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Lisa, Certified Vet Tech
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 16544
Experience:  AAS Vet Tech. Bully breed rehab & Behavior modification
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my dog may have a collapsed trachea. she is a Maltese an has

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my dog may have a collapsed trachea. she is a Maltese an has that honk cough then she hacks up phlegm. she does this when she gets too excited, but not when she is exercising. she does pant but not all the time.
Hello! My name is XXXXX XXXXX it will be my pleasure to help you with your dog today.

Collapsing trachea is actually pretty common in small dogs. I have a maltese cross who has it and has an attack a couple times a week for years with no problems.


This can be a chronic, degenerative issue that could impact the health of the dog. You can find more information on this particular issue here( and although this is an article about small breeds, there are large breeds with this issue as well):


The other thing I was thinking was the possibility of this being some kind of cardiac cough. Dogs get congestive heart failure (also known as CHF) just like humans. This is when the heart doesn't pump as effectively as it should, which causes fluid to build up in the lungs, making the dog cough.


Tracheal collapse is normally treated with a cough suppressant and steroids, although many vets opt to not treat until the dog is showing a compromised respiratory system, and since your Callie is acting normal otherwise, I'm not sure that there is a problem with the respiratory system here...but it's always better to be safe than sorry.


There's another good site that goes over treatment options here:


If Callie were mine, I'd give my vet a call in the morning and have them take a peek and determine if they think she should be on some medication at this poitn.


I hope this helps!!

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Can they diagnose her without an endoscopy?



she is the sweetest as I am sure everyone says. she is spunky and loud (she loves to bark and growl at everything)


It happens now (in the last week, but less so than before) especially when I (ME) comes home and if I don't come to her pretty quickly, she will "honk"

I hope it's just medication at this point.


Absolutely. Most vets don't have endoscopy and will diagnose without it.
Lisa and 2 other Dog Specialists are ready to help you
Hi Pam,

I'm just following up on our conversation about Callie. How is everything going?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Lisa,

unfortunately not so good.

Callie has an enlarged heart and "honk" was caused by her pre-CHV.

I ended up running her up the the Animal ER because I just wasn't comfortable with her breathing and coughing. (panting) the ER vet says her chihuahua has CHV and it is being managed really well with meds.


I went immediately on Monday to the CVAC Vet Cardiologist who after her Echo said that she has thickening and a leaky valve and enlargment of some veins (I guess because it needed to pump harder) that it was CHV but not the"other side" where she has started to go into actual failure.


They prescribed at the ER Lasix (gave it to her IV) and Tubuterol for her cough. Then Monday I took her to my regular vet after the Cardiologist for senior blood panel (cheaper than at cardiologist) and made an appointment for a "well doggy check up"


She blood panel came back good! and they gave me two other drugs to start Callie on. One I started right away and the other will start 7 days from then after I believe the Lasix is through. I was given the Tufts University diet guidelines and am going to transition her diet over (she could stand to lose a little weight)


the worst part is she still has so much energy and trying to keep ehr quiet (which is easy, but I feel bad)


the prognosis they say is 18 months to 2 years, but I have read up on using holistic treatments in addition to her medication and dogs being around 4 years later.

Oh Gosh..I'm sorry to hear that Pam. I'll keep my fingers crossed for you and Callie.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

do you know anything about it?

anything about diet?