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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16202
Experience:  Hello, I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
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Dog rapidly breathing with growling noise after surgery last

Customer Question

Dog rapidly breathing with growling noise after surgery last night
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
She is 11 and has a stage 4-5 heart murmur. She had surgery for an aurotoma on her ear.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Shes a mixed breed. Looks like a border collie. About 30 lbs
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.
Based on the signs you are reporting, your lass's breathing and behavior is suggestive of has experiencing discomfort from her operation. In this case, if her vet did not provide pain relief to go home (or has and she is still sore), then it'd be ideal to ring them now and request they dispense an further pain relief for her now. I would just note that we do not want to give any human anti-inflammatories to her in this case. This is because most are toxic to dogs. (And unfortunately those human pain relief options that we would use like Tramadol or Bupenorphine are prescription only). Even Aspirin, which we do use on rare occasion would not be safe (since it is a blood thinner and therefore isn't ideal after a surgery) in this case.
Overall, her signs are unfortunately suggestive of discomfort from this. Therefore, it would be ideal to contact her vet to address this for her and ensure that we get her comfortable with her ear.
Just in case you need a local emergency vet, you can check @ http://www.vetlocator.com/ or via
http://www.veccs.org/index.php?option=com_hospitals&nationid=1&Itemid=193
Please take care,
Dr. B.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What would cause the growling while she breathes? She is on pain meds.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What anti infamitory is toxic? I'm pretty sure she is one one...
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hi again,
What pain relief is she on?
How much and how much does she weigh?
When was she last dosed?
In regards ***** ***** growling, this just tends to be a pain related behavior (as is an elevated breathing rate). If she had been snoring more or if this had started shortly after she was awake from the procedure, then we'd have to consider airway inflammation or drug induced disorientation. But with this having been done yesterday, confusion from the drugs or airway inflammation would be less likely here.
Otherwise, I was saying before that human anti-inflammatories can be toxic to dogs. That is why we have to use dog specific ones like Metacam, Rimadyl, Onsior, Deramaxx, Previcox, or similar ones with dogs.
All the best,
Dr. B.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I am not around the medication now but she is on several. For heart disease and now the surgery. She refuses to drink water and or eat and she isnt growling but when she breaths it sounds like growling. Like congestion.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you,
So, do you think it is congestion from her upper airway? Or actual growling? (Since as I noted above there are a few different potential sounds that they can make)
Are her gums pink or pale/white?
Can you take a breathing rate for me (just count her breaths for 10 seconds + multiply that by 6)?
If you have any doubts on what sounds she is making, can you video it for me and post it on YouTube? If you can and paste the web link here, that will let me see/hear what you are witnessing and help determine what is amiss with your lass.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It sounds like congestion. She breaths 71 times in a min while resting.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Thank you,
In that case, this is very different from growling. If she sounds congested, while we would expect airway inflammation to be on the wane at this stage (especially if she is on a dog specific anti-inflammatory), we have a complication with her having advanced heart disease. In fact, if she sounds congested and is showing an elevated breathing rate (since 71 bpm is >2x normal for a dog's resting breathing rate), then I would be concerned that any minor inflammation lurking is taking a bigger toll on her. As well, we'd have to question if this recent anesthetic has potentially strained her heart at all or if it has triggered a fluid build up in lungs.
Therefore, with your further information and this not actually being growling, it does change our concerns here. So, we'd be more concerned about possible airway inflammation, fluid build up in the lungs, or strain on the heart being at the root of her signs. Therefore, if she is breathing this quickly, we are again in a precarious position and would need to consider touching base with her vet about whether we can give her a bit more of her diuretic +/- anti-inflammatory to address those potential issues for her and get her breathing more comfortably.
Please take care,
Dr. B.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok, I know all of this already. I'm wanting to know if it signs an emergency visit or not.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
If she is breathing this fast, I would consider having her seen at this stage. You didn't confirm a gum color, but if they are pale as well, then that would be a red flag of poor oxygenation and therefore emergency.
All the best,
Dr. B.
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