Many owners ask me why their husky hiccups so much. Hiccups are normal for us humans, but what about your husky? This article should calm some nerves and answer all of your questions on this topic. Let’s get into it.
Huskies can get hiccups just like humans can. Reasons for hiccups include “fetal hiccups”, eating or drinking too fast, getting excited, breathing heavily as well as stress and anxiety. Hiccups are usually harmless and will pass.
Is It Normal For Huskies To Hiccup
Okay, so first of all, hiccups are entirely normal for huskies (as well as all other breeds) and there are many reasons why hiccups can happen.
It must also be said, however, that excessive hiccups could be an indicator of an underlying issue. But before you worry, this is very rare and most hiccups are harmless and will pass.
Hiccups are particularly common for husky puppies to experience, and there are some additional reasons as to why this might be. Let’s run through the common causes below.
4 Main Reasons Huskies Get Hiccups
Hiccups happen in huskies when the diaphragm involuntarily contracts/spasms causing the opening between the vocal cords to close sharply.
And when this happens, it causes an audible “hic” sound. This is also how hiccups happen in humans.
So why? Scientists still don’t fully understand why it happens, but they have some very good theories.
1. Fetal hiccups
One theory, which would explain why puppies hiccup a lot more than adults would be fetal hiccups.
Science has revealed that puppies along with other mammalian species actually hiccup inside the womb. Some experts believe this to be training the diaphragm muscle in preparation for breathing.
Yet, the hiccups accidentally continue to happen long after being born. Source
2. Eating or Drinking Too Fast
If your husky eats or drinks too fast, especially soon after exercising, hiccups are likely to happen. Hiccups can be a way to relieve gas, much like burping or passing wind.
The main issue with eating or drinking too fast is that your husky puppy or adult will accidentally ingest too much air.
Fast eating and drinking should also be avoided because it could cause a serious health issue/emergency called bloat (which is a whole different topic altogether).
3. When Getting Excited
Another cause of hiccups is simply when your husky becomes excited.
We don’t really know why this happens but it could be due to the muscles suddenly working too hard, or due to your husky panting quickly and erratically.
If this is the case, hiccups would likely stop soon after your husky calms down again.
Husky puppies, in particular, get very excitable in short bursts and also can’t control their breathing as well as an adult. This is another theory as to why puppies hiccup more than adults.
4. Stress or Anxiety
Additionally, Dr. Audrey J Wystrach, ZippiVet Veterinary Practice in Austin Texas has noted that stress and anxiety can also be a common cause of hiccups in huskies and other canines.
This could be a temporary moment of stress or long-term underlying stress. Source
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Can You Help Your Husky To Stop Hiccupping?
So after the hiccups have stopped being funny, most owners want to know if they can do anything to help stop them.
In most cases, there isn’t much you can do and the hiccups should go away with time.
There are of course many DIY remedies that we are familiar with like, holding your breath and getting someone to make you jump.
Although, these have never been proven to work, and it’s certainly not recommended to try anything like this with your husky. Who would likely be more offended by that, than from the hiccups themselves!
If you want to try and help your husky get over hiccups, here are some tips:
1. Gentle belly rub
As the hiccups could be caused by erratic breathing or from being overly excited. You can try to calm your husky down by giving him a slow and gentle belly rub. This should regulate a steady breathing pattern and help reduce hiccups.
2. Provide a distraction
Try giving your husky a teaspoon of honey smeared onto a plate. This will provide a safe distraction from the hiccups and could be enough to slowly reduce them. Avoid giving any solid food or treats as this could provoke or make his hiccups worse.
3. Remain calm
As stress and anxiety can also bring on hiccups is crucial for you to remain calm and relaxed. Remember that most of the time hiccups are harmless and will pass. If you become overly worried, your husky will pick up on this and it could potentially make the hiccup issue worse.
4. Offer water
Like with humans, sipping water can help resolve hiccups. Of course, it’s not as easy as saying to your husky “just a few sips”. But never the less, guide him to his water bowl and see if he would like to drink some (it helps to replace his water in front of him).
5. Use a slow feeder
This is more a preventative tip you can use in the future. I strongly recommend getting a slow feeder, as well as a raised food bowl. Both of these will reduce the amount of air ingested and might be the solution to your husky’s hiccupping habit.
What If The Hiccups Don’t Stop? When To Call Your Vet
It’s very common for veterinarians to receive calls about how their dog won’t stop hiccupping.
The guideline for dealing with this issue is to call your veterinarian if your husky maintains hiccupping for more than a few hours OR the hiccupping is accompanied by anything else such as wheezing or difficulty in breathing. In this case, either call or visit your veterinarian for further assistance.
If you believe your husky needs veterinary help right away, you can of course call them as soon as you feel necessary.
Exercising common sense is always advised, and if there is a logical reason as to why your husky is hiccupping (he has just exercised, got excited, eaten, or taken a drink) then most of the time the hiccups will go away without further action.
In very rare situations, hiccups can be a sign of an underlying health problem such as heat stroke, asthma, pneumonia, or pericarditis. Source PetMD
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