If your Chihuahua is coughing, it is usually a symptom of a larger health problem which you need to treat. Diagnosing what this is can be tricky but don’t worry, as this article with help you to discover what your Chihuahua problem actually is so you can get it treated quickly.
In order to diagnose what your Chihuahua is suffering from, you need to observe the other symptoms your Chihuahua has along with its cough and how long these last for. You also need to think whether your Chi has been in kennels recently.
Infrequent Coughing & Gagging which last only for a few seconds
This is most likely a hair ball and not something you need to be worried about. Dogs and cats eat hair and grass when they have an upset stomach. If the hair balls are unusually large, you can give your Chi cut up fiber bread as a substitute to stop her eating too much hair.
Coughing after your Chihuahua has been in a kennel
If you have recently brought your Chihuahua puppy home from the kennels and she is coughing, she may well be suffering from “kennel cough“. This is sometimes accompanied with large amounts of phlegm which your dog throws up.Kennel cough is a highly contagious disease which is why so may dogs catch it. Unfortunately there is no direct cure (although medication can help) and the best way to deal with it is prevention. Make sure you get your Chihuahua vaccinated before putting her in kennels.
Even without medication, kennel cough will usually go away after a few weeks but secondary infections which could result in pneumonia are a real risk, and this is the main reason why vaccination is so important.
Frequent coughing, choking, gagging, hacking or wheezing as if your Chihuahua is struggling for breath which continues for 0 – 30 seconds
This might be a throat infection for which the best course is a visit to the vet for antibiotics. However, a more common reason for this is a collapsing trachea which frequently affects smaller dog breeds and restricts your Chi’s air flow and causing coughing and breathing difficulties. If you want to learn more about this and how to treat it, go to my page on common Chihuahua health problems where you’ll find specific information on collapsing tracheas.
Frequently coughing and wheezing which makes a honking sound and continues for 0 – 30 seconds
This condition is called ‘reverse sneezing’ and although it can be quite scary the first time for both you and your Chihuahua, it is easily treated. You can tell if your dog has a problem with a collapsing trachea or a reverse sneeze by how she is exhaling. If she is exhaling through her mouth then it is a due to a collapsing trachea and if it is through her nose it is a reverse sneeze. To find out more, go to my page on common Chihuahua health problems which has information on how to treat this.
Coughing After Running Around Or Playing Energetically
Your Chihuahua’s energy has got the better of her and this has made her cough. You can help her to calm down by massaging her throat or neck and talking to her soothingly. You can also help her in the future not to get so worked up by encouraging her not to get excited and calming her down before she begins to cough.
Coughing Which Lasts Longer Than 1 Minute
It is best to see your vet about this since this could potentially be a more serious health problem which needs to be resolved as soon as possible.