Do American Bullies Have Breathing Problems?

American Bullies appear to be strong and healthy due to their muscular build. However, these dogs are prone to developing various health problems, especially with their breathing.

Do American Bullies have breathing problems? American Bullies do have breathing problems. American Bullies are a brachycephalic breed, which means that they have flat faces with short snouts and small nostrils. Their facial structure will cause them to have some difficulties with breathing which can escalate to a more severe health problem.

Continue reading to learn more about how to know when your American Bully has a breathing problem and what to do about it.

Do American Bullies Have Breathing Problems?

a photo of a bully with its mouth open to show that American Bullies do have breathing problems

American Bullies do breathing problems because they are a brachycephalic breed, which means they have flat faces, short snouts, and partially or fully blocked nostrils.

Even though their facial structure gives them a cute look, it also makes them more prone to having breathing problems.

Their airways are also narrower, and their tongues are bigger compared to the size of their mouth. So, there won’t be enough room for the air to get in and out easily.

There are various reasons why American Bullies might have breathing problems other than their facial structure, such as:

  • Developing respiratory disorders including laryngeal paralysis, pneumonia, and lung tumors.
  • Suffering from heart failure as the heart will not sufficiently pump blood to the dog’s lungs. This will put pressure on the lungs and prevent them from inflating.
  • Having an allergic reaction or exposure to toxic materials.
  • Exposure to extremely high temperatures leading to overheating or heat strokes
  • Feeling a strong emotion such as anxiety or fear. 

How to Know If Your American Bully Has Breathing Problems?

In order to know if your American Bully has breathing problems, there are certain signs you should be on the lookout for. So, let’s take a quick look at those signs:

  • The dog will be panting or breathing heavily, even when it’s doing simple activities.
  • The dog will breathe mostly with its mouth partially open, which will cause excessive drooling. 
  • The dog’s gums will turn to a pale or blue color. 
  • The dog will start coughing excessively or make other noises such as snorting, wheezing, snoring, or retching.
  • The dog will suffer from a sudden lack of energy and appear to be in a general state of distress or pain. 

If you notice any of these signs in your American Bully, it’s highly recommended to take it to a vet for a check-up as soon as possible. The earlier you determine the cause, the easier the treatment will be.

What to Do If Your American Bully Has Breathing Problems?

If you recognize that your American Bully has breathing problems, you need to take it to a vet to determine the condition causing the breathing problems. 

The treatment for the dog’s breathing problems will vary depending on the condition causing them. In some cases, the dog will require surgery to make it breathe freely without any issues. In other cases, the dog will only require some medicine and oxygen supplements.

What Other Health Problems Are American Bullies Prone to Have? 

Even though American Bullies appear to be strong and healthy, they’re prone to have many health problems over the course of their lives.

So, let’s take a close look at some of the most common health problems among American bullies that their owners usually report.

Hip Dysplasia

Hip dysplasia is one of the most common health problems that American Bullies suffer from. Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent it as it’s a genetic health issue. 

It happens when the dog’s bones develop faster than the muscle that is holding them. So, any increase in weight will lead to bone deterioration and hip joint strains.

Hip dysplasia can only be treated in two ways. The first is through weight management, and the second one is through surgery of a hip replacement.

Heart Diseases

American Bullies are also prone to developing heart diseases. You can reduce the risk of these diseases, but you cannot prevent them.

The most common heart disease in American Bullies is “heartworm,” which is caused by a parasitic worm. This disease can lead to organ damage and heart failure, and if it’s not treated early, it will eventually cause death.

Reducing the risk of heart diseases can be done by managing the dog’s weight and improving its diet. It’s also important to take the dog for regular check-ups and monitor its behavior for any symptoms.

Skin Problems

American Bullies have sensitive skin, which makes them prone to developing various skin problems. This leads to various symptoms such as severe itching, redness, dryness, and excessive hair loss.

The treatment will vary depending on the severity of the problem. Luckily, most skin diseases can be avoided through proper grooming and using dog-friendly shampoos. Check out the best shampoos for American Bullies here.

Eye Problems

American Bullies might have some eye problems. One of the common conditions is known as cherry eye, which affects the third eyelid, causing inflammation and itchiness.

This condition is very uncomfortable for the dog as it will constantly be scratching at its eye to relieve the itchiness, which could lead to wounds or infections in the eye area. Luckily, it can be treated surgically by removing the displaced gland.

Related Questions 

When Should You Worry About Your American Bully’s Breathing?

You should worry about your American Bully’s breathing if you notice symptoms like excessive coughing, heaving breathing, panting while doing any physical activity, or having difficulties with eating and swallowing. These symptoms could indicate a severe health problem.

Is It Normal for American Bullies to Breathe Heavily? 

It is normal for American bullies to breathe heavily because they are a brachycephalic breed with flat faces and short snouts. However, if they are consistently breathing heavily and displaying other symptoms, they might be suffering from a more severe health condition.

What Is Considered A Normal Breathing Rate for American Bullies?

A normal breathing rate for American Bullies ranges from 10 to 35 breaths per minute. They might breathe more heavily when they’re active; however, if they start to breathe heavily while they’re at rest, then they might be suffering from a more severe health condition.

Helpful Resources 

4 Common Health Problems In Bully Breeds

My Top Picks for American Bullies!

PitbullsHome Personally-Tested Picks for Pitties:

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