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Old 04-03-2010, 01:04 PM
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Arrow Weird coughing/chocking/snorting sound

Hi all,

I haven't been on these forums in a while, I almost forgot about it until my dog started doing something and I thought it would be good to get some advice. I've had Rocky for almost 2 years now, and he would do this coughing/snorting sound that I thought would be him choking when he pulled too hard on his leash. He would only do it once in a while, very rarely, and my parent's old beagle would do it that often too, and only while on a leash. However, Rocky has now been doing it frequently off leash, when getting excited now, almost daily. I have woken up in the night too to him doing it once. He never seems like it bothers him, and is almost like he is clearing his throat, but a couple times he has gagged and dry heaved, which is when I decided to get on this forum. The vet is closed at the moment, otherwise I would call them. What do you guys think? I know this is a sound I've heard other dogs make when excited or on leash, but why is Rocky doing it so frequently now, and off leash? Any advice? Does anyone know what this sound is I"m describing? Thank you so much!

Jen
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Old 04-03-2010, 01:08 PM
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What kind of dog is he? It almost sounds like reverse sneezing to me.
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Old 04-03-2010, 01:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Laurelin View Post
What kind of dog is he? It almost sounds like reverse sneezing to me.
I was going to say the same thing.
sounds like a reverse sneeze nothing to really worry about. One of my dogs does it sometimes.
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Old 04-03-2010, 01:19 PM
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The closest guess we've come to his breed, since he's a rescue, is part chihuahua, part basenji and part italian greyhound. What is this reverse sneezing you guys are talking about, I've never heard of it. Thanks!
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Old 04-03-2010, 01:37 PM
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Reverse sneezing
From Wikipedia.
Reverse sneezing (also called backwards sneezing) or inspiratory paroxysmal respiration is a phenomenon observed in dogs, particularly in those with brachycephalic skulls. Its exact cause is unknown but may be due to nasal, pharyngeal, or sinus irritation (such as an allergy), the dog's attempt to remove mucus, or from over-excitement due to present activity. It is characterized by rapid and repeated forced inhalation through the nose, accompanied by snorting or gagging sounds. Though it may be distressing to the animal, it is not known to be harmful. Most dogs are completely normal before and after episodes. In addition, most dogs will have repeat episodes of reverse sneezing throughout their lives.
According to Dr. Holly Frisby, DVM, "During a reverse sneeze, the dog will make rapid and long inspirations, stand still, and extend his head (and neck). A loud snorting sound is produced...."
Reverse sneezing also commonly occurs while the dog is asleep or immediately following a long nap. Other dogs may experience it following play, exercise, or meals. However, episodes are typically random. Though smaller dogs seem slightly more susceptible to reverse sneezing, any dog can develop it, regardless of size.
Differential diagnoses include tracheal collapse.
A common remedy is to pinch the dog's nose and scratch its throat. Lightly blowing in its face may also help. The dog will swallow a couple of times and then stop the reverse sneezing. Additionally, calming the dog down by rubbing its sides or back also helps to end the episode more quickly. While most dogs do not require medication, antihistamines and steroids may help if the problem is serious, chronic, and allergy-related.
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Old 04-03-2010, 01:47 PM
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If you walk him with a collar, it could be causing trachea problems. A dog of that size and build should never be walked with a collar, only with a harness, especially if they pull.

It's probably not anything to be super concerned about but I'd ask the vet when you get the chance.
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Old 04-03-2010, 01:49 PM
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Since he does it on leash, it could also be a collapsing trachea. This is a common condition for a lot of small breeds, but I'd suggest walking him on a harness so that he does not pull against his neck and damage the trachea any further.

ETA: Sorry MM, posted at the same time.
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Old 04-03-2010, 01:55 PM
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Thanks, that Wikipedia information was really informative! Any ideas as to why he's gagging and dry heaving so much all of a sudden after though? It never mentioned that. Thanks again!!!
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Old 04-03-2010, 01:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by milos_mommy View Post
If you walk him with a collar, it could be causing trachea problems. A dog of that size and build should never be walked with a collar, only with a harness, especially if they pull.

It's probably not anything to be super concerned about but I'd ask the vet when you get the chance.
We can't walk him with a harness because he is very aggressive on one and will lunge and pull towards any other dog or human within ten feet or closer. It is something we want to work on, but have tried so many things and those things haven't worked and we are really getting frustrated. Any suggestions? I hate walking him with a collar but the harness makes him worse.
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Old 04-03-2010, 02:01 PM
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Your dog's physical well being should be the highest priority. If walking him with a collar is possible injuring him, you should avoid it. That might mean using some other equipment that does not pull on his neck (like a harness) and training him to not lunge on leash (teach him "heel," talk to a trainer/behaviorist to work out aggression problems, etc.), or it might mean not walking him on leash at all. But again, keeping him physically safe should be the first priority.
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