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Cher, Dog Caregiver--Extensive Experience
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 21416
Experience:  Extensive Experience Caring for Canines; Specializing in behavior and health concerns.
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my dog isnt coughing, but hes congested like he has a cold.

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my dog isn't coughing, but he's congested like he has a cold. he's young, but the other dog we have just came back from the shelter a week ago after being spayed so i'm worried. he is sneezing, his nose is wet from that, there is no running eyes nor phlegm being coughed up, specifically just his nose sounds congested. i've been breaking off little pieces of benadryl and administering 3 times a day, but he is a 4lb maltese so i don't want to over do it. are these allergies perhaps or could it be something more serious?

It's possible your dog has developed an upper respiratory infection or has allergies. However, his symptoms may be indicative of a more serious problem, so it's always best to have the vet see him in person.

Benadryl is an antihistamine which may help with sneezing and other URI/allergy symptoms, but it is not a decongestant, so it will not alleviate congestion. Here are guidelines on the appropriate dosage and information re: side effects with Benadryl, in dogs:

For the moment, you can run a humidifier in the room your dog spends the most time in, to help with congestion.

Because your other dog was spayed at the shelter so recently, it IS possible that your dog has contracted a viral or bacterial infection from her, as you suspect. The only way to get a definite diagnosis and most appropriate treatment, is to have your dog evaluated by the vet, in person, as soon as possible.

I hope all will be well.

Cher and 2 other Dog Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX did make an appointment with the vet, but I cannot take him until tomorrow a.m. b/c of my work schedule. I wanted to also let you know that we have 4 dogs in the house, they have all started to get congested. I have also read you can put them in a room after you run a hot shower to help with the congestion, like you said about the humidifier.

I don't think its kennel cough or the parainfluenza b/c none of the dogs have the coughing symptoms, and I don't think its too serious (yet) because he is still playing with the other dogs and running to bark at doorbells, squirrels, etc. However, I wanted to hear some advice about this b/c I have never had a dog get sick with a respiratory infection before, and it feels so sad to listen to your dog struggle with congestion!

Thanks for the links and I appreciate the care you took to respond to my question.
Hi again, and you're most welcome. Thanks very much for your reply and your accept.

I didn't recommend putting him in the steamed up bathroom, just in case he may have any unknown heart conditions, like cardiomyopathy; I don't want to alarm you, just to inform. Coughing may be an initial symptom, but since you said he's NOT coughing, and neither are any of your other dogs, it's most likely not heart-related.

If he's not coughing and your other dogs are also beginning to exhibit these same symptoms, it's most likely a URI that's going through your canine household, brought in by your female, after her spay. It's not uncommon for a dog to bring home and share her germs, after time at the vet's office.

Do your best with the humidifier and bring him to the vet tom'w, as you mentioned, and if you want to bring them all into the steamed up bathroom, it should be alright. I hope all your furry buddies will be fine!

Cher (sending this as a 'request for information', just so you're not prompted to click 'accept' an additional time)