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Ask Dr. Laura Devlin, DVM, DABVP Your Own...
Dr. Laura Devlin, DVM, DABVP
Dr. Laura Devlin, DVM, DABVP, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 1801
Experience:  >10 years practicing veterinary medicine including exotics, fish, reptiles. Canine/feline specialist
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Dr. Laura Devlin, DVM, DABVP is online now

Poppy is 8 yrs old. We got her from rescue centre a yr ago

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Poppy is 8 yrs old. We got her from rescue centre a yr ago & she had kennel cough. She was treated. She has gained lots of weight, even tho we have not over fed her. She sounds like her lungs are full of mucus, she coughs occasionally, her bark is going and drinks water constantly. She hasn't just gained weight, but her body is really swollen. The vets done.blood tests (not found anything) & has her on vetoryl.
Hello, and thank you for your question.
I am Dr. Devlin, and I am happy to assist you with Poppy.
I am so sorry to hear of her health problems. It sounds like she has cushing's disease and has some significant other problems as well.
Because her case is so complicated, it would be helpful to have some additional information:
-Have x-rays of her throat and chest been taken recently?
- Have you had lab work in the last 3 months specifically to test her cortisol levels and vetoryl dose? (acth stim test)
- is she on any other medications or supplements?
Lastly, are you mostly concerned with her breathing issues?
I'll be standing by to help.
Dr. Laura
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
She is taking vetoryl at the moment but the vet seems reluctant to X-ray her. He has taken 2 separate blood tests but says they were clear.
Karen - did he say why he was reluctant? If she is hyper or panting, she may need sedation, but there are some mild options I would typically use in dogs with respiratory issues and cushings disease. More valium-type medications.
I would think some x-rays of her heart, lungs, and throat would be important. We can see breathing issues due to cushings and weight gain, but not coughing. I do see more chronic bronchitis in this breed, but infection, heart disease, or chronic airway disease are all possibilities. In addition, it is always important to rule out a tumor or cancer in older pets. I don't want to scare you and this doesn't seem as likely.
With the loss of voice, while she is there, your vet may also want to examine her upper airways (larynx) and make sure she doesn't have any problems in that location affecting her voice.
Has her thyroid been checked? That can cause airway weakness and change in bark quality.
I'm not sure blood tests would be much help. The vetoryl should be monitored closely (i know it is expensive to do so) to make sure her cushings is well controlled so that doesn't contribute to ongoing problems.
I hope this was helpful. Please let me know what other questions you may have.
Dr. Laura
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