Pneumonia in dogs: symptoms, treatment

Pneumonia in dogs (pneumonia) is an inflammatory process in the lung tissue. Veterinarians distinguish several types of this disease. All of them differ in the causes of development, as well as symptoms. If you do not treat this ailment, then the animal may begin irreversible changes in the body.


Types of pneumonia

Pneumonia in dogs

There are several varieties of this disease in four-legged pets:

  • Bacterial pneumonia is always infectious. Often it develops as a secondary complication of bronchotracheitis, tracheitis, and also as a result of contact of a foreign body in the larynx, bronchi of the animal.
  • Parasitic inflammation develops due to falling into the lungs worms, worms larvae. They can penetrate the lung tissue as a result of movement through the body.
  • Viral pneumonia develops due to complications of the viral plague .

All types of pneumonia are extremely dangerous for puppies, as well as for older individuals. It is extremely rare that such a pathology develops in physically strong dogs.

In addition, the type of exudate formed pneumonia can be purulent, serous. The hardest form of pneumonia, when fibrin begins to fall into the lumen of the alveoli of the lungs, is called croupous. Without the help of a veterinarian, an animal can die in just a few hours.

Causes of illness

When pathogenic bacteria enter the lungs in the dog's body, inflammatory processes develop. Among them, streptococci, staphylococci and other pathogenic microorganisms are particularly dangerous. As a rule, the dog's body copes with them, provided the immune system functions normally.

However, when immunity is weakened, such bacteria activate their activity and penetrate into the lung tissue. This occurs if the following predisposing factors affect the animal's body:

  • temperature changes;
  • contact with infected animals;
  • poor quality and inadequate nutrition;
  • poor dog conditions;
  • penetration of infectious agents with food;
  • immunoglobulin deficiency;
  • injuries.

The disease can also occur due to aspiration of foreign bodies into animals. There are frequent cases when pneumonia was caused by insects that fell into the lung tissue as a result of inhalation.

Features of the disease

Regardless of the form and cause of pneumonia, its course has three stages:

  • The initial stage of the disease lasts an average of five days. Pneumonia has mild symptoms. The condition of the dog is often satisfactory.
  • The secondary stage is characterized by rapid manifestation of all symptoms of the disease. Duration - no more than ten days.
  • At the final stage, either the animal recovers or is killed as a result of irreversible changes in the lung tissue.

The course of pneumonia in dogs is mild, moderate, severe, and extremely severe. In addition, pneumonia can be acute and chronic.

Symptoms of pneumonia in dogs

If pneumonia occurs, animal owners should pay particular attention to the following characteristic symptoms:

  • Cough. The animal coughs very loudly. With coughing movements, the pet feels pain. After a while, some muffledness and softness appear in the sounds of coughing.
  • Increased body temperature of the animal. The dog refuses to eat, but she eagerly drinks (this means that she has a feeling of thirst).
  • Fever (manifested as an alternation of high and normal temperatures). Her horse racing debilitates and exhausts the dog.
  • Shortness of breath, shortness of breath . A runny nose appears. Crusts accumulate near the openings of the nose.
  • The tongue, as well as the surface of the oral mucosa, acquire a bluish, sometimes gray tint. This color indicates a violation of gas exchange.
  • Heart rate increases .
  • Growing weakness throughout the body.
  • Lymphadenopathy (a vet may notice this symptom).
  • Weight loss
  • With percussion, dull areas are heard.
  • It is difficult for a dog to lie on the side of the affected lung . If the inflammation has spread to both lungs, it will be difficult for the dog to lie in any position.

In critical conditions, the body does not receive enough oxygen.

Diagnosing pneumonia

The diagnosis of pneumonia is made on the basis of anamnesis, as well as X-ray and fluoroscopy. X-ray examination of the chest should be held in two projections to more accurately determine the state of the lungs.

In doubtful cases, an x-ray examination of the esophagus with the use of a contrast agent is necessary. It is necessary to make a general and biochemical blood test.

Pneumonia must be differentiated from such diseases:

  • inflammation of the nasal mucosa;
  • inflammation of the larynx;
  • bronchitis and tracheobronchitis;
  • sinusitis;
  • acute tonsillitis;
  • lung abscess.

Treatment of pneumonia in dogs in the hospital

Antibiotics for dogs with pneumonia

The main task of treating inflammation in the lungs of dogs is to stabilize their condition and rid the body of pathogens as completely as possible.

In the hospital, it is preferable to give dogs antibiotics . Mostly antibiotics are prescribed in the form of injections: their effect is much more effective. An injection treatment method allows the active substance to penetrate deep into the lungs and reach inflammatory foci. Antibacterial drugs are selected so that they can effectively affect all types of bacteria.

Before starting treatment with antibiotics, you should test for allergic sensitivity to them. And in order to determine the sensitivity of the dog to certain drugs, the doctor performs a tracheal washout.

As physiotherapeutic activities, doctors do chest massage. It helps to remove phlegm from the lungs. The procedure is done until the pet has a cough.

In severe forms of pneumonia, accompanied by respiratory failure, oxygen therapy is prescribed. When the effectiveness of such treatment is poor, artificial lung ventilation is prescribed. The animal breathes a mixture of air, which is up to 40% oxygen. Due to the fact that pure oxygen has a toxic effect on lung tissue, higher oxygen concentrations are not recommended.

If the animal refuses to eat, he has pronounced violations of the chair, then he is appointed infusion. In a hospital, it is possible to monitor diuresis, the number of respiratory movements. All these parameters are extremely important for continuous monitoring of the activities of the dog's body affected by pneumonia.

The prognosis of lung inflammation in a dog is serious and depends on the severity of the disease, as well as the condition of the body.

Features of the treatment of pneumonia in dogs at home

Massage dog with pneumonia

Massage dog with pneumonia

Healing activities at home begin only after the normalization of the animal's condition, the restoration of normal appetite. It is mandatory to adhere to the following rules:

  • cough cannot be suppressed with special drugs - suppressors;
  • at least four times a day, massage should be done (tapping of the chest) to stimulate cough activity and remove secretions from the bronchi;
  • in the cold season not to bring the dog into the cold;
  • antibiotic should be given strictly according to indications and according to the instructions;
  • periodically need to do a dog x-ray.
  • light exercise is beneficial to the pet.

Therapy with the use of folk remedies and methods is not only completely useless, but also totally unacceptable. The fact is that it is possible to overcome the causative agents of severe disease only with the help of modern and highly effective antibiotics. They should be taken only if they are prescribed by a doctor. Self-medication is unacceptable!

Acceptance of herbs that strengthen the immune system, is admissible only if the condition is fully stabilized and the inflammation foci are removed.

How to protect your pet from pneumonia

Preventing such a serious illness as pneumonia is always a lot easier than treating. In some cases, the treatment is very difficult and long, and later a visit to the doctor can cause a fatal outcome.

To prevent this disease, you can use certain preventive measures:

  • treatment of diseases that can cause pneumonia;
  • elimination of chronic lesions of the lungs;
  • prevent overcooling of the animal;
  • good care, quality and nutrition;
  • strengthening the immune system;
  • exclusion of contact with dogs suffering from pneumonia, as they spread a large number of pathogens of pneumonia.

Pneumonia in dogs is a serious disease with adverse consequences for the animal. Treatment is often long. Owners of animals need to be very careful to detect a possible disease at an early stage. The outcome of treatment will often depend on this.

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