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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 20878
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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My golden retriever is wheezing like she has something in

Customer Question

My golden retriever is wheezing like she has something in her throat she can't cough up and she had a snotty runny nose.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. Coughing can be worrying. The Veterinarian will know what you should do. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: Summer. 8
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Summer?
Customer: No
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your wee one’s situation, and wanted to help.

Again I do apologize that my colleagues could not aid you sooner, but can you tell me:

How long has she had these signs?

Is she throat clearing, coughing, or gagging?

What color is the snot? Is it from one or both nostrils?

Any chance she ate something abrasive (ie plants, toys, stones, etc)?

Are her gums pink or pale/white? Any breathing changes?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
My dog has had the condition since Friday. I have been out of state and my son did not tell me until my return last night. She cannot bark and seems to be trying to clear her throat. The snot is clear. It was from one nostril. She ate fine last night. Her gums are bright pink. I have no idea whether she ate anything abrasive.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

Thank you,

First, I am sorry to hear that you were not notified that she has been unwell for a few days. Though its good to hear that her gums are normal and her appetite fine.

Now in regards ***** ***** signs, we do have a few concerns for Summer. First, these signs do fit with a potential upper airway infection (ie bacteria like Bordetella or viruses like Parainfluenza). Though with one sided nasal discharge, we also have to be wary of intranasal disease (which can cause throat clearing/irritation with post nasal drip and inflammation) from fungal infections, foreign bodies, polyps, and even tumors. So, we need to tread with care.

With this all in mind and since we do have one sided nasal discharge, it'd be ideal to have her vet check her at this point. That way we can just make sure there is nothing in her nose that needs urgent action. If there is, then treatments can be focused on what is present. Of course, if that is clear, then her vet can start antibiotics +/- anti-inflammatories to soothe any upper airway infections for her.

Otherwise, if there is any delay in having her checked, we can at least start supportive care. To do so, you can soothe her throat and reduce her coughing with plain over the counter 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, this can reduce the irritation that is triggering her coughing fits and help let her rest until her check-up with her vet.

As well, you can try to flush this nostril to try to remove anything caught by using non-medicated saline nasal drops (ie Ocean Mist, Little Noses). You can apply 2-3 drops into the problem nostril to help loosen anything present.

Overall, your lass’s signs and history are most suspicious of a bacterial or viral upper respiratory infection but one sided nasal discharge does raise other concerns. Therefore, as long as her gums are pink, and is breathing comfortably; we would just want to soothe her throat with one of the above options +/- offer soft foods (to avoid any more throat irritation) until her vet is open.

All the best,

Dr. B.


If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need. Thank you and hope to see you again soon! : )

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
My dog has had her bordatella shots but she does go to a groomer weekly. Could this still be bordatella. I will be calling the vet as soon as they open.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.

Hi again,

It certainly could be, especially if she goes to a groomer where the dog population there is always changing. And I would note that if she is vaccinated, this may explain why she has mild signs instead of coughing to the point of making her sick.

Best wishes,

Dr. B.


If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond.

**Afterwards, I would be grateful if you would rate my service by clicking on the "Rate my Expert' button at the top of the page as this is the only way I am credited for helping you. Thank you for your feedback!: )

Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your follow-up. My son took her to the vet and she has a mild case of kennel cough. Evidently, there has been a real outbreak in our community. She was given cough suppressant pills and is doing much better. I am keeping her out of the groomers for two weeks. She has been there for over 5 years and never caught anything.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
You are very welcome,
I am glad to hear that was all and that she is now on treatment to get that settled.
Best wishes,
Dr. B