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Dr. Andy
Dr. Andy, Medical Director
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 30828
Experience:  Veterinarian, UC Davis graduate, emphasis in Dermatology, Internal Medicine, and Pain Control
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my dog has been diagnosed with mild chronic bronchitis,he has

Customer Question

my dog has been diagnosed with mild chronic bronchitis,he has been prescibed medrone v 2mg twice a day, he is a 34kg 12 year old collie cross retriever.he coughs about twice per day,sometimes he goes 2 or 3 days without a cough.Is this drug safe to use long term?and is there an alternative?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Andy replied 7 years ago.
Welcome! I would be happy to assist you. I am a 2003 graduate from UC Davis and a Medical Director of a veterinarian practice.

Don't forget, I will do everything possible to provide a timely and detailed response, but sometimes it can be difficult to fully answer all questions. You can always select "reply to expert" if you need further clarification or more information, prior to providing a rating.

I am sorry to hear about this concern for Rosco.

Well, a bit of a tricky question.

Many pets are maintained on steroids like prednisone, triamcinolone or medrol for months or years due to respiratory problems, or especially, due to allergies.

So, can it be used safely long term? Yes. Will it require maybe some basic testing every 6 months? Yes

Maybe. sometimes, a weaker steroid can be used like prednisone and perhaps at a lower dose.

In addition, many times, you can simply wean the dose down to the lowest amount necessary with any of these drugs to control symptoms. A cough only twice a day is almost nothing. So, the dose likely can be lowered.

Other medications? yes

You could ask your vet about using a bronchodilator to help open the airways a bit. Drugs for that would be aminoophylline or theophylline.

Now with bronchitis, that means there is inflammation in the airways. Some vets will even recommend using inhalers in dogs or cats. Yes, inhalers, just like what a person uses for asthma. This helps to deliver some steroid directly to the lungs, where it has less impact on the body. There are specific devices your vet can tell you about to use inhalers on pets with a face mask.

Also, sometimes bronchitis is a allergic bronchitis, due to allergies. So, ask your vet about doing a trial with some antihistamine like benadryl or hydroxyzine.

Benadryl can be given at a dose of 1mg per pound of body weight. Keep in mind, Benadryl tablets and liquids come in different sizes. So, an approximately 25 pound dog can get a full 25mg tablet or a half of a 50mg tablet. I usually avoid the liquid Benadryl in larger dogs (you would have to give too much of it). You can give Benadryl every 8-12 hours.

Hope that information has been helpful.
Please remember to select REPLY TO EXPERT if for any reason you need further clarification, have more questions, or need assistance. My goal is to provide the best answer possible prior to you leaving a feedback rating. Please remember a rating before leaving.
Dr. Andy
Answers given are for informational purposes only and are not meant to replace an in-person examination.