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Candy, Veterinary Technician
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 11619
Experience:  Practicing Veterinary Technician for 26 years.Previous Veterinary Practice Owner, Technician Trainer
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My dog has bad smell in his mouth, thick mucous-y saliva and

Customer Question

My dog has bad smell in his mouth, thick mucous-y saliva and he seems to have trouble swallowing - i.e. he gags sometimes when he eats, hacks out food and continues eating.
He also seems to have a runny nose and gets dry crusty boogs, that I have to clean out because they sometimes get crusty and seem to clog his nose.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Pet
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
My dog is possibly 12-14 years old (he's a rescue and we don't know his real age). He does have allergies and skin issues so he has to take daily meds to keep the skin under control. He's big - 105lbs and has had digestive issues with food - have to keep him on a strict diet with no changes or he gets diarrhea.He seems to be breathing heavy through his nose.
Expert:  Candy replied 1 year ago.

Hello. I am sorry to hear your boy is having some trouble. My name is ***** ***** I would be happy to help.

How long has this been going on?

Can you see anything stuck in the mouth ( check the roof of the mouth as well) any missing or broken teeth or tarter build up.

Expert:  Candy replied 1 year ago.

I apologize it looks like some of my questions got cut off. Any coughing, change in his bark or panting?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
just coughing occasionally. He never really barked, but he hasn't barked for at least a year. He whines sometimes when he wants something sometimes, but it's rare. He's never made a lot of sounds, but lately, nothing. A lot of his teeth were broken or worn down when we got him. The vet thought he may have been chained and tried to chew out of the chain. Not sure.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No panting. And, he snores like a full grown man now.
Expert:  Candy replied 1 year ago.

Thank you. Please give me just a few moments to type up your answer.

Expert:  Candy replied 1 year ago.

In a senior dog there are a few possible things that could be causing the symptoms you have described.

Dental disease would be on the top of the list. When there is infection in the mouth this can cause not only a foul odor and thick saliva but it can also lead to problems with the nasal cavity and throat. Dental disease can also lead to gagging and dropping food.

Now this can also happen in the reverse order meaning if there is infection, polyps or even cancer in the sinus cavity,this can lead to smelly breath, nasal discharge and irritation of the throat.

When we see trouble with gagging especially when eating and eaith a change in barking or not barking at all in a large breed senior dog we also worry about Laryngeal Paralysis. The following link will cover this problem in more detail. LINK

I think this is really going to take a hands on exam to get a good look at the teeth and to check for signs of laryngeal paralysis. If there is infection in the mouth a good dental cleaning may be needed however if cleaning is not an option then antibiotics alone may help.

To help with his nose you can try using a saline nose drop. In our practice we recommend either lil noses or little remedies both of which are nose drops made for infants. 2-3 drops in each side of his nose twice daily. This can cause them to sneeze out a lot of discharge so you may want to do this outside.

This time of year allergies can also cause nasal discharge and oral Benadryl can help with this. This is dosed at 1 mg per pound of body weight every 12 hours.

I hope this helps give you some direction. Please reply back if you have additional questions and I will be happy to continue.

If you have no additional questions please take a few moments to provide a rating . Rating indicates that you are finished with this session and prompts Justanswer to compensate me for assisting you today. I am not compensated for my time until you provide a rating.

Expert:  Candy replied 1 year ago.
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He's doing a little better. I'm going to the vet tomorrow.