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Doc Sara
Doc Sara, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 952
Experience:  I am a dog and cat veterinarian with a lifetime of experience in our family veterinary hospital.
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Our yellow lab seems to have a slight throat obstruction and

Customer Question

Our yellow lab seems to have a slight throat obstruction and maybe soreness. She won't eat tonight, which is unprecedented for her (and the breed). She's not herself.
Recently we were on a trail in the woods (she runs, I mountainbike), but she seemed fine throughout and afterwards. She's very fit. Recently she ate a paper-towel that had had food on it. It could have gotten caught in the bottom of a sinus? Not sure.
Thanks for any help you can offer.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Doc Sara replied 1 year ago.

Hi there, I'm Dr. Sara. 'm a licensed veterinarian who works exclusively with dogs and cats. I'm sorry to hear that your pup hasn't been feeling well tonight.

When I hear owners of labs say that their lab sounds like they've got increased airway noise, one of the first things I think of is laryngeal paralysis. This is a disease that causes noisy upper airway breathing - it sounds like it's in their throat. Dogs with laryngeal paralysis will have more noise when they are excited, exercising, or hot. Your question about the paper towel is a valid one - while it's possible that she's gotten some foreign material stuck in the back of her throat or nasal passages, that is a pretty uncommon diagnosis. The most important thing at the moment is to be sure that she's breathing comfortably with no distress. Also, it's important that her gums should be bubblegum pink. If she's having difficulty breathing or has pale or blue/purple gums, those indicate the need for an emergency exam. Otherwise, it's likely OK to wait until you can talk to your own vet in the morning. It could be that these things are unrelated and she's just at the beginning stages of a GI upset - they can get infectious stomach bugs, or - as you well know - eat stuff that can upset their stomachs. I've also seen dogs with upper respiratory infections have a bit of noisy breathing - these can be viral and clear on their own or they can require antibiotic treatment. Also if a dog has a growth or a mass of any sort (including something like an abscess, which is completely treatable) in the throat area, they can have some increased upper respiratory noise.

I hope that this all blows over on its own, but if not I'd suggest having her examined. Please let me know what questions I can answer for you.

~Dr. Sara

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