Cleft Palate in Dogs

Palate is the roof of the mouth. A cleft palate is referred to the condition of an abnormal opening in the roof of the mouth due to the failure of the two sides of the palate to come together and fuse during embryonic development causing an opening between the nasal passages and the mouth. Beagles, Cocker spaniels, dachshunds, German shepherds, Labrador retrievers, schnauzers, Shetland sheepdogs, and brachycephalic breeds are predisposed to this condition.

Certain symptoms commonly expected with a cleft palate include:

Runny nose


Aspiration pneumonia caused by milk and food contents entering the cleft and infecting the lungs

Respiratory difficulty

Difficulty sucking and nursing

Slow growth

Weight loss

Lack of appetite

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