Our 6-year-old purebred toy poodle has had a periodic gasping cough since he was a puppy. During these episodes, it seems his throat is constricted and he can't get enough air. The episodes last a few seconds and happen daily. Our veterinarian says he has a collapsible trachea and nothing can be done. It is worrisome to hear our dog gasp for breath. And the episodes have become more frequent and last longer. Is there anything that can be done for him? He is otherwise an active, smart, sweet dog. His only other health issue is a reaction to a vaccination when he was a puppy -- he lost the hair around the injection site, and it took a long time to grow back.
B.C., Naples, FL Aug 09, 2010
Regrettably, this condition (along with other cartilage and tendon weaknesses, especially involving the knees) is all too common in toy poodles. Vaccinations could play a role. There is evidence of post-vaccination production of antibodies against connective tissue in dogs who then acquire an autoimmune disease. Some breeds and pedigree lineages may be more susceptible to vaccinosis than others. I would at least advise no more vaccinations and give your dog a daily multimineral/multivitamin human-infant supplement and glucosamine, chondroitin, MSM and horsetail (for silica).
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