Last Updated on March, 2024
Imagine waking up one day to see your dog sitting in a corner, opening and closing his mouth non-stop.
Now you are scared that he’s possessed. Creepy right?
Not to worry. It’s not like some horror movie scene coming true.
In this article, we are discussing all the possible reasons why your dog keeps opening and closing his mouth rapidly. Here’s all you should know to resolve your worries till you see the veterinarian.
We will address the FAQs and possible treatments. So keep reading.
Some common causes include dental problems, choking on a foreign object, neurological issues, stress and anxiety, or simply communicating with their owner.
It’s important for dog owners to pay attention to other symptoms and seek veterinary advice if the behavior persists, as it could be a sign of a more serious underlying issue.
Some potential causes for a dog opening and closing its mouth are easily treatable, such as removing a foreign object or addressing anxiety, while others, like distemper or ingestion of toxic substances, require immediate medical attention.
Table of Contents
- Reasons Your Dog is Opening and Closing His Mouth
- Your Dog Has Food Stuck in His Mouth
- Your Dog Has a Dental Problem
- Difficulty Breathing or Choking
- Your Dog Has Neurological Problems
- Some Foreign Object in His Mouth
- Your Dog Has Nausea and Bloating
- Your Dog is Talking to You
- Stress and Anxiety
- Your Dog is Very Cold
- Your Dog is Smelling Something
- A Symptom of Distemper
- Your Dog Has Eaten Something Nasty
- Your Dog is Just Excited
- Your Dog is Exhausted and Panting
- When You Should See the Veterinarian
- Final Thoughts
Reasons Your Dog is Opening and Closing His Mouth
We have compiled 14 reasons for your dog’s weird mouth and jaw movements.
Your Dog Has Food Stuck in His Mouth
Maybe your pup is trying to clean his mouth after eating. It’s as simple as that.
Food particles can get glued to the teeth and gums, causing discomfort to your dog. So, it feels the urge to open and close its mouth to get the residue out.
Help your dog to clean his mouth by brushing. Of course, be careful not to get bitten if you have a naughty little pup.
Your Dog Has a Dental Problem
Just like us, your dog can also get a toothache or a chipped tooth. So he feels like opening his mouth to reduce pain.
They get periodontal disease, an abscessed tooth, lesions, and bumps, causing a strange feeling in the mouth.
All they know is making weird mouth movements, wishing that you’d notice.
Checking your dog’s mouth at home is challenging. Only veterinarians can see every nook and cranny to heal any dental issue.
Difficulty Breathing or Choking
Your dog will show these signs if he cannot breathe:
A respiratory disease like pneumonia can be the culprit if he’s opening and closing his mouth to breathe.
Your dog can be choking on a chunk of meat or one of those little toys. Follow the Heimlich Maneuver to save a choking animal.
Learn how to perform the Heimlich Maneuver from this video:
Your Dog Has Neurological Problems
There are other signs when a dog is having a seizure:
Watch out for these warning signs if your pup is opening and closing his mouth repeatedly. You should see the Vet immediately.
White Dog Shaker Syndrome
You should pay attention, especially if you have a small white dog, as they inherit this disease. These are the other symptoms:
Opening and closing the mouth, accompanied by the above signs, is a medical emergency.
Some Foreign Object in His Mouth
Pups tend to sniff around and put things in their mouths. They will be coughing, anxious, restless, and biting into the air if there’s anything stuck.
You should check your dog’s mouth to see if these signs appear.
Get help from a veterinarian to save them from choking.
Your Dog Has Nausea and Bloating
Gastric Dilatation Volvulus can happen when your dog’s stomach fills with gas, food, or fluid. This can become fatal if left untreated.
Just like humans, pups also get nauseous and experience gagging sensations. Stomach pain can be a culprit, too. They may keep opening and closing their mouths as a result.
Your Dog is Talking to You
Dogs tend to mimic the way we speak, and it’s pretty normal. Vocalization is a common behavior resulting in opening and closing their mouths.
Don’t worry if they growl and make noises to reply to you.
Your pooch loves attention. Pretending to talk is a way of showing love and grabbing attention.
Stress and Anxiety
Is your dog scared of seeing the Vet or getting the shots?
You will see him moving his mouth in stressful situations. It’s just like us biting nails or tapping feet.
Don’t worry if you can confirm that your dog is reacting out of anxiety.
If he doesn’t have medical conditions, just let him relax.
Your Dog is Very Cold
Of course, your pup will experience chattering teeth and jaw movements when he’s cold, just like us.
Dogs have a temperature of around 101 degrees Fahrenheit. If the temperature drops, their bodies react by shivering and shaking.
These dog breeds easily get cold. They need to wear coats during winter:
Your Dog is Smelling Something
Dogs often chatter with their teeth after sniffing.
Scent molecules go deeper into their vomeronasal organs as a result.
Your dog is a lot more sensitive to smell than us. They have millions of scent receptors.
So it’s no wonder your dog is reacting to some intriguing smell by opening his mouth.
A Symptom of Distemper
Have you ever seen a poor pup with these warning signs?
Distemper is a contagious viral disease that causes these symptoms. Opening and closing the mouth can appear with this.
Vaccination is essential for preventing Distemper.
Vets treat the disease with antibiotics.Your dog can catch this from infected dogs or wild animals like ferrets, skunks, and raccoons.
Your Dog Has Eaten Something Nasty
Do you have a naughty pup who tries to eat everything?
The following categories can be harmful to him.
These categories act as pet poison and cause stomach pain, gagging, and vomiting. So watch out if your dog is opening and closing his mouth repeatedly.
Your Dog is Just Excited
Does your pooch open and close his mouth when you take the leash to go for a walk?
And when you open a box of treats?
Chances are he’s happy and excited.
Just like you, your pet has to express his emotions. Nothing to worry about!
Your Dog is Exhausted and Panting
Maybe your dog is just thirsty after playing and needs some hydration. Give him water, let him rest, and see whether his mouth movements have stopped.
Did your pet recently give birth to some puppies?
Then, Milk Fever is one possibility, as it causes heavy panting and trouble breathing.
When You Should See the Veterinarian
Is your pet repeatedly opening and closing his mouth without a good reason?
It’s best to have the Vet check on your dog. You will have peace of mind, and your pet will be safe.
Only a Vet can accurately decide what’s wrong.
Other guides and tools you might need when training your dog:
Your dog’s repetitive mouth opening and closing could stem from various causes, ranging from simple behaviors to serious health concerns.
While some instances, like excitement or cold, are harmless, others, such as dental issues, choking, or neurological problems, require immediate veterinary attention.
Remember, observing your dog’s overall behavior and seeking professional advice is crucial. Stay vigilant, but also remember that not every odd habit is a cause for alarm.
Your awareness and prompt action can ensure your furry friend’s health and happiness.
Was this article helpful?