Join Date: Aug 2013
Location: New Brunswick Canada
Cough progressively worsening
I'm in a bit of a bind, and I'd like some more heads to help me figure out what's up.
When we purchased spirit in the fall, she had a very very slight cough. I'd hear her cough once in the morning a few times a week.
When the snow fell, it began to be two or three coughs a couple days a week.
Now, she coughs five to six times a day, every day. It is a dry cough, and only one or two at a time. It's not brought on by exercise.
Yesterday we went for a nice slow trail ride, four km in two hours as it was a bit icy, and kept it to a walk only. After about half an hour, I noticed her nostrils were flared. They stayed flared (and not just smelling kind of flared, just big round holes) and the capillaries/skin inside her nostrils were bright red.
She was not breathing very hard, a bit harder than when at rest, but when we stopped for a pee break and she got to stand for a bit her nostrils returned to normal. Fifteen minutes of walking and again she was flared and breathing a bit hard. She's not overweight, and she's in decent shape.
When we returned home and let her loose she coughed 3-4 times. Again that dry cough.
The hay she eats is of good or decent quality, not too dusty apart from the odd bale. She gets hay only nearly 24/7.
She has no nasal discharge. I am going to listen to her breathing tomorrow with the stethoscope to see if I can hear anything off, and the vet has been notified. Oddly enough, when the vet was out to do a complete exam, she didn't say anything about her breathing and said her cough was normal. I don't want to go against my vet but she seems to be getting worse and worse over time.
I was thinking about putting her on a respiratory supplement, as a preventative measure, but am unsure of where to start. There are many, many supplements out there and I got a bit overwhelmed figuring out what would work best.