The Most Dog Friendly Community Online
Join Dog Forum to Discuss Breeds, Training, Food and More

Border terrier with diabetes, chf and pulmonary firbrosis


New Member
Reaction score

Join our free community today.

Connect with other like-minded dog lovers!

Login or Register
[SIZE=10.5pt]Hallo, my name is Yvonne and I have just joined the forum as I'm posting about my Border Terrier, Betsy, who is on a lot of medication for a lot of problems! I think she's about 15 but I bought her as ex-rescue about 9 years ago and they may have got her approximate age wrong.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=10.5pt]I took her to the vet a year ago as she was very lethargic, with a bad cough. She was diagnosed with a compressed trachea and crackly lungs, and was put on furosemide and steroids, which seemed to improve things until April when she was diagnosed with diabetes. She has settled quite well on caninsulin but obviously had to come off the steroids due to her diabetic condition. She was given codeine instead.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=10.5pt]Sometime during the summer she was also diagnosed with congestive heart failure, ie the heart was thickened on the inside thus reducing the amount of blood pumping through. She was then put on Benzapet.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=10.5pt]The cough just gets worse and recently she was put on another water tablet as well as the Furosomide, this time Tempura. The crackling in her lungs is not improving and she has been put on a broncodilator tablet, Corvental-D.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=10.5pt]So she is now on Furosemide, Tempura, Benazapet, Codeine, Corvental-D and caninsulin. Despite her bowl containing enough tablets to make her rattle, and having a constant cough, she still seems really happy in herself and her breathing is also ok. The vet has increased the Corvental-D dosage but beyond that there doesn't seem to be anything else which can be done other than steroids which can only be used as a last resort when her breathing starts getting worse.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=10.5pt]My reason for posting is that I hope there is someone out there who may have been through something similar who could offer some advice about anything else they have used to suppress the cough. I absolutely trust both vets who see Betsy every week, but there may be some homeopathic medication or something which someone has tried which helps a cough.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=10.5pt]She has brought nothing but joy and delight to my life since I took her in. I would do anything to help my wee dog in the time I have left with her.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=10.5pt]Thanks in advance for any help and sorry for the long post.[/SIZE]

Yvonne, the thought of putting her too sleep must have crossed your mind yes? Have the vets said anythink about it? Reading what you posted I would have made my decision.... But it's only a post and I'm not there...kind regards.
Thank you Lurcherman. Yes, it has occurred to both the vet and me, but we don't think she's quite there yet. In herself she seems so happy still, it's just this darned cough which the vet says will be making her uncomfortable but not in pain. As soon as it turns into pain or her breathing becomes laboured I don't think there will be any option but to say bye-bye in the kindest manner.

Thank you so much for responding.

Can she have a little honey to ease her cough or would that just cause bigger problems with the diabetes?
Thanks JoanneF, that is a good idea, and I'll check with the vet about the diabetes first. I am back with the vet later this week again. I sometimes think I should just set up a camp bed there!

Keep us updated,, I lost my brindle in august so I know what your going through, we all do..
Thanks again, and I will post an update after this week's visit to the vet.

I'm so sorry to hear you lost your brindle...we lost our brindle 3 years ago in February and there is still a big lurcher shaped hole in our lives. He was also ex-rescue but had a wonderful life until the last few days.

Hey ho, don't they just break your heart...

That they do.. Just before I read that post I'd just watched a video of rio my brindle and you know what a few tears came,,, geez I'm a big softy really hehe.
Is the cough due to congestion? If so ask your vet if some physiotherapy might help her?

You are an amazing owner. I hope you manage to keep her comfortable for a little longer.
Hi Gypsymum2, I'm not sure what is causing it. There is crackling in the lungs which the water tablets haven't cured, and some fibrosis in the lungs. I will definitely ask the vet about physio, that hadn't occurred to me.

Many thanks for the suggestion :)

Lurcherman, being a big softy when missing a dog is a Good Thing :)

You need to look for an ACPAT registered physiotherapist. Some vets are aware of those in their area and some are not.
I can't believe it is over a month since I posted. I've been concerned with our elderly cat recently who hasn't been eating and I ended up at the vet the other day with both dog and cat! Fortunately I am such a regular visitor there they fitted both animals in for the same appointment.

Honey is definitely out due to the diabetes and the vet didn't seem to think physio would help...however, Betsy has been doing brilliantly for the last couple of weeks, her cough has almost disappeared and she is trotting around like a puppy. The only problem at the moment is that she appears to have become pretty much incontinent, but with washable waterproof covers for the sofa and a couple of mops and buckets around we can cope with that. So for the moment she seems happy, though so unimpressed with the "doggy diapers" that I discontinued them immediately!

Thanks so much for your help and reassurance. I will continue to enjoy Betsy and her company for a little while longer I hope. I think I'll know when she isn't happy any more, but may have to come back with more questions at some point.

Thanks again
If the incontinence is due to the decline in female hormones, which is common in older bitches, the vet may be able to help with some medication. Of course, with all her other meds she may not be able to take it but worth checking.
Thanks gypsymum, yes the vet said there were meds for this situation, but betsy is on so many meds it would be best if we could manage the incontinence without upsetting the balance. We are happy to continue mopping up!

Many thanks


Welcome to Dog Forum!

Join our vibrant online community dedicated to all things canine. Whether you're a seasoned owner or new to the world of dogs, our forum is your go-to hub for sharing stories, seeking advice, and connecting with fellow dog lovers. From training tips to health concerns, we cover it all. Register now and unleash the full potential of your dog-loving experience!

Login or Register