He is taking a lot of short breaths, almost like he's panting but not. When he does take a deep breath, it seems to take a while for him to start the short breathing again.
Thank you for your post!
Regarding breaths per minute, this can be quite variable between dog, age, and even breed. In general, at rest with good breaths. on average a dog will breathe about 10-15 times per minute.
With activity, excitement, fear, anxiety, or other causes such as this, the rate can increase and be normal.
The reason is that dogs pant primarily to regulate their body temperature (to get rid of heat) - unlike peolpe, they really do not sweat...so panting is their primary way of getting rid of heat, espcially larger, long haired dogsAlthough that would be the primary, and physiologic reason for this behavior, there may be certain problems that cause this abnormally- Problems with the lungs (pneumonia, fluid, even tumors)- Heart abnormalities (murmur, arrhythmia, or even heart failure)- Pain or anxiety- Electrolyte imbalances- Kidney issues- Endocrine disease (Cushing's Disease) where the body produces to many steroids- Certain medications such as corticosteroids- Sometimes even diabetic dogs pant more than usual.- etc.If you feel your dog is breathing abnormal, panting excessively, and at time that you would not expect, I would recommend seeking veterinary care - with your primary veterinarian or local ER if your veterinarian is not open.