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Breathing Issue Advice

9 posts in this topic

Hi there, we adopted our beloved Jax in 2007 from this forum. He has been going pretty great but recent times he has this crackly breathing...sounds like he has bronchitis or a lot of mucus on his chest...now that he is old he is inside a lot so we hear it each night. Every day he does this hacking thing, almost throwing up.


Last week, after a very short walk he came back completely exhausted, extreme. He cuddled up to mum and on the couch (never cuddled anyone in his life) really nuzzling his head on her and was panting really heavy all night - trip to vet, xray, heart murmur tests etc etc and nothing could be found.


Tonight he is laying next me and he is super restless and occasionally sits up and pants, like stress/super out of breath.


He isnt over weight and his diet is mostly dried food. Got plenty of water but doesnt do a lot of exercise now.Any ideas?


I dont mind taking him back to the vet, but i want to go with some leads...Jax HATES the vet, he stresses and shakes and tries to bite...honestly its frightening to watch him that scared...so i need to only take him for emergencies.


Wife googled and came up with a collapsed/damaged trachea? Although he can still bark fine.


Any ideas?


Video of the breathing noise



Video of his belly while breathing (not sure if this is significant)




Knee reco. Its ok, but not perfect.

Fatty lumps - has a few of these and we had one removed from arm pit, they said defintely benign



Edited by JimmyTheHuman

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The vet is your only option.
For his X rays was he mildly sedated or obliging & able to be done with no GA ??
I can only go by our girl who had a Trachea issue that advanced very quickly ,she was fit as ,she was near 15 ate like a horse ,ran,played but started a mild cough ,cough progressed quickly then one night she had massive breathing issues & PTS the next day
He could have mild asthma if your in a smoke affected area .
He may have arthritis that is giving him pain is he on any pain relief ??

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Agree. Vet required.  You might find a vet willing to look at videos prior to bringing him in... worth asking.  That's unlikely, but not impossible. 

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My girl, whom we gave her wings, was having trouble breathing & everything was an effort, which was so out of character for her being an active border collie.  We thought it was her advanced kidney failure taking her out, until I brought it to the vet's attention that her abdomen was quite extended.  It took an ultrasound to determine that she had a tumour on her heart which was pressing on her trachea & her abdomen & lungs were filling with fluid.  I hope this is not the case with your guy. 

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I am definitely taking him back to the vet, but i wanted to offer some thoughts and ask more questions. Our vet is very obliging and caring, they would watch the vids.


No he isnt on any pain meds, but doesnt pay his knee much attention.


He remembers the vet clinic and he doesnt like the place at all. As soon as you pull up he is shaking...then when they try and stethoscope him he snaps and growls from fear, we muzzle him and he just shakes, like cartoon type whole of body trembling. They sedate him and then they xray and ultra sound and listen to him...he isnt wheezing during any of this.


It's not from smoke, he has had it since before the bushfires.


Sheena, that sounds quite similar, except sometimes he is ok, if something like that i would expect it all the time?


He seems to have less wheezing if sleeping with head elevated, or if he is standing. it seems to be when he laying down.


I dont want to wait until its a bigger issue, but i dont know what to ask/tell the vet?

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1 hour ago, JimmyTheHuman said:

but i dont know what to ask/tell the vet?

What you've posted here will be helpful. Write things down in point form , maybe .
Jax wheezes badly when :
Lying down 
Jax seems better when :
His head is elevated 
he's sitting up 
he's standing 
blah, blah .....

Include observations like 
Does he mouth breathe?
Does he sneeze?

Does he appear to have trouble swallowing food? 
Does his tongue go blue?
Does he appear anxious?
Does he 'self-correct' ? sit/stand to breathe easier? 
Do you walk him on a collar or harness? 
has his bark changed tone/loudness?

All this can help the vet  ....

Edited by persephone
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Honestly I've seen all those before and would have said heart/lungs/trachea but if they couldn't find anything I'm stuck! :( Try a full blood panel? Or a cardiologist ultrasound. It's got to be coming from somewhere. 


Hugs for little Jax. :heart: 


edit; awesome post Perse! 

Edited by Powerlegs

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I hope you and your vets can find and answer so you can treat and help Jax.  


I have an elderly Pom x Corgi who has dynamic airways disease which was diagnosed a couple of years ago.   But he (Bunter) doesn’t get exhausted in the way you describe Jax.  He has a dreadful cough and sometimes it is so damned harsh and strong that I wonder he doesn’t cough up his insides :cry: :cry:.  He lies around most of the time (he is 17), but when he went to the vet the other day he was as bright as a button and we went for a little walk down the street.  He does puff quite heavily, though, and a few weeks ago in the wee small hours he was breathing so heavily, I was contemplating taking him to emergency.     


We’ve been using a puffer on him for sometime now and have tried heaps of meds and combinations of meds, but we are now down to just ABs (injection every fortnight as he has become difficult to medicate), Codeine three times a day, Pred every second day and the puffer three times daily.   


Good luck.  I hope you can find Jax some relief.   

Edited by Loving my Oldies

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