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Why do dogs pant?

Updated on June 13, 2009

Why do dogs pant?

With this hub. I will attempt to explain why it is that dogs pant. Other than driving you nuts there is actually a very real and important reason why dogs pant when it is hot.

Panting dogs

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Panting, an explanation of why.

A question posed by many is why do dogs pant? This seemingly frantic and sometimes annoying behaviour must have its reasons. Other than driving their immediate surroundings insane with the loud breathing noise.

Well, actually panting is completely natural to dogs. You see dogs, whuile dogs do sweat, it is not very much and the little they do actually acts as to heat them up further. By panting the dog creates a continuous flow of fresh air in their mouth.

While that previous statement might sound a bit silly. It actually is not. You see, just like with you and I, the dogs blood circulates around its body and since a lot of that circulation is situated around its head. Allowing cool air to flow by cools the blood as it passes by and thus cools the rest of the body as well. Kind of like when you use a fan in the summer.

Do dogs overheat easily?

Yes, they do. Because panting is the only effective way for the dog to cool itself it is prone overheating if left in very hot places. Even if it is just for a relatively short period of time. In extreme cases this can result in the death of the dog.

The questions then becomes. What can I do to prevent my dog from overheating?

First of all. Make sure the dog has access to a cool place or some shade. Also make sure it has access to plenty of fresh water. Just like yourself. It gets thirsty quick when it is hot outside. Second, make sure the dogs environment is well ventilated. Allowing fresh cool air to flow and cool the dog and the area it resides in.

Dog Panting and Yawning

Dog panting

Bichon Frise panting


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    • esocial profile image

      esocial 9 years ago from California

      You did a good job of explaining :) My dog says, "Woof (pant, pant)!"

    • Dog Obedience Tra profile image

      Dog Obedience Tra 9 years ago from Uk

      Great advice, and some very interesting points. Thanks for that.

      I agree with making sure dogs have plenyt of water, whether its summer or winter, and anything inbetween.

      Some breeds of dogs do pant more than others too. Some reasons for that are of course, human indused.

      With the genetic tampering that has gone on though the centuries, some breeds have a real hard time with breathing, causing them to pant much more.

      Anyway, you have some good information. I've given you a "thumbs up", which you deserve.

      Pop by my Dog Obedience Training hub for some great advice and information. It would be great for you to add your professional advice and comments!

      Wishing you great success. Sincerely,

      John from Dog Odedience Training

    • trakker14 profile image

      trakker14 10 years ago from franklin

      How very important this really is!  water is a big part of a dogs life. I had a dog overheat once and it wasn't pretty, took a lot of cooling  baths to bring him back to where he was stable. Very scarey.