Please help!

Leslief2309

New member
May 25, 2024
2
1
Country
United States
Bulldog(s) Names
Lulu
Hi everyone!

I am a first time English Bulldog owner and looking for guidance...

My Lulu just turned 1 this past week. In December she had a few episodes where she would get sick and throw up. It was always early morning and I felt due to empty stomach. The issue was every time she would throw up, it would affect her breathing and she would pass out. She would come to very quickly. I decided to switch to a vet who had more experience with bulldogs. Vet said she was not getting enough air due to her nares. He then brought up her palate and that she would eventually need surgery to reduce but would like to hold off as long as possible due to regrowth because of her age...that waiting until 2 yrs old would be best. A x-ray was also done to check heart and airway. He said her heart looked good but she does have a narrow trachea. She had nares surgery 2 weeks later and it made a huge difference. No more snoring, she slept better, and no more episodes of passing out.

3 weeks ago she didn't seem like herself. She just wanted to lay around and started what sounded like her trying to clear her throat. She also had a runny nose. The pollen here was horrible at the time so I thought maybe it was her allergies. The next morning she was asleep on the couch and when she woke up she immediately almost passed out and urinated on herself. I took her the emergency vet to get checked out. Vet said heart and lungs sounded good..could not find cause for concern. She was normal the rest of the day but started having bad diarrhea on Monday. I followed up with our regular vet on the following Tuesday,5/7, which is when she was diagnosed with aspirational pneumonia and bacterial colitis. I was told the colitis was due to the stress caused by the pneumonia. She was prescribed antibiotics for both. During the visit with her regular vet, we talked about her now needing palate surgery but of course could not be performed until pneumonia was cleared up. On 5/16 she was playing and got really excited. Her breathing got really heavy like she wasn't getting enough air and she collapsed but did not pass out. This happened 3 more times and I attributed it to her palate. I called the vet to schedule a recheck for the pneumonia so that we could proceed with palate surgery. During the vet visit on 5/20, x-rays were done to check her heart and her lungs. Her lungs were clear but there was he thought her heart looked a little enlarged. I agreed to have then sent to a radiologist to determine if an echo needed to be done. Vet called next morning to say radiologist said her heart looks good and no need for echo. I asked about scheduling the palate surgery but vet sa.id no because wanted to wait due to age and that I should try to keep her as calm as possible to keep her from having episodes. I hung up feeling so confused. Since the vet visit she has had an episode any time she does anything that affects her breathing. I try to keep her calm as much as possible but even her getting excited to me coming home causes it to happen. I am frustrated because there is only so much I can control. I cry everyday because it breaks my heart for her. She no longer can play with her toys, she can't play with my other dog, she can't play with my son...she cannot be normal dog. I cringe anytime she moves quickly. I now carry her up our stairs for fear it will happen and she will fall backwards down the stairs. She's started snoring again and when I don't hear her snoring throughout the night I check to make sure she is still breathing.
I am looking for another vet to get a second opinion. I cannot accept that this is her reality and we just have to wait until she is 2.

Thanks for taking the time to read...I know it's a lot. Is there anything else other than getting a second opinion, I should be doing?
 
Hello and Welcome

If her palate needs to be done, I would do it. No need having her stretch another year. Also some dogs palates can regrow but definitely not guarantee it will either. That being said, could also be her narrow trachea.

Hang on @oscarmayer is more knowledgable on this issue. Pretty sure he’ll answer you n others with this experience.
 
If this pup has a hypoplastic trachea then the soft palate surgery can only do but so much. If it’s been determined that the palate surgery will absolutely improve quality of life then DO NOT delay it. Pup has already survived one round of pneumonia likely caused by the palate and surviving another is an unnecessary risk.
If surgery is done, and the palate regrows and pup needs it again, then do it again.
If your Vet continues to balk at doing the surgery, it’s time to find another vet…or simply insist on it.
Please keep us posted on what you decide to do.
 
If this pup has a hypoplastic trachea then the soft palate surgery can only do but so much. If it’s been determined that the palate surgery will absolutely improve quality of life then DO NOT delay it. Pup has already survived one round of pneumonia likely caused by the palate and surviving another is an unnecessary risk.
If surgery is done, and the palate regrows and pup needs it again, then do it again.
If your Vet continues to balk at doing the surgery, it’s time to find another vet…or simply insist on it.
Please keep us posted on what you decide to do.
Thank you!
 
Totally agree with you finding a new vet for second opinion… where are you located maybe a member is nearby and we can provide a recommendation
 
My boy Fury had the same issues… vomiting in the morning - he was phlegmy and trying to cough it out but would often choke on it to the point of not being able to breathe unless we were there to physically remove it by making him vomit (Lemon juice or taking our hand inside to pull it out)

Vets just thought bronchitis or infections so would give us antibiotics and send us on the way but no improvement.

It gradually was happening more recently - almost daily - went to a specialist who could hear he needed breathing BOAS surgery. And we could see if that fixes it.

It did!!!

He has not had the issue of throwing up or coughing up phlegm. Breathes much better as well and just seems overall more comfortable.

We were quoted $1500-2000 and it ended up being 2K total for soft palate removal, widening nostrils and removing tonsils and part of his larynx. With antibiotics.

Worth every cent and now have peace of mind since we were not able to leave him alone unsupervised.

Do you have any update???
 
Also - like you I waited so long (he was 2.5) because I didn’t want it to “grow” back like you hear but I totally wish I did it sooner at 1-1.5 years because it really did save his life.

He would often get diagnosed with bronchitis or pneumonia and we did X-rays nonstop. Cuz the problem was never fixed.

We spent more money over time just taking him back to the doctors and worrying about him throwing up and avoiding the palate because of unknown (possibly growing back)… having him go limp on us for the 3-4th time after throwing up and losing breathing + being so weak afterwards and taking to urgent care again and again made me get it done ASAP.

His quality of life has improved. He snores a bit still when he has a lot of playtime but not like before. We also carried them up stairs to prevent the weight on their legs just for prevention. Thankfully we were able to move without stairs for when they are getting older.

I pray your pup is able to feel better soon and you make the best decision for you!!!
 

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