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Recognizing the Signs of an Asthma Emergency in Dogs

As a pet parent, you should be aware of the potential risks and health concerns that can affect your furry friend. One such condition is asthma, which can cause breathing difficulties and discomfort for your canine companion.


What Is Asthma in Dogs?

Asthma is a respiratory condition brought on by the narrowing and inflammation of the airways. It often leads to breathing difficulties. This condition can affect both humans and animals, including dogs.

When your pup gets exposed to allergens or irritants, its airways become inflamed, making it difficult to breathe. Examples of these allergens and irritants include pollen, dust, smoke and mold.


Signs of an Asthma Emergency in Dogs

Asthma attacks in dogs can occur suddenly and be life-threatening. Recognizing the signs of an asthma emergency in dogs is crucial to ensuring prompt and appropriate treatment.

These signs may include:


  • Coughing

You may notice a persistent cough that sounds like your pet is choking or wheezing, which is a common symptom of asthma.


  • Rapid Breathing 

Your dog appears to be panting or breathing faster than usual, even when resting.


  • Blue or Pale Gums

Asthma can cause an oxygen deficiency in your pet's blood, which makes the color of their gums look pale or blue.


  • Open-mouth Breathing

This occurs when your dog is struggling to breathe. Subsequently, they may resort to breathing through their mouth with their tongue out.


  • Weakness or Lethargy

An asthma attack can be stressful for your furry buddy, leading to weakness or lethargy.


What to Do If Your Dog Is Having an Asthma Emergency

Seek veterinarian care immediately if you suspect your dog is having an asthma attack. However, you can help your beloved pup breathe easier before help arrives. You need to stay calm, as dogs can sense your emotions.

Reassuring them while keeping your cool helps them not get stressed out. Also, limit their activity. Keep your dog calm and prevent them from engaging in physical activity, which may add stress to their breathing. Next, ensure they get plenty of fresh air. You can achieve this by opening windows or doors to let in fresh air. If your dog Ydog has been prescribed asthma medication administer those as directed and follow the instructions provided by your veterinarian when doing so.


Preventing Asthma Emergencies in Dogs

Prevention is always the best way to avoid asthma emergencies in dogs. However, preventing asthma attacks may not always be possible. You can take some steps to reduce the risk of an emergency.

  • Avoid triggers- Identify potential allergens or irritants that may trigger an asthma attack in your dog and try to minimize their exposure.

  • Keep your home clean- Reduce dust and other allergens by regularly cleaning and vacuuming.

  • Maintain a healthy weight- Obesity heightens the risk of asthma in dogs. A balanced diet and regular exercise for your pet are advisable.

  • Follow your veterinarian's recommendations- Follow your pet doctor's recommendations for medication and follow-up care to the letter if your dog has asthma.


For more on asthma in dogs, visit Animal Emergency Center of Killeen at our Killeen, Texas, office. Call (254) 628-5017 to schedule an appointment today.

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