Every dog has unique quirks, but when pet owners notice behaviors they didn’t experience with other pets, it’s normal to be concerned. Burping is one of many dog behaviors that owners wonder about. Questions surrounding this include, “is it normal for dogs to burp,” and “what causes a dog to burp?”
Let’s explore burping in dogs, discuss why dogs burp, and whether the behavior is normal for your dog.
Is Burping Normal for Dogs?
Generally speaking, it’s normal for dogs to burp. As mammals, dogs burp to release extra air from their stomachs, just like humans do. When it happens once in a while, it’s nothing to be concerned about.
However, there are times when your dog’s burps may be concerning. Let’s look at some of the main causes of burping in dogs. We’ll also cover whether your dog’s burping is normal or something to discuss with your veterinarian.
Causes of Burping in Dogs
Most of the time, burping is the result of swallowing too much air when a dog eats or drinks. There are, however, other factors that play a role in how often your dog burps.
Dogs with especially flat faces burp more often than other dogs. Flat snouts can lead to dogs swallowing more air when they eat, so it’s common to have a flat-faced dog burp after eating.
Additionally, when a dog eats too quickly, he or she might gulp down more air than other dogs. Because of this, greedy or anxious eaters will likely burp more than slower, calmer eaters.
A dog’s diet may also contribute to how often the animal burps. For example, ring-shaped kibble pieces may add to the amount of air the dog swallows. Other times, the size of the food pieces can increase the amount of air in the stomach.
Finally, low-quality diets, allergies, or high-alkaline food may increase a dog’s burps.
When a dog has eaten trash, he or she may burp more due to having an upset stomach. However, eating trash causes far more health concerns than burping. Trash-eating can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, GI blockage, pancreatitis, or even poisoning.
An imbalance in your dog’s gut bacteria may also cause him or her to burp more often. Digestive problems like this create gasses in the stomach, which can escape as a burp.
If a dog starts burping suddenly, followed by gagging/vomiting and a swollen abdomen, it may be a sign of GDV. GDV or “bloat” is a condition where a dog’s stomach twists and fills with air. It's life-threatening so if you notice signs of GDV, seek veterinary care right away.
How To Reduce Dog Burps
If your dog’s burping is a concern, there are a few things you can do to try reducing the problem naturally.
- If your dog burps after going for a walk, he or she might be pulling on the leash hard enough to press on their airway. Pressure on the airway may cause the dog to gulp air whenever possible. If you want to reduce your dog’s ability to pull on the leash, try using a no-pull harness instead.
- Your dog may be eating too fast, and in that situation, food bowls with labyrinth-like designs in them can slow the pet down.
- For dogs with flat snouts, a tilted dog bowl might be helpful in preventing extra air gulping.
- Elevating your dog’s food and water bowls so that they’re chest-high can reduce air gulping. Less gulping reduces burping and can lower a deep-chested dog’s risk of having GDV.
- Check your dog’s ears, eyes, paws, and coat for signs of food allergies. Along with burping, you may notice itching, flaky skin, watery eyes, and inflamed ears or paws. If this is the case, talk to your veterinarian about your concerns and ask for advice on how to change your pet’s diet.
- Keep trash covered and stored out of reach. This way, your dog won’t eat non-food items that upset his or her stomach.
Dogs are different from humans in many ways, but sometimes our similarities shine. Like humans, dogs get upset stomachs. While we can take an antacid or avoid eating certain foods, dogs are not able to reason in the same way.
As pet owners, it’s up to us to pay attention to our canine companions and watch for changes in their behaviors. Seeking professional help when their needs go beyond our skill level comes with the territory.
If you’re concerned about your dog’s burping, you’re doing the right thing by searching for answers. Chances are, your dog is healthy and happy, but to ease your mind, it might be time to talk to your vet about your pet’s burping.
Disclaimer: Joyride Harness is not affiliated with medical professionals. Consult your veterinarian with any medical concerns.