Why Does My Dog Cough In The Morning? (Solutions Included)

You wake up to the sound of your dog coughing. You know coughs can be a sign of illness, but you’re not sure why your dog is coughing in the morning.

Well, this post is for you! We’re going to go over why your dog might cough in the morning and what you can do about it.

But first, let’s dig into why does my dog cough in the morning:

Reasons your dog cough in the morning

There are a few reasons your dog might cough in the morning. Here are some of the most common:

1. Infectious Tracheobronchitis or Kennel Cough

There are a few reasons your dog might cough in the morning—and one of those reasons is infectious tracheobronchitis, or kennel cough. Virus or bacteria, even smoke from cigarettes, can cause kennel cough, and it’s highly contagious between dogs. They can also transmit it to other dogs and humans, so if you’re worried about catching it from your pup (source). So, it’s best to stay away from them until they’ve cleared up their infection.

Dogs who are infected with kennel cough will often be lethargic for a few days before coughing begins. They’ll then develop a dry, hacking cough that sounds like they’re barking when they inhale. The cough may sound worse when the dog is excited or after exercise. If your dog has this type of cough, it’s important to take him to the vet as soon as possible so he can get diagnosed and treated early on—the longer it goes untreated, the harder it will be to clear up altogether.

2. Pneumonia

Another reason your dog coughs in the morning is pneumonia. Pneumonia is an infection in your dog’s lungs, which causes them to become inflamed and fill with mucus and pus. This makes it hard for your dog to breathe. If left untreated, pneumonia can be fatal, so it’s important that you know how to treat it.

When your dog has pneumonia, his coughing will often start in the morning when he first wakes up. This is because as soon as he wakes up, his lungs are working harder than normal to clear out all the mucus and debris that accumulated overnight while he slept. If this happens every day (and especially if it happens more than once), then chances are good that your dog has contracted pneumonia.

3. Chronic Bronchitis

If your dog continues coughing in the morning for a couple of months, it could be because he has chronic bronchitis. Chronic bronchitis is an inflammation of the airways that causes coughing and wheezing. It’s not the same as asthma, which is caused by airway constriction, but it can be very similar in its symptoms.

As with humans, dogs can get chronic bronchitis from smoking or environmental pollutants like cigarette smoke. They can also develop it from inhaling allergens like dust or pollen. But chronic bronchitis can also occur for no known reason.

If your dog has chronic bronchitis, you might notice that he coughs in the morning and clears his throat when he gets excited. You may also see that he has trouble breathing or even drinking water (because of the coughing).

4. Heart disease

Coughing can be a symptom of heart disease in your dog, so if you notice your pup coughing when you go to wake him up in the morning, don’t ignore it! It’s important to know that heart disease can be present even if the rest of your dog’s vital signs seem normal.

Heart disease is a serious condition that can lead to permanent damage if not treated quickly, so taking your dog to the vet soon after noticing this symptom can save their life.

5. Allergies

One of the most common reasons for a dog to cough in the morning is allergies. If your dog coughs in the morning, it’s possible that he or she is having an allergic reaction to something in their environment—like pollen, dust, or another allergen.

If your dog has been coughing during the night as well, it’s likely that this is something more serious than allergies. In that case, talk to your veterinarian right away so they can help you figure out what’s going on and get treatment started.

The good news is that there are lots of ways to treat allergies in dogs, and the sooner you start treatment, the better chance you have of keeping your pup comfortable and healthy for years to come.

6. Lung cancer

Although rare, lung cancer can also trigger coughing in the morning. Lung cancer is a type of cancer that affects the lungs. It can also affect other organs near the lungs, such as the diaphragm (the muscular wall between your chest cavity and stomach).

When to worry if your dog coughs in the morning?

If you notice your dog is coughing, the first thing to do is check if they have a fever. If they do, go to the vet as soon as possible. If your dog doesn’t have a fever or other symptoms of illness, there are other things you can look for to determine whether their cough is serious.

The first thing to look for is whether their cough is getting worse. If it’s been happening for a few weeks and it doesn’t seem like it’s getting better, this may be a sign that something else is wrong with your dog.

If their cough becomes more frequent or if they have trouble breathing when they get sick, this could show that they have pneumonia or bronchitis and need immediate medical attention.

Another thing to keep an eye out for is if their tongue turns blue or purple while they’re coughing—this could mean that there’s something seriously wrong with their vital organs.

If your dog has been coughing but does not seem like he/she is getting worse and does not have any other symptoms of illness (such as vomiting or diarrhea), then it may just be an irritant in his/her throat causing them to cough up phlegm (like pollen). This type of coughing will usually go away on its own within a few days or weeks if followed good hygiene and sanitation.

What to do if my dog coughs in the morning?

If your dog coughs in the morning, it’s not always a sign of illness. Here are some things you can do to make sure that your pup is feeling just fine:

1. Consider the environment the dog sleeps in. The environment your dog sleeps in can affect the frequency of coughing. If your pup is sleeping on a surface that’s too soft or has a lot of dust or other allergens, it could irritate his throat and cause him to cough during sleep. Consider changing where your dog sleeps if he seems to cough more than usual.

2. Take your dog outside for a walk and get them moving. Sometimes coughing results from a bit of congestion in their lungs or throat, and if you get them moving it might help relieve the symptoms.

3. Give them some water to drink—it helps loosen mucus and make it easier to cough up, which can help relieve symptoms as well.

4. If they’re still coughing after following the above tips, call your vet! The cough could indicate more serious problems like pneumonia or kennel cough.

FAQs related to dog coughing in the morning

Here are the answers to some of the most common questions about dog coughing in the morning.

Why is the most common cause of my dog coughing in the morning?

The most common cause of a cough in dogs is respiratory infections. These are also called “kennel cough” because they affect more than half of all dogs who visit animal shelters and veterinary clinics.

Why does my dog wake up and cough?

If your dog wakes up coughing, it could be because of fluid building up in his lungs. This can happen when he’s had a cold or allergies, or it could show heart disease or lung cancer. A buildup of mucus around the bronchial tubes can also cause it. If you notice your dog has thick mucus coming from his eyes and nose, take him to the vet immediately.

When should I take my coughing dog to the vet?

If you notice your dog has fluid building up in her lungs or is experiencing difficulty breathing, take her to the vet immediately. You should also take her if she is coughing more than usual, experiencing worsening symptoms at night and in the morning, or if she has thick mucus coming from her eyes and nose.

Does kennel cough only happen in the morning?

No, it can happen at any time of day. However, kennel cough typically worsens at night and in the morning but better during the day.

When will the coughing in the morning of my dog go away?

It depends on the cause of your dog’s coughing. If the cough is because of allergies or an infection, then it will probably go away on its own once the underlying cause has been treated and the dog has recovered from any illness or infection. However, if your dog’s cough is caused by something more serious than an upper respiratory infection, such as heart disease or lung cancer, then it may be a sign of a chronic condition that will require treatment for the rest of your dog’s life.


Morning coughs are common in dogs, and they’re usually nothing to worry about. Often, dogs will cough when they wake up in the morning because they’re stretching and yawning. This can sometimes cause a lot of noise and vibration to happen in the throat and airway, which is what causes them to cough.

It’s important to note that if your dog is coughing in the morning, but not after eating or drinking anything—or at any other point during the day—then this could be a sign of something serious. You should contact your vet if you see your dog coughing frequently throughout the day, especially if it’s accompanied by any other symptoms such as vomiting or diarrhea.

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