How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask PitRottMommy Your Own Question
PitRottMommy, Veterinary Nurse
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 7836
Experience:  15 yrs experience in vet med, 8 in emergency med. Founder of a non-profit animal rescue
Type Your Dog Question Here...
PitRottMommy is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My 12 YO australian shepherd/rotweiler mix has been licking

Customer Question

My 12 YO australian shepherd/rotweiler mix has been licking her front paws a lot, has labored breathing, lethargy, loss of appetite, coughing, and appears to have lost a little weight.
JA: Thanks. Can you give me any more details about your issue?
Customer: The coughing is not constant, and kind of sounds phlegmy. Yesterday was the first day she didn't eat. Coughing, licking paws has been for about a week, but not constant.
JA: OK got it. Last thing — Dog Specialists generally expect a deposit of about $19 to help with your type of question (you only pay if satisfied). Now I'm going to take you to a page to place a secure deposit with JustAnswer. Don't worry, this chat is saved. After that, we will finish helping you.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  PitRottMommy replied 1 year ago.

Thanks for your question. I'd like some additional information from you?

1) What state to you live in?
2) Has your dog been boarded, groomed or been to the dog park in the last 3 weeks?
3) Is your girl on heart worm prevention? If so, what kind and how often is it given?
4) Any other dogs in the household? Are they exhibiting similar signs?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
live in maryland
not boarded but yes, groomed in the last 3 weeks-month
yes, heart worm; monthly, got last dose it end of january 2015
yes, one other dog, no symptoms
Expert:  PitRottMommy replied 1 year ago.

Excellent news. So the first thing we're going to worry about in her case is kennel cough. Although she may be current on her kennel cough vaccine, dogs can still acquire this (nothing is 100% no matter how dedicated we are to their routine). I recommend contacting the place that performed the grooming and informing them that you're concerned that she has acquired kennel cough from their facility and will be taking her to a vet's office for an exam. In many cases, if your vet agrees that she has kennel cough and the time line fits, the grooming facility will cover the expense of treatment. This is why it's not only important to call, but you also want to give them a heads up that extra disinfecting measures may need to be taken and other dogs may well have been exposed aside from just her.

Kennel cough usually onsets 7-21 days after exposure. We typically hear a deep, honking, often productive cough along with lethargy, fever, increased desire to sleep (which seldom happens since they're coughing so much) and reduced desire to eat and drink (the worst cases involve a pet no longer eating or drinking at all). The treatment is usually pretty straight forward in placing the pet on antibiotics to prevent pneumonia, cough suppressant and/or expectorant. Many vets will switch to a smelly, high palatability food to keep them eating. The licking of her paws may be compulsive from the stress of the kennel cough or it may be something allergy-related. If it does not stop after treatment has been ended, I would work on finding an antihistamine that may work for her. See the following link: If antihistamines don't work, progress into more advanced therapies like allergy medications on the market now such as Atopica or Apoquel.

If my answer has helped you, please take the time to leave positive feedback. This is how experts are compensated for their time with each customer. If questions remain, please reply and I will help you further.

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

Related Dog Questions