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Linda Simmon
Linda Simmon, Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 5639
Experience:  MVB MRCVS
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My 19 month old working cocker spaniel has recently been

Customer Question

Hi
my 19 month old working cocker spaniel has recently been having a phantom pregnancy, we were asking about having her spayed and our vet has put that off for the time being.
Yesterday she started to get very close to us sitting with my wife and ramming her rear end up very close she doesnt normally do that. today she is insisting on getting/climbing on my lap as much as she can.
she has also been snorting quite alot over the past couple of days. She is just showing some odd behaviour we have not seen before.
shes booked into vet but we cant get her in until Saturday.
she is eating ok, toilets are all normal. she might be panting a bit indoors more than usual. she is lively but not as much as usual abit quiet.
any advice would help
thank you.
JA: I'll do all I can to help. What seems to be the problem with the Cocker Spaniel?
Customer: Hi
my 19 month old working cocker spaniel has recently been having a phantom pregnancy, we were asking about having her spayed and our vet has put that off for the time being.
Yesterday she started to get very close to us sitting with my wife and ramming her rear end up very close she doesnt normally do that. today she is insisting on getting/climbing on my lap as much as she can.
she has also been snorting quite alot over the past couple of days. She is just showing some odd behaviour we have not seen before.
shes booked into vet but we cant get her in until Saturday.
she is eating ok, toilets are all normal. she might be panting a bit indoors more than usual. she is lively but not as much as usual abit quiet.
any advice would help
thank you.
JA: Where does the Cocker Spaniel seem to hurt?
Customer: not sure shes in any pain as such a bit agitated maybe
JA: OK. No obvious pain. What is the Cocker Spaniel's name?
Customer: Honey
JA: Is there anything else the Vet should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: i dont think so, my wife got up with last night acouple of times
Submitted: 17 days ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 17 days ago.

Hello, this is Dr Linda, a UK based vet.

I'm sorry to hear Honey is experiencing a phantom pregnancy as I know some dogs can become quite uncomfortable and out of sorts.

We advise waiting until the pseudopregnancy is completely finished to spay, otherwise we can cause signs to persist by spaying too early.

Personality changes and new behaviours aren't uncommon due to the hormonal surge. Some dogs become extra clingy and anxious, while others may even act possessive and aggressive.

Her new sitting habit and desire to be very close to you is likely caused by mild anxiety. You may find a few things help such as:


  • Starting a few days of calming supplements such as Zylkene

  • The use of an Adaptil collar or plug in

  • Encouraging lots of exercise and brain games such as scent work, agility and training. Obviously, just what she is up for, as she may feel a bit lethargic.

  • Keeping her occupied with food puzzles and chews

Some bitches feel nauseous and this can lead to panting and a slight appetite decrease. You may find a few days of a bland diet such as chicken and rice helps.

The snorting is not expected and I'm not sure what that could be. I don't suspect it is linked to her false pregnancy. She may have something else going on such as a mild viral infection, foreign body (such as a grass seed) in her nose or allergic rhinitis (like hay fever). If this persists, it is best if she is examined by a vet.

For most dogs, symptoms pass and no treatment is needed. However, if she is really not enjoying life and the false pregnancy is sticking around, there is a medicine available your vet can prescribe. As the medicine can cause side effects, we only use it when necessary.

Customer: replied 17 days ago.
ok thank you, ***** ***** to make sense, she is trembling a bit too, we think its the phantom pregnancy as well.
we'll keep her close and see how she is.
we are booked in at vets on Saturday, my wife thinks its hormonal based as well.
we just wanted to make sure she is ok until vets on Sat.
thanks so much for your speedy responce
we are grateful
Thank you again.
Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 17 days ago.

I understand.

|f possible, I would want to check her temperature is normal (between 37.9 and 38.8 ' c) if she will allow you to check with a rectal thermometer.

Her gums should be pink and wet and her breathing should be steady and no faster than 30 breaths a minute when at rest.

Expert:  Linda Simmon replied 16 days ago.

I hope this helps and please let me know if you have any further questions.

Take care.