Skip to main content

Respiratory problems

Breathing problems are a common symptom in dogs that can have various causes. In this article you will learn how to recognize breathing problems in your dog, what the possible causes are and how you can help your dog.

How do I recognize breathing problems in my dog?

Respiratory problems can manifest themselves in a number of ways. Some signs include:

If you notice one or more of these symptoms in your dog, you should present him to a veterinarian as soon as possible to determine the cause and get appropriate treatment.

What are the possible causes of breathing difficulties in dogs?

Respiratory problems can have many different causes, ranging from harmless to life-threatening. Some of the most common are:

  • Allergies: some dogs are allergic to certain substances in the environment, such as pollen, dust or mold. This can cause inflammation of the respiratory tract, leading to coughing, sneezing or nasal discharge.
  • Infections: Bacteria, viruses or fungi can infect a dog's respiratory tract and lead to bronchitis, pneumonia or kennel cough. These conditions often cause fever, cough, sputum or shortness of breath.
  • Foreign objects: some dogs accidentally swallow or inhale small objects, such as bones, toys or grass. These can block or injure the airway and cause retching, gasping or vomiting.
  • Heart problems: When a dog's heart is not working properly, fluid can build up in the lungs or abdomen. This can make breathing difficult and lead to panting, coughing, or mucous membranes turning blue.
  • Tumors: In rare cases, tumors can grow in a dog's lungs, throat, or nose, causing the airway to narrow or bleed. This can cause shortness of breath, nosebleeds or weight loss.

How can I help my dog with respiratory problems?

Treatment for respiratory problems in dogs depends on the underlying cause. The veterinarian will perform a thorough examination and order further tests, if necessary, to make the diagnosis. Depending on the case, he may then prescribe medication, remove a foreign body or recommend surgery.

As a dog owner, you can help your dog with breathing problems by:

  • Keeping him calm and avoiding stress
  • Providing him with fresh water and easily digestible food
  • Protecting him from heat, cold and drafts
  • Taking him to the vet regularly and giving his medications as directed
  • Watch for signs of deterioration and act immediately in case of emergency.

Respiratory problems are a serious problem in dogs that should not be ignored. By giving your dog prompt and appropriate treatment, you can improve his quality of life and increase his life expectancy.

The authors assume that a veterinarian should be consulted if an animal is ill and that medication should only be taken after consultation with a doctor or pharmacist. Only an individual examination can lead to a diagnosis and treatment decision.

We help you find the nearest vet → This way