Bulldogs, pugs, and Boston terriers can make excellent companions, but the signature “squished” appearance of these brachycephalic breeds can come with some serious health complications. “Brachycephalic syndrome” is the term given to the collection of structural airway defects that are common in these breeds. One such defect is stenotic nares, or narrow nostrils. In this dog surgery spotlight, we explore the surgical options available to correct stenotic nares.
Dog Surgery Spotlight: What Are Stenotic Nares?
The term “stenotic nares” refers to nostrils (“nares”), which are abnormally narrow. There are varying degrees of this condition, from slightly-smaller-than-usual nostrils to those that are fully collapsed. Malformed nostrils can cause loud or difficult breathing. Combined with the other breathing issues common in brachycephalic dogs, stenotic nares can cause significant discomfort, wheezing, and collapse. Some companions who have stenotic nares may develop everted laryngeal saccules, which occur when labored breathing forces structures in the larynx to swell and obstruct the airway.
Diagnosing Stenotic Nares
Although stenotic nares are present at birth, many companions do not begin to display clinical signs of the condition until they reach a few years of age. A veterinary professional can typically diagnose stenotic nares during a physical exam, but there are a few symptoms that guardians should watch for if they have a brachycephalic companion. Cyanosis, or a blue tongue and gums, is one of the more alarming symptoms of stenotic nares and brachycephalic syndrome and is caused by a lack of oxygen. Loud breathing that worsens in hot weather or during exercise is another trademark.
Dog Surgery Options for Stenotic Nares and Related Conditions
Various surgical procedures can restructure the nostrils and make them more open: laser ablation, punch resection, and alar wing amputation are just a few options available to correct stenotic nares. Because dog surgery and recovery present challenges for any companion, your veterinary surgeon may suggest multiple concurrent procedures to address your canine’s brachycephalic syndrome. This can include surgical treatment for an elongated soft palate and everted laryngeal saccules. However, each case is different, and your veterinary surgeon may recommend allowing a significant recovery period between any necessary procedures.
Trust Maryland Veterinary Surgical Services With Your Companion’s Health
Your companion’s health is important, and the team at MVSS is ready to provide the best care possible for your furry family. We are dedicated to combining comprehensive exams and assessments with informative and honest discussions of your companion’s care. Once we have worked with you to decide on the best course of action for your dog, our professionals will use their surgical expertise to work towards the goal of giving your companion an active and pain-free life. We are proud to serve loyal companions in Catonsville and Baltimore. To learn more about our services, give us a call at 410-788-4088 or visit us online. For more information and tips for pet health, follow us on Facebook and Pinterest.