7 Tips for Treating Breathing Difficulties in Dogs
Breathing difficulties in dogs may be a sign of a bigger health problem, therefore it is important to conduct some diagnosis to be sure of the main underlying cause of such problems. Heart diseases, infections such as viruses, or parasitic and heartworm disease can be the main cause of breathing problems in dogs.
Other underlying conditions such as cancer, a collapsing trachea, trauma, Pleural effusion, chronic bronchitis and obstructions by foreign materials in the airway can also cause breathing difficulties. Here are some tips and ideas that can help you treat problems in your dog:
Perform a Medical Diagnosis on the Dog
Just before you go for any surgical or medication treatments, you need to take your dog to the veterinary doctor for proper diagnosis, this will ensure that you do not administer the wrong treatment on him. You need to ask the veterinary doctor some questions. For instance, you must be aware of the possibility of the breathing problem being transferred to other dogs or humans. (You can learn more about diagnosis breathing difficulties in dogs at Frenchiestore.)
Diagnoses in dogs are performed through several means. These include; taking blood counts, Serological tests to confirm infectious diseases, and Chest X-ray imaging to check internal airway and other breathing components.
Other diagnoses that may be carried out include: Echo-cardiography, which is an ultrasound check for the heart, the use of Electrocardiogram (ECG), and examination of fluid samples taken from the air passageway of the dog. The appropriate treatment administered will depend on the test results.
Always Perform Follow-up Tests
Many dog owners often ignore the need to perform follow-up tests once the conditions of their dogs have improved. Regardless of whether surgical treatments or medications were performed, it is important to perform follow-up tests to ensure that the breathing problem does not relapse.
In most cases, the same diagnostic tests carried out before treatment will be repeated to evaluate the response of the dog to treatment. In case the dog is not responding favorably, then some other tests will be conducted to confirm the real underlying cause of the breathing problem. Follow-up tests are as important as diagnostic tests, hence they must not be skipped.
A follow-up test is not just a procedure for measuring the response of your dog to treatment. It may be an ideal way to detect any other underlying medical problem that may get more complicated in the future.
Help Your Dog to Lose Some Weight
Certain breathing problems are associated with obesity. Extra body fat can put pressure on the air passageway, thus putting extra pressure on breathing. It is important to work out with your dog outdoors or make use of a special treadmill designed for dogs so she can burn some extra fat. This may take a while to show results but it will help. In general it’s wise to help your dog shed some weight even if its breathing difficulty is not associated with obesity.
Change Diets that Can Trigger Inflammation
Some breathing problems, including Chronic Bronchitis are caused by inflammation of the air passageway. While medications are mostly used for dealing with these problems, you may want to reduce chronic inflammation in the digestive system of dogs by ensuring that your dog doesn’t eat some foods that are only meant for humans. Buy specially formulated anti-inflammation dog food her.
Keep the Dog Indoor in Extreme Winter Conditions
Extreme winter conditions may worsen breathing problems in dogs. It is important that you keep your dog active indoors during such winter conditions, but that does not mean that he must remain indoors 24 hours per day. Certain breeds such as Border Collies are an outdoor type of dogs, but make sure they are well protected when outdoors in extreme cold.
Make Sure Your Dog Completed its Entire Course of Treatment
Some breathing problems may relapse when she does not complete its course of treatment. This is particularly prominent when dogs are placed on medications, like antibiotics for breathing problems caused by bacteria. Dogs must complete the entire treatment course even when it seems all the symptoms are gone and breathing has returned to normal. When problems relapse, it means the dog will have to start taking the medication all over again, which can cost you extra in the long run.
Improve Hygiene Around Your Home
If diagnostic results show that your dog’s breathing problem is triggered by allergic reactions, then you should consider a complete cleaning of your home and of the dog’s personal items. First of all, you need to identify the allergens triggering the breathing problems, and it would help to get a HEPA Vacuum filter that can be used to clean the surfaces of carpets and all furniture.
Make sure every part of the home that your dog visits is thoroughly vacuumed to reduce the risks of allergic attacks. Try as much as possible to improve ventilation in your home, to make it safer and cleaner for you and your dog.
It is important to pay attention to the symptoms of breathing problems in your dog. Rapid, labored breathing is perhaps one of the most severe symptoms you should pay attention to. Sometimes the belly of the dog may move more than normal, with the nostrils flaring up during breathing. In some cases, the dog may begin to breathe with its mouth opened, and in some cases, the elbows of the dog may stick out of its body during difficult breathing.
Noisy breathing is another symptom you should pay attention to. This is particularly the case when the dog’s breathing is shallower than normal. Heavy panting may not necessarily mean the dog is having breathing difficulties, as it is normal to cool off after a difficult exercise session.
Labored breathing in a dog may be a sign of Dyspnea, while rapid breathing may be a sign of Tachypnea. If the mouth is partially opened during breathing only occasionally, the dog may not have a breathing problem, but when it becomes more regular, then you must consider a medical checkup.