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Tammy F.
Tammy F., Not an active Expert
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 9168
Experience:  Not an active Expert
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My dog is hacking/breathing heavy

Customer Question

My dog starting hacking after she ate dinner. And has been hacking/heaving breathing for over an hour. What could be wrong? I just got her from a shelter, and they say she is healthy...but I'm really concerned. She calms down, but then she starts up again. I wonder if she is just very nervous or has heart problems.
Submitted: 12 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Tammy F. replied 12 years ago.
 If she has been boarded at a kennel recently, it could be kennel cough, a common respiratory illness that is highly contagious.  Even if animals have been vaccinated, they will still get it if they are exposed.

Aside from that, tracheal problems and heart problems can also cause coughing, as can a general virus.

Any time that I hear of an older dog coughing, I immediately think of a heart problem, especially if the dog is not on heartworm prevention.

You should be pretty concerned.  I think that you should make an appointment with your vet as soon as you are able.

Let me know if you need more details or do not understand.