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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 28934
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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My dog (chocolate lab) has a wheeze like cough and only

Customer Question

my dog (chocolate lab) has a wheeze like cough and only happens when she is moving around. Its off and on and does not happen when she is laying down. She has not been around other dogs at all and just started happening Tuesday night.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Could be a lot of things that cause lethargy. The Veterinarian will know how to help your dog. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: bailey and shes almost 4 years old
JA: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Bailey?
Customer: the first night it happened so did puke up a little dog food.
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: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

A mild cough with a terminal retch (her "puking up a little dog food") in such a young dog is consistent with a contagious respiratory infection such as infectious tracheobronchitis (Bordetella bronchiseptica bacteria +/- parainfluenza virus, usually), the more serious canine influenza, and a sterile bronchitis similar to chornic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) in people. Please note that these infection agents are airborne and even if Bailey hadn't intimately associated with other dogs within the last 3-10 days (the incubation period for these infections), she still could have been exposed to these infectious agents. in most cases I'll "watchful wait" because an otherwise normal dog is expected to remiss unaided within 1-3 weeks when infectious tracheobronchitis is present. Canine influenza, however, can progress into pneumonia and so you need to be cognizant of her behavior over the next week or so. In general, as long as her respiratory rate remains under 40 breaths/minute her lungs should remain clear and she wouldn't need to to be attended to by her vet.

Failure to improve over the initial week or, indeed, worsening should prompt a visit to her vet who will carefully asucultate Bailey's heart and lungs and perhaps recommend X-rays of those areas. There are too many possible differential diagnoses for a wheeze-like cough to list in this venue but a careful exam and X-rays should clarify the etiology.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.

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