Noticing something out of the ordinary with your pet is never enjoyable, and a new cough can worry even the most experienced owners. Most of the time, this is nothing to worry about – everyone coughs occasionally now and then!
But if your Cavapoo has developed a new, continuous cough, it might be down to illness. The most common causes include infections, allergies, and kennel cough. More serious explanations can include heart disease and cancer.
Today we’ll be looking at seven potential causes for your Cavapoo coughing.
Infections Can Cause Coughing
The most common cause of coughing in Cavapoos is infection. This could be bacteria, viruses, parasites, or fungi. If an infection gets into their upper respiratory tract, airways, lung tissue, or a combination of these, they’ll likely develop a cough.
That’s because the infection will inflame and irritate the respiratory system. The body will then create an involuntary coughing action.
Kennel cough is a common infection that has coughing as a symptom. There are many causes for kennel cough, and it’s often used as an umbrella term for many viruses and bacterial infections.
This parasite causes an infection in the pulmonary artery and right heart ventricle. They’re less common than heartworms, but it might be a cause of your dog’s sudden cough. Lungworms are caught by earring prey infected with the parasite.
Canine Influenza Virus
The levels of CIV seen in the US are rapidly increasing, so this is another common infection that can cause coughing in Cavapoos. Other symptoms include nasal discharge and a fever.
How Are Canine Coughs Due To Infections Treated?
When your dog has an infection-induced cough, support is the best medicine. Allow them to have plenty of rest, food, and water. Don’t put too much pressure on them in regard to training or exercise until their cough has subsided.
You might also be able to get your dog some cough suppressants from your vet if the cough is severe enough. You could also add humidifiers around your home to make the environment more comfortable.
Avoid spraying any chemicals in the air, don’t burn incense, and smoke away from your pet.
If your Cavapoo has a bacterial infection, it will need antibiotics to kick the illness. A viral infection should resolve itself on its own. Your vet will be able to give you any medicine your dog needs for fungi or parasite infections.
Allergies And Coughing
Another common reason your Cavapoo has developed a cough is allergies. Dogs have more sensitive immune systems to allergens than humans, so you might not even consider environmental allergens around your dog to be harmful.
Common allergens that can start your Cavapoo coughing include:
- Smoke (from smoking or cooking)
- Ingredients in food
- Pet dander
- Human dander
While these things might not cause allergies right away, constant exposure to them over months or years might cause your Cavapoo to develop sensitivities.
How Are Canine Allergies Treated?
The treatment for allergies depends largely on what has caused the allergies in your dog. If the allergen is something that can be removed from your dog’s environment, then this is the simplest and easiest way to stop them from coughing. For more information on household items that are toxic to dogs, check out our informative guide.
You might also consider adding a humidifier to your space, as these can help eliminate allergens in the environment.
For severe allergies, your vet can prescribe the use of a bronchodilator or anti-inflammatory medication, which can open the airways and relieve the coughing fits.
Dogs Can Suffer From Reverse Sneezing
We know what you’re thinking – this article is about coughing, not sneezing. Well, reverse sneezing isn’t technically a cough at all. However, many dog owners mistake the sound for a cough, so you might have accidentally diagnosed this as a cough when it’s not.
Your dog might be suffering from reverse sneezing due to postnasal drainage, inflammation of the nasal passages, parasites, or foreign material up their nose.
When infrequent, reverse sneezes are nothing to worry about. Most dogs suffer from them without any consequences.
However, if you find that they’re becoming frequent, or they’re paired with nasal discharge or a change in your dog’s face, you should take them to see a vet right away.
How Are Canine Reverse Sneezes Treated?
Most cases of reverse sneezing require no medical treatment at all. If you catch your dog in a reverse sneezing episode, stroke its neck to calm them down. Cover their nostrils to force them to swallow, as this should flush the irritant away.
If your dog has parasites or foreign material up their nose, your vet might prescribe medication or surgery to remove the irritant. But this is very uncommon!
Heart Disease Can Cause Coughing
Surprisingly, many types of heart disease also have coughing listed as a symptom. These include Dilated Cardiomyopathy, Mitral Valve Endocardiosis, and Congestive Heart Failure.
While this is not the most common cause of coughing, it’s worth noting in case your dog shows other symptoms.
How Is Canine Heart Disease Treated?
The treatment for heart disease depends on the type your dog is suffering from. To determine this, you’ll need to talk to your vet, who can give you the best cause of treatment.
The majority of these will include medications to help your dog’s heart pump more naturally, reduce fluid buildup, and steady their blood pressure. Surgery is also an effective treatment, including pacemakers.
Leveling out the other, more serious symptoms of heart disease should see a reduction in their coughing fits.
Coughing is also a symptom of Heartworm Disease (not to be confused with Heart Disease!). Dogs can catch Heartworm Disease when a mosquito stings an infected dog, picks up the parasite, and then stings another dog to pass the parasite to them.
Heartworm Disease is spread through larvae, which will migrate through the body to the heart and lungs. They will then mature into long worms that inflame the lungs and cause bouts of coughing.
How Is Canine Heartworm Disease Treated?
There is a medication that you can give your dog to prevent Heartworm Disease, which is very effective. You should do this to prevent the parasite from infecting your dog in the first place.
This is important as once your dog gets heartworms, they will need extensive and painful treatment for 6 to 9 months. Not only is this expensive, but it can also be fatal. However, untreated heartworms are also fatal, so risky treatment is necessary.
Foreign Objects In The Airways
Dogs can inhale objects through their noses when exploring, which can inflame the airways and cause coughing. Cavapoos are very inquisitive dogs, so they might be inclined to inhale more foreign objects than lap dogs.
The object could be as small as a single blade of grass. Many dogs are given a much more sinister prognosis before further tests show the irritant to be a blade of grass.
How Are Foreign Objects In The Airways Treated?
Coughing is actually the body’s way of flushing the object out of the airways. However, if this doesn’t work, your vet might need to remove it using an endoscope. This is a small camera that goes into your dog’s nose so that the vet can see the obstruction.
In severe cases, your dog might need surgery to remove the object if it cannot be reached with the endoscope.
If left untreated, foreign objects can lead to lung abscesses, pneumonia, pyothorax, pneumothorax, and other worrying conditions.
Coughing Can Be The First Sign Of Cancer
We don’t want to alarm you with this final cause of coughing in your Cavapoo, but in rare cases, coughing can be linked to cancer. Bear in mind that there are many other illnesses that coughing could be due to, so you don’t always have to think of the worst-case scenario.
Coughing is often one of the first signs an owner notices, and it can be linked to lung cancer, heart cancer, or respiratory tract cancer.
How Is Canine Cancer Treated?
There are many cancer treatments available for dogs, and the best one will be determined by your vet, depending on the stage of cancer and type. Common treatments include chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, and palliative care.
Thanks for reading! We hope this article has shed some light on why your Cavapoo might be coughing. It might be something as simple as allergies or an infection, or it might be something more serious like cancer or heartworm disease.
If your Cavapoo is only coughing once in a while, there’s usually nothing to worry about.
However, if they have developed a relentless new cough, you might want to get it checked out. If you’re concerned, it’s always best to check with a professional vet – better to be safe than sorry!
Want to learn more about your Cavapoo? Read on to understand more about your Cavapoo’s behaviors.