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-   -   Dog - constant cough...now wont eat (http://www.pets.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=7926)

PoBoy October 4th, 2004 01:41 PM

Dog - constant cough...now wont eat
 
I have a 12 year old Tibettan Terrier Dog who has been couging constantly for the past 2 weeks. He has been taken to the vet and his blood analysis came up negative for valley fever, cancer, liver disease, worms, and a bunch of other items. Kennel Cough was assumed the problem...he was put on antibiotics - well he is worse than ever now and he has stopped eating, has no energy...things are looking very grim. The vet is stumped at this point.

We also have a 2 year old TT puppy that seemed to have caught the kennel cough from him...but she is now doing fine now and completely off medication.

Is there something specific that we can ask the vet to look for? He is so miserable right now...we are considering putting him down :(

EDIT: We moved from Michigan to AZ last year...incase that may help spur some ideas.

Lucky Rescue October 4th, 2004 01:47 PM

Were x-rays taken of your dog's chest, to look for heart problems?

Was congestive heart failure mentioned?

PoBoy October 4th, 2004 02:13 PM

To be blunt...is there any hope if it is in fact cancer or heart disease? This is our 3rd Tibetan and we lost the past 2 in the same manner except for the coughing. They both stopped eating and we put them down after finding liver cancer in one and heart disease in the other. Basically, we all agreed that this one has lived a great life and we do not want to put him through any more testing than he has already gone through. However, I have a glimpse of hope left in me since this all started with the coughing and our other dog caught it from him and got over it in a week.

Anyway, his chest is not swollen and the cough is very dry. If you have any medication suggestions to help with the coughing that would be great. Further x-rays is pretty much out of the scenario unless there is reasoning other than cancer to do so that would link the coughing to it.

I just got off the phone with the vet...thus I wrote this feeling pretty negative about the whole situation.

Lucky Rescue October 4th, 2004 03:04 PM

[QUOTE]To be blunt...is there any hope if it is in fact cancer or heart disease?[/QUOTE]

For liver cancer, the answer is most likely "No". For heart disease or congestive heart failure - the lifespan after diagnosis could be from months to a couple years, depending on the dog's age and condition.

Older dogs of smaller breeds, like yours, seem more susceptible to CHF.

I certainly understand if you don't want to put a 12 year old dog through any invasive tests, but the heart test is not bad, and appropriate medication could add a year or two to your dog's life, providing he could have a good quality of life!

Your dog does sound like he is very uncomfortable and unhappy now, so I would do something about it either way.

So sorry for both of you, although I'm sure your dog has had a wonderful life with you!

PoBoy October 4th, 2004 03:29 PM

Thanks for your replies...you hit our main concern on the head. If we do extend his life, will it be a good one? We can provide him with anything and everything, but we certainly do not want him to live misserably regardless. Stupid dogs and their emotional attachment!! :mad: :) :) :) :) :(

Im currently away from him at the moment which makes things worse - I dont return to him until Friday night (Im getting updates over the phone). But it's sounding as if I need to get an earlier flight as my parents feel it is about time for him to be with his brother and sister in puppy heaven.

I was just hoping someone would say - ohh yeah, that kennel cough takes a few weeks to clear up...when your dog stops eating it's the turning point. Guess that's not the case :( It never is...

heidiho October 4th, 2004 04:26 PM

Stupid dogs and their emotional attachment!!

What does that supposed to mean............................

PoBoy October 4th, 2004 04:36 PM

It was an attempt to get me to smile...a joke if you will. Obviously we all have huge attachments to our pets. If we did not situations like these would be a heck of a lot easier.

The above is a retorhecal (spelling?) statement...I am very glad to have the emotional attachment I have with my dogs. I would not trade it for the world. I was just trying to lighten myself up a little...

VickyK October 4th, 2004 05:35 PM

Was he checked for heart worms?

PoBoy October 4th, 2004 05:40 PM

Yep..he doesnt have them.

Writing4Fun October 4th, 2004 07:09 PM

[QUOTE=PoBoy]I was just hoping someone would say - ohh yeah, that kennel cough takes a few weeks to clear up...when your dog stops eating it's the turning point. Guess that's not the case :( It never is...[/QUOTE]
Well, kennel cough does take time to clear up, and it sometimes gets worse before it gets better, continuing for a few days after the meds are completed. BUT since the older dog had it first, and the younger dog has since cleared up, then I'd wager it's something more. There was another thread a while back about a coughing 12 yr old dog. I believe it turned out to be congestive heart failure. I'm with LuckyRescue on this one - go for the heart test. You'll always wonder "what if" if you don't. I'm really sorry you're going through this. It's never easy. :(

Oh, and I totally got your "[I]Stupid dogs and their emotional attachment!![/I]" comment. A lot of us do the same thing in tough times. ;)

PoBoy October 4th, 2004 08:00 PM

How is congestive heart failure treated? It's probably hard for you to say, but is this something that when treated his life will be exteneded to "normal status"...or is it somethign that will keep him going although will have it's repercussions (what are they if so?)??

Lucky Rescue October 4th, 2004 10:48 PM

IF your dog does have CHF, one of the treatments is to feed a low sodium diet, to reduce fluid accumulation.

Drugs are also given - diuretics to get rid of the fluid, dilators to increase blood flow and ease the burden on the heart, and digoxin to make the heart beat stronger.


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