Dog Friendly Tips: Hearing Problems
Any dog breed can develop congenital deafness, but breeds with white coats are the most affected. Different causes of hearing loss include:
Noise: Depending on the loudness, noise can cause temporary or permanent hearing loss.
Infections: Otitis media (middle ear) and otitis interna (inner ear) are infections that can cause permanent deafness.
General anaesthesia: Anaesthesia can cause deafness, but the occurrences are very rare.
Your dog may be experiencing some hearing loss if he or she is less responsive to greetings or commands. A visit to the vets can confirm the problem.
If you have noticed a hearing problem, try not to disturb your dog while he or she sleeps or approach from behind, because this may be startling. Set a pattern of touch, vibration, or smell to wake the dog.
Dog Friendly Article: Common Causes of Dog Coughing
Some of the common health conditions that can lead to dog coughing include; kennel cough, pneumonia, collapsing trachea, and heart disease.
Kennel cough (Infectious Canine Tracheobronchitis) is a type of respiratory infection that affects dogs. The disease is highly contagious and can spread through the air, contaminated surfaces, and direct contact.
• Symptoms - A loud, dry cough that sounds like a "honk" is the most common symptom of kennel cough. Lethargy, fever, loss of appetite, and discharge from the eyes and nose may also occur.
• Diagnosis - Kennel cough is usually diagnosed based on a physical exam and symptoms. However, further testing such as a bacterial culture can be performed.
• Treatment - If the infection is caused by bacteria, antibiotics, a cough suppressant, and supportive care will be recommended. In mild cases, only supportive care may be required.
• Prevention - Kennel cough vaccines area available for dogs to help prevent infection.
Pneumonia is a serious health problem that can lead to inflammation, fluid build-up, and infection in the lungs and respiratory tract. Puppies, geriatric dogs, and canines with weak immune systems are at a higher risk of developing the disease.
• Symptoms - Pneumonia in dogs can cause; lethargy, fast breathing, rapid heart rate, discharge from the nose, and a productive or congested-sounding cough.
• Diagnosis - Radiographs of the chest, blood work, and a bacterial culture are some of the options for diagnosing pneumonia.
• Treatment - Pneumonia caused by bacteria is treated with antibiotics and supportive care. Medication that suppresses coughing is not recommended, as coughing can help get rid of the excess phlegm.
• Prevention - Pneumonia caused by aspiration can be prevented by treating underlying health problems such as gastric reflux.
A collapsing trachea occurs when the trachea collapses, causing the airway to narrow. It is a genetic condition most often seen in small dogs, but it can affect canines of all sizes.
• Symptoms - Coughing, trouble breathing, and vomiting caused by excess coughing are all symptoms of a collapsing trachea.
• Diagnosis - A collapsing trachea can be diagnosed based on symptoms. However, radiographs and a fluoroscopy evaluation can help confirm the diagnosis.
• Treatment - A collapsing trachea rarely causes serious problems, but it can affect a dog's quality of life. In cases where weight loss and treatment using medication does not work, surgery may be an option.
• Prevention - Maintaining your dog at an ideal weight and avoiding irritation of the trachea (pulling on collar, allergies, asthma, etc.) can help prevent a collapsing trachea.
Dilated cardiomyopathy, valvular disease, and heartworm are three of the main types of heart disease diagnosed in dogs.
• Symptoms - Although the signs of heart disease vary depending on the condition, coughing (especially after exercise) is a common symptom. Additional signs of heart disease include; trouble breathing, lethargy, swelling of the abdominal area, and fainting.
• Diagnosis - Some of the tests your veterinarian may need to perform to make a diagnosis include; radiographs, electrocardiogram, echocardiogram, and blood work.
• Treatment - Dog coughing caused by heart disease is usually resolved by treating the underlying problem.
• Prevention - Providing your dog with plenty of exercise and feeding him a well-balanced diet is an essential part of maintaining his heart healthy. Placing your dog on a heartworm preventative is also a good idea.
Sonia Manning provides interesting information, helpful tips and useful resources about dogs and their health.
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