What is Chronic Inflammation of the Bronchi?
COPD is a disease of the lungs that is not curable or reversible and it will gradually continue to get worse. The disease is caused by a chronic inflammation of the bronchial tubes, which are needed to move air into your dog’s lungs. Since dogs do not make spit, it is more difficult to know when your dog has too much mucus, so the best way to know if your dog has COPD is if they have a chronic (daily) cough. Any cough that lasts for more than two months is considered a chronic cough.
Chronic inflammation of the bronchi is actually called chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or chronic bronchitis. COPD is an inflammatory disease of the airway that affects breathing and continues for a lifetime. COPD causes a chronic cough and too much mucus production, making it harder to breathe. This disease can also cause tracheobronchial collapse, which is a very common disorder in dogs.
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Symptoms of Chronic Inflammation of the Bronchi in Dogs
In the beginning of the disease, COPD will only affect the small airways with slight inflammation. Continual inflammation will cause more airway obstruction with scars (pulmonary fibrosis), distention, and stretching of the small airways. The symptoms at this point will be just a dry cough and gagging. As it progresses, COPD will cause your dog to get tired easily and may pass out from not getting enough oxygen when playing or exercising. The symptoms of this disease can vary from dog to dog, but the main symptom is chronic coughing. Other symptoms that may accompany the cough are:
- Breathing fast
- Shortness of breath
- Noisy breathing
- Lung crackling
- Loss of appetite
- Losing weight
- Blue gums or tongue
- Intolerance to exercise
Causes of Chronic Inflammation of the Bronchi in Dogs
According to the professionals, there are many different causes of COPD. These can be hereditary, environmental, allergenic, or just random. Here are some examples of each.
- Cocker Spaniel
- West Highland White Terrier
- Toy dogs
- Cigarette smoke
- Household cleaners
- Allergy to certain foods
- Allergic to new shampoo or soap
- Dogs older than five years old
- Being overweight or obese
- Untreated acute bronchitis
- Repeated respiratory infections
Diagnosis of Chronic Inflammation of the Bronchi in Dogs
Your veterinarian will first need to know all about your dog’s symptoms such as when they started and how they have progressed. You will also need to provide your veterinarian with all of your dog’s medical history, diet, activity levels, and any changes in your dog’s personality or attitude. Be sure to tell him if your dog has recently been around any kind of pollutants, such as cigarette smoke, chemicals, or cleaners. The veterinarian will then need to do a complete physical examination including blood pressure, body temperature, and listening to your dog’s lungs.
Some other disorders may mimic COPD and cause similar symptoms such as pneumonia, heartworm, congestive heart failure, and lungworms. To be sure your dog is not suffering from any of these conditions; your veterinarian will have to run some tests. The tests needed are:
- Complete blood count (CBC)
- Blood chemistry panel
- Urine specific gravity test
- Bronchopulmonary cytology
- Saliva culture
- Fungal and bacterial culture
- Fecal examination
- Digital radiographs (X-rays) of the chest and abdominal area
If the veterinarian is still unsure of the exact cause of your dog’s symptoms, other tests will be needed, such as:
- Fine needle aspiration of fluid in lungs
- Bronchoscopy (to see the inside of the airway)
- Tracheal lavage (to get cell samples from bronchioles)
- Microscopic examination and cultures of cells from the bronchioles
If all the other conditions have been ruled out, the veterinarian will determine how far the COPD has progressed so it can be treated.
Treatment of Chronic Inflammation of the Bronchi in Dogs
Treatment of COPD depends on what is causing the problem. If your dog is having a lot of trouble breathing the veterinarian may administer oxygen therapy. Your dog will have to be hospitalized for this. If your dog has an infection, the veterinarian will prescribe antibiotics as well as a steroid medication (corticosteroids) and a bronchodilator. If the cause is environmental, your dog’s COPD may not progress any further if the environmental cause is eliminated. However, there is no cure for COPD, but the symptoms can be relieved with medication and therapy. Besides the steroids and bronchodilator, the veterinarian may also prescribe cough suppressant medication to control the constant coughing if the cough is not producing anything to clear the lungs. A dry cough does more harm than good so the cough suppressant can help your dog and his lungs get the rest they need.
Recovery of Chronic Inflammation of the Bronchi in Dogs
The prognosis is good because it is not a fatal disease, but the COPD will usually progress and need more extensive treatment as time passes. The most important thing to remember with COPD is to keep the air clean enough for your dog to breathe. This may mean getting rid of carpeting, not using perfume, only cleaning with chemicals when your dog is outside, and making sure the house is aired out before your dog comes back inside.
Chronic Inflammation of the Bronchi Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals
My dog has MVD and a grade 5 heart murmur. He has severe enlargement of the left side of his heart which is compressing the brochus. He was prescribed frusemide but this didn't relieve the cough and he currently is not in conjestive heart failure. Also his breathing rate is always normal 19bmp and the cough is intermittent throughout the day but not as bad during the night.Also he occasionaly has a blue tongue but gums are alays pink. I have been told to keep him on the frusemide as he has incresed filling pressures within the heart and now they would also like to add cardilis. My question is if he isn't in CHF is this treatment appropiate as it would give a resolution in cough.
Mitral valve disease is a common condition in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, the enlarged left side of the heart putting pressure on the bronchus would cause a cough reflex so medication may not resolve this problem; there are differing opinions on treatment of heart conditions, medicines like furosemide are used to remove fluid from the body (lungs, abdomen or limbs), however they are not suitable in all cases especially if there isn’t fluid building up. In cases of high filling pressures there are other medications that maybe more suitable (sildenafil); due to the individual nature of treatment I would recommend visiting a Specialist to determine the best course of treatment for Jasper. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM
I was smoking since the age of 16. Last year I went for lung functioning tests! I am now 66. I was experiencing bad cough, large amounts of mucus, very little energy, and continued smoking. I visited my doctor and a chest x-ray was carried out, guess what, i was diagnosed of COPD. I took Spiriva 30/C/Dev 18 mcg every day for three months no changes,after using COPD herbal formula i purchased from BEST HEALTH HERBAL CENTRE for 5 weeks,my airflow was perfect,no more cough and chest tightness was over .All thanks to God for leading to BEST HEALTH HERBAL CENTRE. please visit their website for more information.. ww w. besthealthherbalcentre. com
I was smoking since the age of 16. Last year I went for lung functioning tests! I am now 66. I was experiencing bad cough, large amounts of mucus, very little energy, and continued smoking. I visited my doctor and a chest x-ray was carried out, guess what, i was diagnosed of COPD. I took Spiriva 30/C/Dev 18 mcg every day for three months no changes,after using COPD herbal formula i purchased from BEST HEALTH HERBAL CENTRE for 5 weeks,my airflow was perfect,no more cough and chest tightness was over .All thanks to God for leading to BEST HEALTH HERBAL CENTRE.
I was diagnosed of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) in 2012 at the age of 63. I had been a heavy smoker, my symptoms started out with dry cough and shortness of breath, i ended up in the hospital, on a ventilator. I should have known it was coming, but like most smokers, thought it would never happen to me. My COPD got significantly worse and unbearable because of my difficulty catching breath. Last year, i started on a natural COPD Herbal therapy from NewLife Herbal Clinic, i read a lot of positive reviews from patients who used the treatment and i immediately started on it. I had great relief with this herbal treatment. I breath very much better now, no case of shortness of breath or chest tightness since treatment. Visit NewLife Herbal Clinic website ww w. newlifeherbalclinic. com. This COPD treatment is a miracle!!
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