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What to Do If My Senior Boston Terrier x Chihuahua’s Respiratory Infection Treatment Fails?


Dear VetBabble,

I have an 11-year-old female Boston Terrier x Chihuahua dog who has been under vet care since mid-August for a supposed lower respiratory infection. She was put on oral antibiotics, prednisone, and codeine cough syrup, but nothing seems to be working, and her nose is still stuffed up. She sneezes a lot, and sometimes there’s green/yellow snot. What should I do next, considering the current treatment plans aren’t helping or her symptoms are worsening?

Addressing Respiratory Infections in Dogs

It’s disheartening to see our furry friends suffering from respiratory issues. First and foremost, it’s essential to work closely with your veterinarian or seek a specialist if your dog’s condition is not improving or worsening. In this article, we will discuss some common causes of respiratory issues in dogs, potential treatment options, and general advice for concerned pet owners.

Understanding the Causes of Respiratory Issues

There are various reasons why your dog may be experiencing respiratory problems. Commonly, it could be due to a cold or flu, similar to what humans may have. Other possibilities include a more severe condition such as kennel cough or even an allergy. To better understand the underlying issues your dog may be facing, we recommend reading our articles, “Does My Dog Have a Cold?” and “Does My Cat have a Flu?”

Does My Dog Have a Cold?

Does My Cat have a Flu?

Another potential cause of your dog’s respiratory issues may be kennel cough. Kennel cough is a highly contagious respiratory disease affecting dogs, often characterized by a persistent cough. Bordetella is one of the primary bacteria responsible for kennel cough. Learn more about kennel cough, its treatment, and prevention methods in our article, “Bordetella: How to Treat and Prevent Kennel Cough in Dogs.”

Bordetella: How to Treat and Prevent Kennel Cough in Dogs

Exploring Treatment Options and Further Diagnostics

Since the current treatment plan does not seem to be working for your dog, it may be time to consider additional diagnostics and alternative treatment methods. For instance, a thorough physical examination, blood tests, and X-rays might help provide a clearer picture of your dog’s health status and what could be causing the persistent respiratory symptoms.

Moreover, you might consider visiting an internal medicine specialist who may have more specialized testing methods to pinpoint the exact issue. A specialist could better guide you on what further steps need to be taken and whether alternative medications or therapies might be more effective. At times, coughing in dogs might also demand additional focus on diagnosis and treatments. For further information, check out our article on “Coughing in Dogs: Types, Diagnoses and Treatment.”

Coughing in Dogs: Types, Diagnoses and Treatment

Final Thoughts

It can be worrisome to see our pets struggling with respiratory problems, especially when the conventional treatment options are not working. However, by working closely with your veterinarian, seeking additional diagnostics, and possibly consulting an internal medicine specialist, you can more effectively address your dog’s health problems and provide them with the care they need. Remember, early detection and timely intervention can make a massive difference in your pet’s overall health and well-being.

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