Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Coughing update

For the last couple of days, Elvis' coughing has really increased. (And let me add here that his sneezing has been on the uptick, too. Ragweed has made an appearance in the pollen count as of four or five days ago, and I wonder if that isn't triggering some of this. We know he's sensitive to oak mold, so it's always possible that he's got some sensitivity to ragweed, as well.)

The odd thing about it is it's only in the late afternoon before his feeding and our dinner at 6:30. Unfortunately, the poor little guy sounds like he's coughing up a lung. Once he settles down, though, the majority of it quits. It's been pretty obvious that the trigger for this is elevated excitement, but once it's started, it takes hold.

This morning when I got up, and before I fed him, he coughed just a bit. It was the normal coughing I hear before he's had his Lasix. All day has been the same thing, but starting about 2 pm, his coughing escalated. Torbutrol has handled most of it, but this afternoon, I decided to bump up his Prednisone.

This is something Dr. Walthall and I talked about a couple of months ago. He can go up to 1 full pill (5 mg) a day for a short period of time (four or five days), but his weight has to be monitored because Prednisone can cause fluid retention. In a dog with congestive heart failure, that can be a real concern.

I weighed him this afternoon and he was 8.6 lbs. I gave him the rest of a tablet that would make up 5 mg. (His pills are quartered, and he's usually only getting 1/4 per day.) I also gave him a Guafinison and 1/2 a Torbutrol. That was around 2:30.

I'm going to bump his Lasix up to 1 ml twice a day rather than .75 ml twice a day. He'll get Guafinison in the afternoon if he needs it, and Torbutrol as well. He's Prednisone will be a full 5 mg in the morning when Randall gives him his Enalapril.  If I don't see a serious improvement by Thursday afternoon, I'll give the clinic a call and get him in on Friday. 

About 10 minutes ago, everyone was outside and I called them to come in. Elvis came tearing in from the back of the yard. Full tilt run, and no coughing or wheezing. This is good. One of my concerns with him is pneumonia, but his lungs are sounding clear.

I'll post another update in a day or so.

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