stenotic nares

Spring seems to have sprung a few weeks earlier than expected out here, and the dogs & I have been loving every minute of the warmer temperatures. Our front porch is cleaned off, the porch rocking chairs are ready for use, and the dog’s ‘outside bed’ is laundered and ready for the season! We’ve spent quite a few afternoons lately sitting on the porch together, watching the world go by. I think Oslo & JB would agree with me when I saw that it’s truly my happy place.

Other than welcoming Spring, I do have a bit of news for you all::

We have decided to go ahead and have Jersey’s ‘Stenotic Nares’ operated on.

‘Stenotic Nares’ is a common ailment in smushed-faced dogs like pugs & frenchies. It essentially means narrowed, squeezed nostrils. Having narrow nostrils can present a lot of issues… Most obviously of which, they make breathing quite difficult. Dogs with Stenotic Nares often snore loudly, breathe with their mouths open, and don’t tolerate heat or physical exertion very well. Not only that, but the constant struggle to simply get air into their lungs can lead to pretty scary issues over time– collapsed larynx, obstructed airways, and even hypertension. Imagine if YOU had to breathe out of a nose that was pinched half way (or more!) shut! It would be misery.

Surgery costs about $700, and is fairly simple. They will put Jersey under, then they will cut away and widen his nostrils. Very literally, they made them wider. A few stitches will be put in, and that’s that. Most surgeries take 10-15 minutes tops, and recovery takes just a couple days. It’s a VERY straight forward procedure.


I would have loved to do it a long long time ago (it’s actually ideal to do this surgery while the dog is young– perhaps during their spay or neuter).. But with Jersey’s heart issues, my vet(s) & I have never felt comfortable with the idea of anesthetizing him for it. However! Since he surprised us all and did SO well with his neuter & tooth extraction last fall, we really think it’s worth while to attempt this surgery now as well.

Of course, as with all surgeries, there are risks. Anaesthetizing him again scares me a lot— sure, he did great last time, but what if we are not so fortunate this time? What is he totally crashes while going under, or coming out of the anesthesia? What if he gets a terrible infection afterwards? What if he suddenly swells up, and his airways totally block off? WHAT IF WHAT IF WHAT IF!! Surgery is always super scary! On a more shallow note– I worry about how the wider nostrils will make his face look. He’ll look different! I don’t want my baby to look different! Waaaaaah!

Ultimately, though… Correcting his Stenotic Nares will help us to avoid some pretty scary, awful health issues in the future, thus increasing my chances of keeping this bundle of love with me for a long, long time longer. In addition (and perhaps, more importantly?) fixing his Stenotic Nares and thus improving his ability to breathe, will HUGELY improve Jersey’s general, day-to-day well being. His quality of life as a whole will be increased across the board. He’ll be able to breathe easier, enjoying playing more, sleep better at night because he can actually breathe at night, lay out in warm weather longer, etc etc etc. For those reasons, I think it’s an absolutely worthwhile risk to take.

Jersey’s surgery is April 22nd. Prior to surgery, we will do a full blood panel to make sure that he is in tip-top condition and surgery ready. Send good vibes his way!


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