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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 24382
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience
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I have a 12 year old toy Pomeranian..he has what I've been

Customer Question

I have a 12 year old toy Pomeranian..he has what I've been told is black skin disease and only has very little of his coat left. I noticed yesterday that he was breathing differently....it's very quick....I counted 30 something breathes in a minute. What is most likely the cause? He doesn't appear to be in pain...his appetite hasn't been great yesterday and today.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

I believe you're referring to alopecia-X in Poms. The cause of this alopecic condition is unknown and, yes, the alopecic skin may become hyperpigmented. In any event, an increased respiratory rate isn't associated with that dermatopathy. In general, respiratory rates in excess of 40 breaths/minute at rest are worrisome but if his appetite has suffered as well, his change in breathing may be significant. At 12 years of age, Buster is more at risk for age-related cardiopulmonary disorders such as congestive heart failure, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (sterile bronchitis, e.g.), and neoplasia (cancer) in the chest cavity. Unless this breathing change abates unaided, it would be prudent to have Buster's vet carefully ausculate (listen to) to Buster's chest and perform a 3-film X-ray study of Buster's heart and lungs.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.
Hi Linda,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Buster. How is everything going?
Dr. Michael Salkin