness in dogs, which can lead to them sticking their tongues out while sleeping.
In some cases, this side effect may go away after a few weeks as the dog gets used to the medication.
Dental Concerns – Missing Teeth
If your dog is missing teeth, it’s possible that he’s sticking his tongue out in an attempt to keep his mouth closed. This is because chewing, eating, drinking water, and even panting can be difficult for dogs with missing teeth.
If you suspect that dental concerns are the reason your pet is sticking his tongue out while sleeping, talk to your veterinarian about possible treatment options.
Hanging Tongue Syndrome
Finally, some dogs may stick their tongues out while sleeping as a result of hanging tongue syndrome. This is a condition that causes the tongue to hang out of the mouth due to muscle weakness or paralysis.
Hanging tongue syndrome is usually caused by an injury to the tongue or head, birth defects, or nerve damage. If your dog has this condition, he may also drool excessively and have difficulty eating and breathing.
If you think your dog may be suffering from hanging tongue syndrome, consult a veterinarian immediately to discuss treatment options.
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Is There A Cure For Hanging Tongue Syndrome?
There is no cure for hanging tongue syndrome, but there are some treatment options that can help your dog manage the condition.
Treatment may include physical therapy to help strengthen the muscles in your dog’s tongue, medications to help with pain and inflammation, and surgery to remove the cause of the paralysis or weakness.
If you think your dog may be suffering from hanging tongue syndrome, it’s important to consult with a veterinarian as soon as possible. With the right treatment and care, your dog can live a healthy and happy life despite its condition.
Why Do Senior Dogs Sleep With Their Tongues Out?
One of the most common reasons that senior dogs sleep with their tongues out is due to age-related changes in their bodies.
This can include decreased mobility, muscle weakness, and other health conditions that affect how they move or breathe when sleeping.
In addition, some older dogs may experience dental issues, such as missing teeth or an inability to keep their mouths closed, which can cause them to stick their tongues out while sleeping.
If you think your senior dog’s tongue sticking out while sleeping is due to an underlying health condition, talk to your veterinarian.
What If My Dog’s Tongue Sticks Out All the Time, Not Just When Sleeping?
If your dog’s tongue sticks out all the time, not just when sleeping, it could be a sign of an underlying health condition. This is especially true if your pet is also drooling excessively, has difficulty eating or drinking, or is having trouble breathing.
To determine the cause of your dog’s tongue sticking out and develop an appropriate treatment plan, you should consult a veterinarian as soon as possible.
They can perform a thorough medical examination and order any necessary diagnostic tests to identify the underlying cause of your pet’s symptoms.
Some potential causes of persistent tongue protrusion in dogs include nerve damage, head or neck trauma, infections, tumours, and certain neurological diseases.
Treatment for tongue protrusion will vary depending on the underlying cause. For example, nerve damage may require surgery to correct, while infections can be treated with antibiotics.
If you think your dog’s tongue sticking out all the time is due to an underlying health condition, it’s important to seek treatment sooner rather than later. This can help minimize your pet’s discomfort and improve his chances of recovery.
Read Here: Why does my dog sound congested when sleeping?
There are a variety of reasons why dogs sleep with their tongues sticking out. These include things like dental issues, age-related changes in the body, and hanging tongue syndrome.
If you’re concerned about your pet’s tongue sticking out while sleeping, talk to your veterinarian. They can help you determine if there’s any cause for concern and recommend treatment options.
For over a decade, Adrienne has been a freelance content writer and blogger who’s passion lies in anything related to dogs. Growing up, dogs were a very important part of family life in the Hardwick household. Now, Adrienne is the proud parent to two Swedish Vallhunds called Moose and Pumpkin.