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Dr. JD
Dr. JD, Veterinarian
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 1420
Experience:  15+ years experience, special interest in behavior, shelter medicine
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My dogs bark sounds like a goose honk. Shes had some weird

Customer Question

My dog's bark sounds like a goose honk. She's had some weird gurgle-like noises when she eats & swallows too. Brief breathing coughs too. She's 12 & currently on meds for a bladder tumor & meds for upper GI ulcer as a result of the tumor meds. I don't believe the two are in any way related, though...just FYI.
Last week she ripped a bird apart that flew into our window & fell on the deck. It was in 3 piles...head, body, wings. Gross, I know, but could she have a bird bone lodged in her throat? And if so, how would a local vet check that?! Do dogs get laryngitis?!
Any info regarding this would be helpful. Thanks!
Rene Rudzki
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. JD replied 8 years ago.

Hello and thank you for your question.


Dogs can get laryngitis and bronchitis... so that is certainly a possiblity.


Given her age, you have to also consider that there could be an underlying heart condition contributing as well, esp if there is coughing and raspy breathing.


What kind of dog is she? Some breeds are more prone to having problems with their larynx... and can have changes in their voices due to problems with laryngeal weakness or paralysis.. esp labs.


An x-ray would identify if a bone is actually lodged somewhere, and a vet can also do a thorough exam to rule out an oral foreign body or bronchitis.


Is she actively coughing a lot or is it more raspy breathing and voice changes when barking...?


Dr. JD and other Veterinary Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
She is a black lab. The cough thing is not active, just intermittent. Not even much of a cough as a breathing-type thing, almost like a slight choke or clearing of the throat or trying to "hack" something up. My concern is also the irregular noise she makes when eating/swallowing. I heard her bark again this am, not as bad of a honk as yesterday but still not normal. Have an appt w/our vet this am. Will try & get an xray to rule out anything possibly lodged in her throat?! Thank you for your response & time. Still would appreciate a response back regarding your ?'s, in case you had any more information. Thanks so much!! Rene Rudzki
Expert:  Dr. JD replied 8 years ago.

Hi again,


Given her breed and age, I am very suspicious about a possible problem with laryngeal paralysis. It often causes them to have a voice change, difficulty eating, and raspy breathing. Make sure you ask about this when you go. Bloodwork to rule out hypothyroidism is a good idea, too, because it can often be linked to laryngeal problems. There are medical and surgical treatments for this condition depending on the exact cause and the severity.


She also could have bronchitis or pharyngitis/laryngitis, which would be a more temporary problem.


Best of luck and let me know what your vet says!