Read time: 3 mins
10 Sep 2023
Just like humans, our pooches can experience respiratory issues, so it's essential to recognise the signs, understand the causes, and know how to manage this condition.
In this blog post, we'll cover everything you need to know about asthma in dogs, from identifying symptoms to treatment options.
If you've ever wondered whether your dog can have asthma, you're not alone. Dogs can indeed suffer from this respiratory condition. To determine if your dog has asthma, look out for these common signs:
Persistent coughing, especially after exercise or excitement, can be a sign of asthma in dogs.
If your dog appears to be struggling to breathe, with rapid or shallow breaths, it's a cause for concern.
Wheezing sounds during breathing are another indicator of potential asthma.
Asthmatic dogs may become lethargic due to their difficulty in breathing.
To diagnose asthma in dogs, vets use a combination of methods, including:
Vets will conduct a thorough physical exam, listening for abnormal lung sounds and checking for other respiratory issues.
Chest X-rays can reveal any abnormalities in the lungs.
This procedure involves inserting a small camera into the airways to visualise any obstructions or inflammation.
Blood-work can help rule out other potential causes of respiratory distress.
Yes, dogs with asthma can experience asthma attacks.
These attacks are characterised by sudden and severe respiratory distress. During an attack, your dog may exhibit extreme coughing, wheezing, and gasping for breath. It's crucial to remain calm and seek immediate vet attention if your dog has an asthma attack.
Understanding the triggers of asthma in dogs is essential for managing the condition. Common asthma triggers include:
Pollen, dust mites, mould spores, and other allergens
Cigarette smoke and other air pollutants
Intense physical activity, particularly in overweight or out-of-shape dogs
Stress and anxiety
Infections of the respiratory tract
Managing asthma in dogs involves a multi-faceted approach. Treatment options may include:
Vets often prescribe bronchodilators and corticosteroids to reduce inflammation and open airways.
Minimise exposure to known triggers such as smoke and allergens.
Maintaining a healthy weight through diet and exercise can help reduce asthma symptoms.
Create a calm and stress-free environment for your dog.
Use air purifiers and keep your home clean to minimise allergen exposure.
No, you should not use human inhalers for dogs.
Human inhalers are not designed for dogs, instead vets will prescribe inhalers specifically formulated for dogs. These inhalers deliver medication in a way that's safe and effective for dogs. It's crucial never to use a human inhaler on your dog without veterinary guidance, as it can be harmful to them.