When dogs show cough and cold signs, cough medicine is the best solution. But western medicine may have some ingredients that could be harmful to the dogs. Even cough medicine prescribed by the vets contains some harmful ingredients for the dog.
In this article, we will discuss the harmful factors of cough medicine. Moreover, we will let you know some easy and effective home remedies against cough and cold in dogs. Also, we explain the reason behind cough and cold.
Why Do Dogs Cough?
When dogs cough, we assume that it is just a cold due to a drop in the temperature. Now that may not be the only reason. There are many bacteria and virus which causes cough and cold in dogs. However, all cold symptoms do not mean that the dog has a cold.
Bacteria, viruses even allergies can develop a cough, cold, runny nose, and congestion. Sometimes, severe health conditions such as laryngeal paralysis, lung problem even heart diseases can be the reason for the cough.
So, the essential part is to find the reason behind it. That is why you need to track the symptom. If it turns out to be worsening, immediately visit a vet for better options.
Why Giving Cough Medicine Isn’t a Good Idea?
Generally, when a dog starts to cough, the owner usually gives them cough medicine which consists of toxic elements. Those are harmful to them. Below are a few such harmful elements.
It is an active pain reliever like Tylon. Excess usage can turn into acetaminophen poisoning. Usually, a problem appears when the dosage exceeds 100 mg/kg. Even a single dose can poison toy breed or pups.
It is an effective medicine against pain and inflammation. However, it has a toxic effect on dogs. Symptoms appear like diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, and appetite loss. A heavy dose even leads to renal failure, Ataxia (nervous system degeneration), Shock, Seizures, Coma, and Death.
Read Also: What to Feed Your Dog to Regain Health
It is a decongestant present cold medicine. Excess usage symptoms are tremors, hyperactivity, and tachycardia.
It’s natural alcohol present in fruit, vegetable, and medicine. The symptom related to excess dosage is liver failure and hypoglycemia even death.
Daytime boost medicine got caffeine which is very reactive to dogs. The side effects are seizures, vomiting, and hyperactivity.
They consist of sedative effects used in allergies. The side effect on dogs can lead to long-term health problems.
Menthol is present in drops and syrup. It’s not toxic against dogs but irritates the lungs and gastrointestinal upset.
Most cough and cold medicine consist of alcohol that is quite harmful to the dog.
Artificial color is added to medicines for a better look and feel. It leads to allergies, cancer, and hyperactivity.
What about “Dog-Friendly” Cough Medicine?
Some cough medicines for dogs prescribed by the vets are not safe for the dog. Some of them contain dextromethorphan and guaifenesin.
This medicine is used against hacking dry cough. However, it has some side effects starting from diarrhea, and nausea that can lead to shivering and seizures. It is not prescribed for dogs that suffer from chronic cough, liver diseases, and skin allergies.
Also, it is not for dogs to take Monoamine oxidase inhibitors. Other side effects are collapse, muscle tension, incoordination, abnormal eye movement, vomiting, decreased appetite, drowsiness, excessive drooling, and tachycardia.
It helps loosen mucus in the throat and chest. The side effects are muscle rigidity, hypothermia, ataxia, abnormal breathing, vomiting, increased heart rate, tremors, changes in blood pressure, and vision problems.
Cough Medicine Poisoning
Cough medicine poisoning happens due to accidental overdose, a bottle of medicine chewed by a dog, and hypersensitivity of dogs toward certain medications. Drug overdose due to cough medicine has symptoms like hallucinations, tremors, increased heart rate, nausea, vomiting, and nervousness.
Serotonin Syndrome in Dogs
Serotonin is produced inside our bodies. It is found in cough syrup as well. In the case of the dog, excessive serotonin can lead to vomiting, seizures, and coma, even if not treated to death.
5 Natural Remedies That Can Help With Your Dog’s cold
The natural remedies which help to prevent your dog from cough and cold are:
Probiotics and Prebiotics
These are the healthy bacteria that are present in your dog’s guts. They help to reap health benefits. On the other hand, Prebiotic help in the development of SCFA, which helps in the growth of Probiotics in the guts.
Honey increases the immune system. Moreover, it’s effective against cold. It also clears your dog’s throat and coughs. It’s better to use honey instead of drugs. Prescribed dosages are:
- Under 20 lbs. … ½ tsp. twice daily
- 20 to 60 lbs. … 1 tsp. twice daily
- 60 lbs. or more … 2 tsp. twice daily
Note: Don’t give honey to diabetic dogs.
The presence of antioxidants in mushrooms helps boost the dog’s immune system. Mushrooms help inhibit virus replication and growth, stimulating a cellular and humoral immune response, thus reducing cold symptoms, and protecting against influenza. The best way to give the dog mushroom is in the mycelium-rich mushroom supplement.
Garlic boosts the dog’s immune system due to the presence of allicin. For a 10 lbs. dog, give 1/3 tsp. of chopped garlic mixed with the food. It is very effective. However, it is not advisable for pregnant dogs and puppies.
Homeopathic medicines are fast-acting and safe. Rumex Crispus, Aconite, Drosera, and Spongia Tosta are effective medicines for cough and cold. Use a 30C or 200C potency.