How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Jane Lefler Your Own Question
Jane Lefler
Jane Lefler, Breeder,Behaviorist, formerVet Asst
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 18815
Experience:  Former vol Vet Assistant.Breeder 18+ years Dog trainer / behaviorist
Type Your Dog Question Here...
Jane Lefler is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I have an older lab who over the last few days has not been

Customer Question

i have an older lab who over the last few days has not been able to breathe very well if hes doing anything but laying down. I know he has tumors but was wondering why this happened so sudden
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. This sounds like it might be serious. I'll let the Veterinarian know what's going on ASAP. Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about the dog?
Customer: Im considering euthanasia but want to try any last thing..Very arthritic so trip to ver almost out of the question
JA: OK. Got it. I'm sending you to a secure page on JustAnswer so you can place the $5 fully-refundable deposit now. While you're filling out that form, I'll tell the Veterinarian about your situation and then connect you two.
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 4 months ago.

Hi JaCustomer,

My name is ***** ***** I’ve been involved professionally with dogs in the health and behavioral fields for over 18 years. It will be my pleasure to work with you today.

In order to supply you with an informed answer, it is necessary for me to collect some additional information from you. When I receive your response or reply, it will likely take me between 30-45 minutes to type up my reply if I am still online when I receive notice that you replied. I hope you can be patient.

How old is your dog?

Does he have any known health problems?

Where are these tumors located?

Are they beneign or cancerous?

Is he inside in the air conditioning or elsewhere?

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
My dog is 11
tumors are all over body
vet tested one last year and it was non cancerous, but she asked if I wanted to test further. I said no. I didnt want to know.
yes, he is in air conditioning and is fine laying down in that.
When he gets up he begins to wheeze and struggle to get air in.We are entering his end of life stage and I simply was wondering if there was like a medication that can open his airway..But, youre not a vet?
Expert:  Jane Lefler replied 4 months ago.

No I am not a vet. I have worked as a Vet assistant and been involved in dog health care, breeding and hehavioral fields for over 20 years.

Many dogs develop tumors late in life and your dog is definitely at the end of his life span. Labs have a general life span of 10-13 years but often develop quite a few health issues when they get older. They often develop arthritis that makes it uncomfortable to rise. They can also develop degenerative myelopathy that affects the spin and makes movement difficult as well and can lead to a loss of sensation in the rear and incontinence, etc.

These condition can lead to stress and pain which can cause excessive panting. Dogs can also develop congestive heart failure like humans do. So to answer your question, depending on the cause for her difficulty breathing, there could indeed be a medication that might help such as enalapril or lasix that might help reduce fluid buildup that can lead to problems breathing. Read more on treatment of congestive heart failure here:

It would require that your vet do some imaging of the chest to determine if this is congestive heart failure. I would start there. I do know how hard it is to let your dog go and recently had to euthanize one of my own. It is a hard decision and usually is based on the dog's quality of life. If there are things he still enjoys and he isn't in pain all the time, it probably is not quite time. Most owners seem to know when that time comes as the dog can not do anything they enjoy and usually are in pain that even medication can not relieve. Now you might help him with rising by using a sling when he wants to get up. That might help if he has some arthritis. Getting up is the main problem when a dog has arthritis. Once they are up and moving around the discomfort is relieved a bit.

I hope this information is helpful to you. If you would like any additional information or have more questions please don’t hesitate to press the reply to expert or continue conversation button so I can address any issues you still have . If you do find this helpful, please take this opportunity to rate my answer positively so I am compensated for my time.