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My 6 lbs shih tzu is coughing shaking and whining. She is…

My 6 lbs shih...

My 6 lbs shih tzu is coughing shaking and whining. She is also sort of clingy. The only thing I can connect is that she got into pancake syrup my kids left out on a plate.

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. Coughing can be worrying. The Expert will know what you should do. What is the dog's name and age?

Lucy she is 14 months old

Veterinarian's Assistant: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Lucy?

I gave her some water and she isn't really coughing anymore...now she just stretches her neck and mouth somewhat like a yawn

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Answered in 2 minutes by:
6/2/2018
Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 23,478
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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Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.

How long has she had these signs?

Is it a harsh or soft cough?

Can she take any food and keep it down?

Any nasal discharge? What color? From one or both nostrils?

Are her gums pink or pale/white?

Can you take a breathing rate for me (just count her breaths for 10 seconds + multiply by 6)?

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Just for a couple of hours
Its was a harsh cough until I gave her water. Now every now and then she does what looks like she is yawning
I put food in her bowl but doesn't want it...she got a hold of my kids waffles so I'm sure she's not hungry...but it make me wonder if it's connected to that. No discharge. Breathing 36.
Customer reply replied 2 months ago
She has calmed down now and no longer shivering or coughing...but she just seems sad. Not latharginc at all though.

Hi again,

First, I would note that thankfully that breathing rate is only slightly elevated but do check her gum/inner eyelid color to make sure its pink (as that tells us she has good oxygenation). The reason is because the stretching of her neck is a bit worrisome and can be something we see with throat discomfort but also breathing compromise. So, check that and if she is pale/white, we want her seen urgently. If not, we can try some supportive care as this isn't likely from what she ate but may be a hint of a brewing throat infection or inflammation.

With all of this in mind, we do need to monitor her closely and can try her on a mild cough suppressant like glycerin/honey cough syrup (with no drugs in it) or even plain honey. Both can be very soothing to the irritated and tickly throat. Typically we will give a 1-2 milliliter (~1/4-1/2 teaspoon) as needed. Alternatively, you can try Robitussin DM with her. I would just say to make sure to use this preparation and avoid any similar syrups that may contain other medications like Paracetamol, Acetaminophen, Pseudoephedrine, Phenylephrine or caffeine (since these can be toxic). If it also contains Guaifenesin that is okay. Dose-wise, we tend to give this as 1/2 (half) teaspoon per 10lbs of the dog's body weight every 8-12 hours. Again, these can reduce any possible irritation driving her to cough. Furthermore, if she has a throat irritation, then soaking her kibble or offering soft foods may also help reduce her signs. And if it is just inflammation it will likely settle on its own. But if this lingers or she starts to breath heavier, has pale gums, or seems distressed then we'd want to have her seen.

Kind regards,

Dr. B.

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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 23,478
Experience: Hello, I am a small animal veterinarian and am happy to discuss any concerns & questions you have on any species.
Verified
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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
She has pink gums. Very good color.

Lovely, that is just what we want and we can just use the above and keep an eye on her. :)

All the best,

Dr. B.

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Customer reply replied 2 months ago
Thank you!

You are very welcome. :)

Have a lovely weekend,

Dr. B.

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