‘My dog sounds like he has a hairball on his throat’

Is there anything more alarming and nerve-racking than hearing your dog’s deep dry cough in the middle of the night? If your dog sounds like he has a hairball in his throat but it doesn’t come out, don’t panic. Dogs, like humans, can cough to get rid of dust and microbes they breathe in; and in some cases, they can do it as a response to viruses and bacteria.

‘My dog sounds like he has a hairball on his throat’: Why?

Sometimes, coughing can be an indicator of a serious condition, and sometimes, it can just be a symptom of a plain cold. Some of the causes of dog coughing may be:

Kennel cough: It is a highly contagious disease, and can be caused by bacteria or a number of viruses. Even though it may be disturbing and upsetting, it is not usually dangerous. If you want to know more about this condition, you can read all the info in our Kennel Cough blog.

Pneumonia: An untreated or late-diagnosed bacterial disease can cause your dog pneumonia. If he has trouble eating and breathing, he is excessively panting, has a fever, or gets tired easily, you should take him to the vet to treat him asap.

A simple cold: Even though human flu is not the same as canine flu, its symptoms can be pretty similar: Sneezing, coughing, runny nose, lethargy, and fever.

Allergies: Environmental and seasonal allergies can cause sneezes, runny nose, and cough as well. However, they won’t cause fever or lethargy.

If your dog’s cough persists and he is running a fever, you should contact your vet immediately. He will let you know if antibiotics are needed as part of the treatment.
However, apart from antibiotics, there are other home remedies you can give your dog to help his cough get better.

  • Honey: It contains antioxidants, and soothes stuffy nose and cough. You can mix it with some warm water to make its consumption easier. Not recommended for diabetic or overweighted dogs, since it has a high sugar content.
  • Coconut oil: Similar to honey, this oil has a lot of benefits for your dog’s health. It contains antibacterial and antiviral properties that will alleviate his cough.
  • Vitamins: Our Daily-Multi Vitamins boost your dog’s immune system and improve his immunological defenses when dealing with environmental toxins.
  • Chicken soup: Especially homemade chicken soup for your dog is the real deal. Dogs tend to lose their appetite when they feel under the weather, so giving him soup will make eating more appealing, while keeping him hydrated.
  • Steam inhalation: Exposing your dog to steam can help loosen up the gunk in his throat. When you take a shower, take him to the bathroom with you, to inhale the steam.
  • Keep your dog hydrated: Water is essential to help make your dog’s cough better. It will help him keep hydrated while eliminating the toxins from his body.

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