A Dog Sore Throat (Odd Malady, or Sign of Something Bigger?)
There are a few minor illnesses that we and our dogs can experience. This doesn’t mean we can make our dog sick; it just means we can sympathize with what they’re going through. One of these conditions is a sore throat. But is this ailment a precursor to something else?
A Sore Throat is an Uncommon Ailment
Even though a dog can get a sore throat, the condition is somewhat rare in canines. It is also one that is difficult to diagnose on its own, simply because of the nature of the condition. But like in our case, if a dog does indeed have the condition, it will usually be accompanied by symptoms that indicate an overarching condition.
For instance, the sore throat can be a sign that your four-legged friend has caught a virus or is dealing with bacteria. In this instance, you'll see issues that look similar to our issues when we develop a cold, such as watery eyes or a runny nose. You'll also notice symptoms that are somewhat exclusive to the canine set, such as a high-pitched gagging cough or a constant licking of the lips.
Another, more subtle condition that could be indicated by a sore throat is tonsillitis. Yes, dogs do have tonsils, and just as in the case of humans, they could cause a sore throat if they become swollen or inflamed during the process of fighting off an infection.
Can a Dog Develop a Sore Throat by Barking Too Much?
It is indeed possible for a dog’s throat to become sore through excessive barking. This makes sense from a physiological standpoint. After all, your dog uses his throat to produce the sharp and occasionally guttural sounds.
While it may be a bit tricky to associate a sore throat with excessive barking, the sound of your dog’s barking could be a clue as to the condition being afoot. Specifically, you’ll want to keep an ear out to see if the tone of your dog’s bark has shifted. If it starts sounding a bit hoarse, you may have a dog with a sore throat on your hands.
A Sore Throat’s Connection to Kennel Cough
Sometimes, a dog that appears to be dealing with a sore throat might actually have a condition called kennel cough. Typically benign yet highly contagious, this particular condition is brought upon by throat irritation brought upon by bacteria. Your dog may exhibit cold-like symptoms if he comes down with the condition, but the big tell-tales sign of the condition is a persistent, forceful cough that sounds like a honk from a goose.
How do you Treat a Dog’s Sore Throat?
If you suspect your dog has a sore throat, there are a few things that you can do to help him overcome the discomfort. Most of these remedies are simple, straightforward, and involve very little intervention from the part of your veterinarian. While a tonsillectomy may be recommended by your vet, bear in mind that such a recommendation only occurs under the rarest of circumstances.
If your dog is prone to eating dry, crunchy food, for example, you may want to consider switching to soft, wet food for a spell. This type of food tends to be digested easier than the rough stuff. It can also help to curb instances of irritation in the throat.
You may also want to consider some herbal remedies to help your pooch overcome his sore throat. Natural substances such as tea, honey, and coconut oil can work to soothe your pooch's throat which will in turn expedite the healing process - something your pooch may love, given the sweet-tasting nature of these substances. If you decide to take your pooch to the vet clinic to give him something more traditionally medicinal, your vet may prescribe an antibiotic or even an over-the-counter cough syrup.
Don’t Panic - It’s Not the End of the World!
If there is one thing you should bear in mind if you suspect that your dog has a sore throat, it’s to remind yourself that it’s really no big deal. Yes, your pooch may be in a little discomfort, but it really is a minor malady that can be treated with a little gentleness. You and your dog will be fine in the long run.