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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 28455
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience.
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i have a elderly dog he keeps falling over he coughs a lot

Customer Question

hi i have a elderly dog he keeps falling over he coughs a lot and when he gets up its like he doesn't know where he is and he looks confused he has stopped breathing once as well he has seen the vets but there have not come up with much the meds he was put on has made him even more bader have have have told me to use kids cough meds for the dog which i was unsure about trying this
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.
Aloha! You're speaking to Dr. Michael Salkin

I'm sorry to hear of this. Molly is experiencing syncopal (fainting) episodes which indicate severe and life-threatening heart disease. A cough suppressant is not going to be effective nor should it be considered at all until the cause of Molly's heart disease is clarified and treated properly.

Molly may suffer from myoxmatous valve disease ("leaky valves"), cardiomyopathy (heart muscle disease), or perhaps a conduction disorder (the heart beat isn't transmitted through the entire heart properly) and these heart diseases are treated differently from each other. The proper manner in which to determine what underlies Molly's syncopy is to careful auscultate (listen to) her heart, X-ray her chest, perform an EKG to see if arrhythmia (irregular heart rate) exists, and even ultrasound her heart (an echocardiogram) if need be.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.
Dr. Michael Salkin and other Dog Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your kind accept. I appreciate it.

I'm going to check back with you in a few days for an update. Feel free to return to our conversation - even after rating - prior to my contacting you if you wish.

Please disregard the info request.
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.
May I have an update on Molly, please?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

hi ya no change i think he is getting woser but the vets just keep giveing him the same things and the meds once he takes it he goes down right away and than gets back up we told the vet this but he seems not to listen to us should i look at takeing him to a diffent vet

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.

If Molly's vet isn't prescribing medication that helps - and particularly if you think Molly is worsening - yes, it would be prudent to get a second opinion - preferably from a specialist internist. Please see here for such a specialist: http://www.ecvim-ca.org/diplomate-list, click the cardiology link and look for a specialist near you.

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