Should I be worried about my dog getting hiccups? Not at all! This is a common reaction for both us and dogs, so there’s nothing to worry about. We’ll make a breakthrough of how and why your dog gets hiccups for you to rest assured.

The Reasons Your Dog Gets Hiccups

Dogs, as well as humans, have an organ called the diaphragm. This organ is located in the stomach and enables respiration by contracting and relaxing. Whenever the diaphragm spasms, the breathing cycle gets interrupted, and the hiccups appear.

There are several reasons why this happens. These are the most common ones: 

Eating or Drinking Too Fast

When dogs eat or drink too quickly, they mistakenly swallow air. This air then enters the stomach instead of the lungs and irritates the diaphragm, which results in hiccups and rumbling noises from the stomach. To avoid this, it is important to teach your pet to eat calmly.

Moreover, the diaphragm also gets irritated when eating very hot or cold food. Take this into consideration when preparing their meal.

Stress

Stress has many effects, and one of them is rising one’s heartbeat. It may rise to such an extent that you’ll need to pant to inhale more air. Dogs are no strangers to this condition.

Your pet will breathe through their chest instead of their diaphragm while stressed, which results in diaphragm irritation and consequently hiccups.

Heavy Panting

After long sessions of playtimes or when they are too excited, dogs need time to rest. To catch their breath, they’ll inhale through their chest and will then provoke the same reaction of being stressed: irritated diaphragm, hiccups.

Nevertheless, heavy panting alongside hiccups can also be caused by other reasons; for example, dog dehydration. If your pet is panting heavily, examine their behavior and be on the lookout for other strange symptoms.

Heartburn

Whenever dogs eat or drink something with gas, some of that gas goes up and makes their esophagus upset.

To counter this excess of gas, the dog’s stomach produces hiccups to get rid of that gas. Since heartburns are commonplace, don’t consider stopping the hiccups. It’s a healthy reaction and the most natural way to fight acidity.

Medicine

Pills are known to hold adverse effects behind them, so don’t feel surprised if your dog gets hiccups after taking medicine. It’s fairly normal.

Medications, such as antibiotics, supplements, and steroids, may induce stomachaches and diaphragm irritation. However, vets that prescribe these medications are aware of their consequences. They know what they’re doing, don’t worry.

How to Get Rid of Hiccups

Hiccups are a common reaction to a minor health problem. But if it doesn't go away after a few minutes, how do we get rid of it?

Milk

Milk is quite effective for reducing acid flux. Why? Milk consists of many proteins. Among them is casein, which dissolves chemical components that are usually found in spicy food and acidic fruits and vegetables.

Belly Rubs

Sometimes, dogs need a bit of rubbing on their bellies to calm down their stomachs.

When hiccups are present, breathing patterns become a mess. Hence, belly rubs relax your dog while vanishing diaphragm irritation. This is also helpful when your dog is restless, for example, when they suffer from separation anxiety.

Stomach Distention

There are certain dishes that may help an irritated stomach.

Bread, grains, and rice are great for fighting an upset stomach full of gas. These meals swell in the stomach and produce stomach distention. This reaction makes gas digestion easier and stops the diaphragm from having spasms.

Slow Eating

If your dog eats or drinks too quickly, it’s high time you teach them how to slow down.

There are many bowls for both water and food that display certain patterns so as to reduce how fast your pet can eat. You can also teach them how to eat at slower paces, of course, by using verbal praise and treats to encourage healthier eating habits.

Water

Despite general disbelief, drinking water is effective against heartburn. However, there is one condition: your dog must drink water after eating. Water helps the stomach dissolve acid minerals, but may raise the acidic value of a meal if drank while eating.

When Should I Worry About My Dog’s Hiccups?

In general, hiccups don’t last more than an hour. If your dog still has hiccups after that, then yes, you should be concerned.

Hiccups are not a disease, but a symptom. When dogs get hiccups for hours, it usually means there is an illness that affects the digestive system. The possibilities are many, it could be mild overexertion to gastroenteritis.

However, hiccups are always a threat to dogs that suffer from respiratory problems and weak stomachs. Hiccups disrupt breathing cycles, so dogs with asthma will find breathing troublesome, whereas in weak stomachs hiccups are an alarming sign.

Observe your dog’s behavior carefully to evaluate whether they need to go to the vet or not. Your pet’s health is a delicate matter, so don’t drag your feet when their lives could be in danger!

Be the caring owner your dog rightfully deserves!