Frenchies snore, you can’t escape that fact. But if your French Bulldog’s snoring is becoming a problem, and you want some ideas on how you can stop it (or at least reduce it), I’ve created what I believe to be the ultimate guide to stopping a French Bulldog snoring at night (and when awake).
I won’t offer up the most obvious solution first. We all know that by changing a Frenchie’s position we can often stop them snoring. But it’s only a brief respite and a temporary solution. It’s also a bit unfair on your furry friend to keep waking him up just because you can’t deal with the snoring anymore!
So, what are the best ways you can employ to get your French Bulldog to stop snoring that don’t involve moving them or surgery?
If you want to know how you can stop your French Bulldog snoring with some more permanent solutions and remedies, keep reading.
How to stop my French Bulldog snoring at night
Before I list all the different ways you can use to prevent the Frenchie snoring problem, just a couple of quick pointers. French Bulldogs are brachycephalic. That means their genetic and breeding make-up means they are going to snore way more than other dogs.
And it’s only going to get worse as they get older. As Frenchies age, the back of their throat starts to get weaker. They can also start to gain weight and develop health issues, all of which that combine with their flat faces and narrow nasal passages to mean lots of snoring.
Handy Hint: If you want to know more about why your Frenchie snores so loudly, read this article that goes into detail on the reasons for snoring.
There is a special French Bulldog snoring surgery that will widen their nasal passages, but that really should be a last resort and only used in cases where your dog’s health is at risk. I would rather focus on some less invasive and painful snoring remedies first.
So, without further ado, here’s how you can make a French Bulldog stop snoring.
19 French Bulldog snoring remedies
1. Give them a pillow
The way in which your French Bulldog sleeps at night, in particular how his neck and head are positioned, can be a huge factor in how much he snores. Most Frenchies like to sleep with their paws out in front of them, with their necks lying on the ground.
This is obviously comfortable for them, but it’s why they could be snoring so badly as their airway can be obstructed.
If they can sleep with their head on a pillow, slightly raised up, it could help them to stop snoring at night so badly due to the change in position.
We tried this method with Claude our Frenchie. When he now sleeps on his bed in the kitchen at night, it appears to have reduced the snoring a little.
2. Use a bed with raised sides
On a similar tip, you could just get your Frenchie a different bed which has a pillow or raised sides already built in. The benefit of this is that the pillow won’t be able to move or get pushed off the bed, and he has no choice but to rest his little snoring head on it.
Here’s a bed we found with a pillow that could be just perfect. You can buy it on Amazon.
3. Give them a rounder bed
When I asked my vet advice on how to stop our French Bulldog snoring, he actually recommended a circular or round bed. He said that by encouraging your Frenchie to curl up when sleeping, it helps to take the pressure off the oesophagus and opens the airways up more than usual.
Claude’s rounder bed has helped to prevent his snoring when he rests his head on the sides.
We’ve already been able to try this method ourselves and when Claude sleeps on his round bed in the kitchen his snoring definitely isn’t as bad. I found this recommendation was also really common on vet websites as a snoring problem remedy.
If you want to try it for yourself then I managed to find some round beds that will suit the size of a French Bulldog on Amazon. The best one I found was this one (read the Amazon reviews).
4. Make them sleep in cool room with fresh air
We don’t like sleeping in hot rooms, and your Frenchie is no different. In a hot and dry room, your dog’s nasal passages will become more stuffy than usual, leading to more snoring than usual.
Reduce your Frenchie’s snoring by having them sleep in an airy room with fresh air. Obviously you should strike the right balance to still keep them warm at night.
5. Don’t smoke near them
A smoky room is one of the leading causes of snoring. Cigarette smoke will irritate your Frenchie’s nose and throat. This can cause increased phlegm and even swelling. That will reduce their airflow and mean more snoring.
Just like with humans, with passive exposure to smoking, your French Bulldog could also develop lung cancers, allergies, and canine heart disease (view source). Now you have even more reason to give up if you didn’t already.
6. Get more moisture into the air with a humidifier
Dry air is an irritant to your Frenchie’s throat and nose passages. If you live in a dry climate, it’s probably one of the main reasons your dog is snoring. But you can reduce your French Bulldog’s snoring at night by getting more moisture into the air in the room.
Try using a humidifier to get the air moister. It will help to lubricate your Frenchie’s throat, making air flow in and out a lot easier. Here’s a humidifier on Amazon.
7. Have an allergy check
Your French Bulldog could be allergic to pollen, dust, smoke, and other allergens in the air. These can make the snoring a lot worse. It could even be an allergy to certain ingredients in their food.
Try to keep your Frenchie’s bed away from any dust or smoke sources. If your Frenchie sneezes a lot, keep your home clean from dust. It’s also worth keeping them away from heavy road traffic when out walking, as this can also lead to a stuffy nose.
Your vet should be able to check your French Bulldog for common allergies and offer a remedy. This in turn could be the answer to their night-time snoring problem.
8. Keep their bedding clean
And to help keep those nasty allergens away, make sure they have clean beds and bedding. Make sure you wash and vacuum your Frenchie’s bedding regularly to reduce the chances of an allergic reaction or blocked nose.
We clean Claude’s bed once a week to keep the dust and dirt off it. This can help stop bad snoring due to allergens.
Bedding attracts dust, smoke, and other small particles that are invisible to the naked eye. Dust will also be a magnet for dust mites which are one of the main causes of allergic reactions in dogs.
9. Don’t let them get overweight
An overweight Frenchie will often be a snoring Frenchie. It’s all related to how much excess weight they carry, as it can lead to swelling of the pharynx or soft palate which will then cause an obstruction in their airways.
Handy Hint: Here are 7 signs that your Frenchie is overweight, and how you can help to manage them back to a healthy weight.
Many French Bulldogs will stop snoring as soon as their weight is back to a healthy level. Sometimes just losing a couple of pounds can make a huge difference to the snoring problems.
10. Keep them well exercised
Aside from dietary changes, the best way to get your Frenchie’s weight down will be regular exercise. I recommend a couple of walks a day of around 15 to 20 minutes, and then plenty of playtime when you’re at home too (here’s how Frenchies like to play).
It’s not just swelling of the pharynx or soft palate that will reduce their snoring. Exercise will also help to reduce any fatty build-ups in their throat area, giving the airflow more freedom, therefore reduced snoring.
Handy Hint: I’ve published a list of the best French Bulldog toys that will keep your dog mentally and physically active. All the toys are popular with our own Frenchie.
11. Consider their medication
If your French Bulldog is on any current medication you might want to ask your vet if this could be the cause of the snoring. Many canine medicines contain chemicals that can create airway obstructions by relaxing muscle tissue in the throat and creating snoring vibrations.
The type of doggy meds that commonly lead to snoring include antihistamines, muscle relaxants, pain killers, and sedatives.
12. Check for blockages in the nose and mouth
Anything that constricts your Frenchie’s airways or narrows the breathing passages will create snoring problems.
If your French Bulldog has suddenly started snoring, then it could be something stuck in his throat. Perhaps they chewed some grass, or snorted something up into their nasal cavity.
It’s not just things that they pick up and chew though; tumors can also develop in their breathing passages.
Tumors are more common with older dogs who might not have snored before. If snoring badly is a new thing, check the mouth and throat and then get booked in to see your vet.
13. Check for any signs of infection the mouth or nose
It might not be a foreign object or tumor though. French Bulldogs will start snoring more if they have a cold or allergy, creating an infection in their mouth and nose.
If your Frenchie is snoring and has a runny nose or sneezing, it’s time to get a check-up with the vet.
14. Check their teeth for abscesses
Dental problems can also lead to snoring. You need to regularly check your Frenchie’s mouth and teeth for decay and particularly abscesses. They can limit the air flow in your dog’s mouth.
Abscesses can be easy enough to spot; look for any loose teeth, inflamed and swollen gums, bleeding, or lumps in and around gums and tongue.
Handy Hint: Bad breath will often be the sign of a health issue, with the type of smell being an indicator to what it could be. Here’s what a bad breath smell can mean.
15. Could be the sign of another illness
I’ve covered a few illnesses that could be the cause of your French Bulldog snoring problem, but let’s just re-cap on what they could be, with some additional ones that vets say lead to nightly snorts.
- Airway blockages
- Brachycephalic syndrome
- Cold or flu
- Dental problems
- Fungal infections
If you suspect your Frenchie has a health problem combined with the snoring, please don’t take any chances and speak to your vet.
16. Don’t use a human remedy
You will find a lot of people saying you can to stop your French Bulldog snoring by using homeopathic treatments. Please ignore these people.
The American Veterinary Medical Association actively discourage the use of homeopathic snoring treatments over solutions provided by a veterinary professional.
“Given that all medicine involves balancing risks against benefits, the case against homeopathy seems clear. There is a conspicuous absence of evidence of benefits despite centuries of use and investigation. And there are real risks, not to mention ethical concerns, associated with substituting an ineffective therapy for truly beneficial medical care. The balance seems unquestionably weighted against treating homeopathy as a legitimate veterinary therapy.”
Homeopathic treatments that are designed for humans should never be administered to a dog. Some treatments (for example herbal remedies) could lead to a bad reaction in your Frenchie. Just don’t do it.
17. Change their sleeping position
And now for one of the most obvious suggestions which I quite rightly left towards the end of my Frenchie snoring solutions. I am sure you’ve already tried this, but if you haven’t try to move your French Bulldog when he starts to snore.
Just like us, a Frenchie lying on his back will snore more than if he is asleep on his side. It’s all to do with how their airways are restricted.
When Frenchies sleep on their backs they will snore a lot more.
Your French Bulldog will stop snoring as soon as you re-position him. Be careful though, sleeping dogs can react badly when suddenly woken up, especially if they are dreaming.
Plus, it will only be a temporary respite. He will most likely start snoring again after a few minutes!
18. Don’t let them sleep in your bed or room
Whilst this tip won’t stop your French Bulldog snoring, it will give you some peace and quiet. I refuse to let Claude sleep in our bed or even in our room at night. I cannot handle how loud the snoring is, and simply won’t have it.
Every night we let Claude on our bed whilst we watch TV. When it’s time for us to go to sleep, we take him downstairs to his own bed in the kitchen.
But, if you really can’t bear to be without your Frenchie at night, you might want to invest in some ear plugs!
19. Opt for a surgical procedure
Then there’s the last resort; French Bulldog snoring surgery.
If the problem is adversely affecting your dog’s health and quality of life, your vet might recommend surgery. This will typically only be recommended if your Frenchie is experiencing breathing problems including choking and gagging.
According to research, up to 74% of dogs who had surgery to open their airways up more still did snore during sleep, but the severity of the snoring was reduced (view study).
French Bulldog snoring surgery
Now you’ve read all the tips on how to get a French Bulldog to stop snoring, I wanted to explain the last one in a bit more detail; the surgical solution and remedy.
There aren’t many vets who will perform a surgical procedure just because your Frenchie has an annoying snoring habit. But they will consider it if your French Bulldog has breathing problems of which snoring is just one symptom.
The surgery is designed to correct stenotic nares (the medical name for narrow nostrils). Stenotic nares drastically reduce how much air flows into the nostrils, causing severe snoring problems in many Frenchies.
The procedure involves enlarging the nostrils by cutting out a wedge from each one. By removing some of the excess tissue, the nostrils will become wider and the elongated palates can be reduced in size.
It is a common procedure with brachycephalic breeds and is recommended to Frenchies with moderate to severe stenotic nares.
French Bulldog snoring surgery is usually a routine operation with a full recovery expected inside of a week. However, it can be quite an expensive operation and needs to be fully considered with advice from a professional before you go ahead.
The cost of French Bulldog snoring surgery
French Bulldog snoring surgery costs will vary. It’s dependent on how severe the problem is and what surgical method the vet will employ. In the US, stenotic nares surgery can cost from $250 to $1,500.
The two types of snoring surgery that could be performed include:
- Soft palate resection: $500 to $1,500
- Stenotic nares resection: $250 to $1,000
What causes French Bulldogs to snore?
But why do Frenchies snore so much in the first place?
Well, I’ve written a guide previously which details why French Bulldogs snore which gives some detailed insight. But if it’s just a short answer you’re after, here’s what Dr Werber, a Los Angeles based vet has to say:
“As we breed dogs to have shorter snouts, the soft palette in the back of their throat doesn’t change, and that can be a problem. A lot of factors can go into your dog’s snoring, especially when they’re a breed with a smaller snout. How your dog’s body is positioned when sleeping, the shape of the dog’s neck, and the length of its nose are all factors that can influence a dog’s breathing. It can all contribute to the snoring” (view source)
As a brachycephalic breed, French Bulldogs are high on the list of dogs who have all these physical traits, leading to snoring problems which can be hard to stop without a surgical intervention.
It’s unlikely that you will ever be able to stop your French Bulldog snoring completely. After all, their breeding has dictated that this will always be a problem, and as owners we need to take a degree of responsibility for creating this market.
However, there are some snoring remedies you can use which I’ve listed in this guide which can go some way to alleviating the problems a little.
Give your Frenchie a comfortable and clean place to sleep, reduce exposure allergens, keep them fit and healthy, and think about what they sleep on.
French Bulldog snoring surgery will often be the only solution that will work, but it needs to be carefully considered with advice from your vet.