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Raspy Dog Cough

by Robert B.
(Buckeye, AZ)

My dog has a raspy kind of cough, but not all the time. It sounds like she has something in her throat. It seemed to come on after we had our house sprayed repeatedly due to a bed bug problem.

I am fearful she has congestive heart failure although I don't have the money to put her through extensive testing.

My dog is a lab mix and is about 15 years old. She is quite fragile and walks very slowly.

Can you give me any advice as to how to treat her? She eats human food including a lot of protein, meat and chicken most of the time.

Comments for Raspy Dog Cough

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Dec 03, 2012
My Online Vet Response for: Raspy Dog Cough
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Robert,
For your 15 year old Lab mix, with a raspy cough, it would be difficult for me to give you advice without more information on what is causing the cough.

A 'raspy kind of cough', as you describe, can be caused by congestive heart failure (as you have feared), but also by bronchitis, possibly a reaction from the bug spray, dental disease, tonsillitis, or even lung cancer. Each of these conditions are treated in a very different way.

A bad reaction to bug spray, she would need the remedy Nux vomica.

Cough from heart disease would be Spongia tosta. Plus low sodium diet, supplements of Hawthorne and CoEnzyme Q-10.

Bronchitis cough, especially if it ends in a gag, Squilla maritima. And give her teaspoons of honey to help decrease the swelling in her throat.

Dental disease, lung cancer, tonsillitis, or other
problems each have a different treatment.

You should seek the help of a holistic veterinarian to treat her specifically for what ails her. This can be accomplished with a basic exam. Using a stethoscope and listening to her heart will enable the doctor to make a diagnosis on whether it is congestive heart failure or something else.

You wrote,
"I don't have the money to put her through extensive testing."

Of course, if you did have money for x-rays, blood work, ultrasound, etc. a lot more information could be obtained. But a basic exam should be sufficient to rule out heart failure, dental disease and possibly cancer (checking for swollen lymph nodes, color of her gums, etc.).

You wrote
"She is quite fragile and walks very slowly."

Is this because she has arthritis, or she cannot breathe well? Or does she have muscle wasting and weight loss (such as from kidney disease or a cancer condition)?

You wrote,
"She eats human food including a lot of protein, meat and chicken most of the time."

This is wonderful. She may also need to have a supplement such as Call of the Wild by Wysong or Raw Daily Boost by Nature's Variety to balance it out.

Click here to find a holistic veterinarian in your area. Another resource for vets knowledgeable in homeopathy is

Please keep us posted by coming back to this page and clicking the 'click here to add your own comments' link below.

Take care,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

P.S. If you've found this service or our web site helpful, please "Like" us by clicking the like button at the top of the left margin. Thank you!

Related Pages:
- Dog Cough Diagnoses & Treatments,
- Ask a Vet Online Library - Dog Coughing Problems Section

DISCLAIMER: The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

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