Do Dogs Lose Their Voice?

Do Dogs Lose Their Voice?

While dogs may not talk like humans, they are certainly capable of making a wide range of sounds. From barks and growls to whines and howls, dogs use their voices to communicate their needs and emotions. However, dogs can also lose their voice, just like humans. The medical term for this condition is laryngitis, which can be caused by several factors, including infection, inflammation, or irritation of the larynx (voice box).

Dogs with laryngitis may have a hoarse voice, sound raspy when they bark, or be completely mute. In most cases, laryngitis is fairly mild and will resolve on its own within a few days. However, dogs with severe laryngitis may require Veterinary care. If your dog is having trouble vocalizing, it is always best to err on the side of caution and have them examined by a Veterinarian.

Let’s look at some of the most common reasons dogs lose their voice.

Psychological Issues

It’s not uncommon for dogs to lose their voice after a bout of barking or other forms of vocalization. However, if your dog suddenly loses its voice and can’t seem to bark or make any other noise, it could be suffering from a psychological issue. Psychological issues that can cause dogs to lose their voice include anxiety, fear, and stress.

When dogs are anxious or stressed, they may try to vocalize less to avoid making sounds that could further increase their anxiety levels. In some cases, dogs may even stop barking altogether. If you think your dog’s sudden loss of voice could be due to a psychological issue, it’s important to talk to your veterinarian about possible treatment options.


Dogs can lose their voice for several reasons, but infection is one of the most common causes. When dogs get sick, their vocal cords can swell, making it difficult for them to bark. In some cases, the swelling may be so severe that dogs cannot make any noise. While this is typically not a serious condition, it can be very frustrating for dog owners who are used to their pets’ constant barking.

If your dog’s voice seems to be getting softer or disappearing altogether, it’s important to take them to the vet to rule out any underlying health problems. Most dogs will regain their voice with proper treatment within a few days.


One of the most common causes of dogs losing their voice is an injury to the larynx or voice box. This can result from trauma, such as being hit by a car or prolonged exposure to loud noises. Dogs who work as hunting dogs or police dogs are particularly susceptible to this type of injury. In addition to laryngeal damage, dogs can also experience voice loss due to nerve damage or paralysis, viral infections, tumors, and other health conditions. If your dog suddenly loses its voice, it’s important to contact your veterinarian for an evaluation.

Throat Hoarseness

The most common cause of throat hoarseness and voice loss in dogs is laryngeal paralysis, a condition that affects the muscles that control the movement of the larynx (voice box). Other causes include vocal cord injury, tumors, and damage to the nerves that control the larynx. Treatment for voice loss in dogs will vary depending on the underlying cause.

For example, dogs with laryngeal paralysis may require surgery to correct the problem. However, many dogs with vocal cord or nerve damage can be successfully treated with medical therapy. If your dog is losing its voice, it is important to have it evaluated by a veterinarian to diagnose and treat the cause properly.

Larynx Collapsing

Many people are unaware that dogs can suffer from larynx collapse, leading to voice loss. The larynx is a cartilaginous structure located at the base of the throat that contains the vocal cords. These cords vibrate when air passes through them, producing sound. In dogs, the larynx is supported by a group of muscles and ligaments.

However, if these muscles and ligaments weaken, the larynx can collapse. This can cause the vocal cords to lose their tension and vibrate less efficiently, leading to a hoarse or raspy bark. In severe cases, dogs may even lose their voice entirely. Larynx collapse is most commonly seen in toy breeds such as Chihuahuas and Pomeranians, but it can affect dogs of any breed or size.

If you notice your dog’s bark sounds different or is having difficulty making noise, be sure to take them to the vet for an evaluation. Larynx collapse can be treated with surgery, but it is important to catch it early for the best chance of success.

Symptoms of Dogs Losing Their Voice

Symptoms of dogs losing their voice may include a change in pitch or volume of the dog’s bark, hoarseness, coughing, or difficulty breathing. In severe cases, dogs may be unable to bark at all. Treatment for dogs losing their voice depends on the underlying cause and may involve antibiotics, steroids, or surgery.

Dogs with milder forms of laryngitis may simply need rest and plenty of liquids. However, any dog having difficulty breathing should be taken to a veterinarian as soon as possible, as this could be a sign of a more serious condition.

Which Dog Breeds Are Most Prone to Losing Their Voice?

Some dog breeds are more prone to developing problems with their vocal cords than others. Breeds that are particularly susceptible to losing their voice include the Basset Hound, Beagle, Boston terrier, Bulldog, Cairn terrier, Labrador retriever, and Yorkshire terrier. These dogs often have physical characteristics that make them more prone to vocal cord damage, such as short snouts or narrow throats.

In addition, some of these breeds are also predisposed to certain health conditions that can lead to voice loss, such as laryngeal paralysis or tracheal collapse. While any dog can lose its voice temporarily due to injury or illness, dogs in these breeds are more likely to experience long-term or permanent vocal cord damage.

Final Word

It is not uncommon for dogs to lose their voice. If your dog has lost its voice, the best you can do is take it to the vet. While you might try adjusting your pet’s diet, which might even help, you can never reach the root cause of the problem. Vets use their experience and also run some necessary tests which help them figure out why your dog has lost its voice.

They may carry out necessary treatments, prescribe some medicines, or maybe things might not be as severe as you think. Whatever the case is, don’t skimp on the monthly or weekly trips to the vet.

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