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Asthma, also known as chronic bronchitis, is a serious pet health problem that both dogs and cats can suffer from. If your pet has asthma, the small airways of its lungs become inflamed and thicker than normal. As such, breathing becomes difficult. There are many things that can trigger asthma attacks in animals including allergens, pollutants and irritants.

How Asthma Affects Your Pet

In its most mildest form, a mild asthma attack will cause your pet to wheeze and lose its breath momentarily. However, it will be able to recover on its own. On the other hand, severe asthma attacks can make it nearly impossible for your pet to breathe at all. In these cases, the condition can be life-threatening. Additionally, in mild cases, your pet may only cough and wheeze on occasion. Animals with more severe cases though, often cough and wheeze daily. Attacks typically occur during or after strenuous exercise or excitement. However, they can occur if your pet is under extreme stress as well.

Common Symptoms of Asthma

There are several types of arthritis and many different causes. Although, it can not be cured, there are treatments that can make your pet more comfortable. Common Symptoms of Asthma in Pets: *Coughing Fits *Wheezing *Open-Mouthed Breathing *Panting *Difficulty Breathing *Gasping for Air *Breathing With Head Extended Forward *Blue or Purple Tongue. It is important to note that the signs of asthma are often mistaken for several other pet health problems. Heartworm, congestive heart failure and pneumonia all have very similar symptoms. As such, it is essential for you to take your pet to a veterinarian right away if it exhibits any of the above warning signs.

Treatments for Asthma

As of yet, there are no cures for asthma. However, there are many different treatment options you can choose among for your pet. Some of the most common medications your veterinarian may prescribe for your dog or cat include antihistamines, steroids, antibiotics, bronchodilators and/or oxygen therapy. There are also some new products for asthmatic pets that have been proven quite effective in treating feline and canine asthma. These inhaler systems are somewhat similar to systems used for human infants and small children. The system for cats is known as the AeroKat, and the one for dogs is called the AeroDawg.

Breeds Affected

Any pet can suffer from asthma; however, it seems to be more common in felines than in canines. Additionally, it is more common in middle-aged and/or obese cats than in other animals. However, the following pets are more vulnerable to asthma than others due mainly to the anatomy of their airways: Pugs, Maltese, Pekingese, Siamese, Himalayans, Shih-Tzus, Persians, American Pitbull Terriers, and Any Animal That Suffers from Allergies.

Pet Insurance

When adding a dog or cat to your family you want to make sure your pet is happy, healthy and protected. During its lifetime your pet is exposed to many illnesses and diseases and some breeds are affected by a congenital disease which is a condition existing at birth. At these moments when your pet is ill or maybe needs surgery, you want to be protected for the unexpected and high veterinarian costs.

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