laryngeal paralysis

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Debbie
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laryngeal paralysis

Post by Debbie »

My 11 1/2 year old male was just diagnosed with laryngeal paralysis. This is apparently not uncommon in older larger dogs although both my vet and the internist and surgical vets we were referred to both said it was very unusual to see in a Brittany. :cry:

Anyway, there is no cure although surgery is an option when the symptoms become worse. However, there is a pretty high complication rate from the surgery possible. I would love to e-mail off-line with anyone who has had a dog diagnosed with this - particularly if they did decide to have the surgery. Thanks!!

Rebecca
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Post by Rebecca »

I am intersted in this even though I have not insite for you. Tell me what exactly is this desease? HOw did you find out your dog had this?

Cindy
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Post by Cindy »

I don't have any direct experience, but our neighbor's Shephard mix was diagnosed with this a couple years ago. They didn't do surgery and he's been fine. Of course his singing voice has certainly suffered!

Debbie
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Post by Debbie »

Readers Digest version of the disease as I understand it:

The larnyx (which is the tube that the dog breathes through) normally opens and closes with each breathe. In this disease, the larnyx stops opening and closing and basically remains open all the time although the opening is quite a bit smaller than with a normal breathe.

The result of this is they tend to pant a lot and with exercise or heat, when they really pant, they can start to have diffifculty getting enough air and the panting can become labored, loud and quite raspy in nature. That is what we noticed with our dog - excessive panting that could be very raspy at time, coughing and even wheezing at times.

There is no cure and really not much in the way of treatment options either. They gave us some tranquilizers to use if he becomes "stressed". Basically if he has been out playing or something and starts to really pant, then he can't get enough air so he gets upset and pants harder, can't get enough air, etc. Basically like a panic attack. So you can give him them to help him relax and slow down the panting.

However, the possibility always exists in one of these attacks that larnyx will go into spams and he won't be able to get any air. In that case he has to be rushed to the vet where they would either do a tracheostomy or something to open the airway.

The surgical option is they go in and basically tack back one side of the larnyx permanently - that keeps it open all the time and wide enough they can always get enough air. The downside to this is that the larnyx normally closes when they eat and drink to keep food/water out of the lungs. So there is a much increased chance of aspiration and pneumonia after the surgery.

As you can see - no good option. Of course the surgeon wants to cut (grin!!) and the internist says it's up to us but we can always wait and hope he doesn't have any crisis so that's kind of where we are now. Just trying to get as much information as we can so we make the right decision for our boy.

Right now the only affect on him is he just can't handle the heat at all. About a 10 minute walk and he is panting and wheezing and I have to bring him back in the house. If I take him out at night when it's cooler - he does much better and can handle his normal 1/2 hour walks. He still chases his younger Britt brother around the house. However he does seem to tire quicker but is that the disease or the fact the he is 11 1/2. Who knows.

Debbie

Kathy Knappenberger
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Post by Kathy Knappenberger »

Debbie,

Sebastian had Laryngeal Paralysis and it is ultimately what caused us to put him to sleep in May 2003. He was probably around the same age as your britt, though we don't know for sure. We decided not to do the surgery for multiple reasons. Sebastian was a major chowhound and would wolf down his food so I was concerned that he would not make it more than a few months after the surgery anyway because of the high probability of pneumonia. Plus the cost was very high for an operation that would probably not give a great outcome.

The hardest decision for us was when to let him go because he was otherwise spunky and had great zest for life in between episodes. My husband thinks we waited too long, but I couldn't let him go until he had a very bad episode where he could barely stand up to walk outside and his nose/tongue actually had a blue tinge from lack of oxygen. Then I knew it was not fair to him to keep him with us. I can give you more details off-line if you email me.

Kathy

Jen
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Post by Jen »

Debbie,

My little Wednesday was diagnosed with this when she was 6 months old. They wanted to do surgery, but we opted against it because she was so young. Well now she is at the ripe old age of 11 and aside from a few small episodes there hasn't been any problems. We try to keep her in as much as possible on the hot humid days. I have worked on building up her endurance by taking her on daily walks in early morning or late evening and using a harness instead of a collar. We have found that for her when she is having an attack we make her lay on her side and put her on the bathroom floor and just sit with her and keep her calm. Not sure why but it really seems to help her.

The best thing you can do is too stay calm even though it sounds and looks really bad. And remember if they are making rasping noises, they ARE getting air.

Jen

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Recent LP Diagnois on 10 year old male Orange and White

Post by Ultimate Grocery Getter »

I'm glad I found this thread as Rolo, my 10 year old Orange and White Britanny was recently diagnosed with LP or Laryngeal Paralysis. He had his first episode last November. He was panting alot and his breathing was very raspy.

Our vet examinied him and diagnosed him with LP. She said it is more previlant with larger dogs and not seen much with Brittanies. She has prescribed an anti anxiety drug for him which I have to pick up at the Target pharmacy. Makes for fun conversation as the pharmacist is warning me about drowsiness and operating heavy equipment.

The episodes are at there worst at night or when he is resting. Otherwise, when he is running or playing with our other Brittany, he is fine. The medication may help him cope but he sounds terrible. Surgery is expensive and the outcomes are almost as bad as LP. If it gets worse, we may opt to put him down which really breaks my heart.

I was wondering if others have had their Brit diagnosed with LP and what treatments you used?

Canned Ice
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Post by Canned Ice »

I don't know anything about LP but I do pick up Buckley's anti-anxiety meds from the Target pharmacy. I love it when a new person is working and they ask if they can speak with Buckley about his medication.
Buckley - I own this mountain.
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Kathy
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Post by Kathy »

I love it when a new person is working and they ask if they can speak with Buckley about his medication.
:lol: I teach pharmacy students & it was soooo hard to keep a straight face when the pharmacy intern (a student) offered to counsel Duke on his phenobarb.
Right now the only affect on him is he just can't handle the heat at all. About a 10 minute walk and he is panting and wheezing and I have to bring him back in the house.
My Hunter has LP too. He is probably 11; we adopted him through ABR 2 years ago. He has problems when going for a walk. This year is pretty bad - he can no longer handle a 1/2mile 'round the block walk. I just take it at his pace, and walk him in cooler weather.

I didn't realize that LP could deteriorate into a life threatening situation. Now at least I know what to look for 'cause if it gets bad, we're running off to the emergency vet.

-Kathy

swillow66
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Post by swillow66 »

Though never official diagnosed with it, my in-laws cocker used to do the same exact thing. They would just hold her and calm her down with long strokes under the chin down the throat area. Some episodes were longer than others, but the main part was to keep her calm.

I guess I would keep a log of how many episodes, how long they lasted and if anything in particular brought it on (allergies, change in diet, particularly busy day when he may be more tired/relaxed at night, etc) . While the episodes are always scary, I guess I'd have to really evaluate if they are so medically serious or not to warrant surgery. Surgery and recovery on a 10 year can be more difficult.

PS - Welcome to the board. Can't wait to see a picture of your happy Rolo!! :lol: :lol: Shelli
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kat
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Post by kat »

My 13 yr old foster pants and breaths quite loudly much of the time. Last wknd she seemed worse, panting loudly and pacing almost frantically, and by the time I got her in to the vet on Mon, she seemed to be in a full-flown panic attack. the vet mentioned LP at first, but then got their behaviorist to come in, and they thought this was one heck of a panic attack and wanted me to take her to the neurologist. On the slight chance it was her new seizure meds, we stopped that and she did improve greatly. BUT, the weather had also cooled down considerably. Now, it's warming up, and the loud, raspy, wheezy panting is back. For those of you with dogs with LP, does this sound familiar? She can lay down and breath normally and quietly, but as soon as she's up and moving around, it starts again. She has always panted a bit more than the others, but it has gotten worse as the weather has warmed. We moved her out of our bedroom because she paces and pants so loudly all through the night that we get no sleep. She does not look comfortable when she's like this, so I worry about that part.
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Annie's Mom
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Post by Annie's Mom »

Debbie, I PM'd you.
Terry

dbstroup
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laryngeal paralysis

Post by dbstroup »

I have read the old posts about this ailment but I would like to talk to anyone who has any new info. My 12 yr old britt was just diagnosed with laryngeal paralysis and I really don't feel that surgery is the best option for him. I would like to know what other people have done and why and also the results. I also just had to put down one of my other britts in March and my third britt is 14 yrs. old and very arthritic and not getting around well at all. It has not been a very good year for our britt family. Feel free to pm me if anyone has any advice. Thank you
Debbie

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Post by adleblanc »

My parents have a 14 year old britt how was diagnosed last fall with this. Our vet told us during extreme cold and heat to limit excerise. No more long walks...just down the street sometimes just down the driveway. If the weather conditions aren't good for him we just to keep him inside and only goes out for potty breaks. Brett sleeps a lot so we don't have to worry about him working himself up. By doing these things are vet suggested as really worked well for him. Brett also has arthritis which we tried a prescription fro the vet but we didn't notice a difference.

Andrea

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Post by Annie's Mom »

Debbie,
I have 13 yr. old collie/shepherd mix that was diagnosed this week :cry:
We have chosen not to have the surgery as he has other health issues as well.
We cannot let him get overheated or over exert himself. Thank God for air conditioning!
Right now we are just keeping an eye on him and loving him all we can. When his breathing becomes too
difficult we will know it is time to help him to the bridge. My heart breaks just thinking about it, but I promised him, as I have other pups in the past, that I won't allow him to suffer. I owe him that. He has given me so much.
Love and enjoy your guy while you can. That's what I am going to do.
Terry

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