Tonsillitis in Dogs

Tonsillitis is a condition that arises when the dog’s tonsils become infected or inflamed. These tonsils are located on both sides of the pet’s throat. Although tonsillitis is fairly common in dogs, it seldom occurs in cats. The condition is generally accompanied by other disorders like bronchitis, cleft palate and dental problems. Other conditions that may occur along with tonsillitis include neoplastic tonsillar masses and peritonsillar abscesses.

Causes of Tonsillitis in Dogs

If your dog is suffering from any nasal, oral or periodontal disease he may develop tonsillitis as a secondary condition. Apart from this, if the pet has something lodged in his throat or oral cavity he may develop tonsillitis due to the infection that’s present. Since tonsillitis can hurt your pet, you must seek proper medical care and attention at the earliest.

Symptoms of Tonsillitis in Dogs

Pets suffering from tonsillitis will not want to eat their meals due to the pain and discomfort present. Some dogs will suffer from bouts of coughing and they may pass mucus in their stools. Pet owners will also find that the dog’s tonsils are red and inflamed. Pets suffering from tonsillitis look for ways to soothe their throat. Some dogs may therefore ingest foreign substances that may then end up getting lodged in their intestines.

Your pet will appear tired and lethargic. He will also refuse to play and may suffer from the symptoms of other primary illnesses.

Diagnosis of Tonsillitis in Dogs

The vet will perform a thorough physical exam to diagnose tonsillitis. The presence of all underlying diseases will be first ruled out as tonsillitis generally accompanies other inflammatory conditions. Enlargement of the tonsils, redness and inflammation are strong indicators of this condition. Once the diagnosis is confirmed, the vet will initiate treatment based on the severity of tonsillitis. Medications are often prescribed to control the inflammation and the pain but surgery may be necessary, particularly if the tonsillitis is very severe.

Treatment of Tonsillitis in Dogs

If the tonsillitis is associated with a bacterial infection, the vet will prescribe a course of antibiotics to kill the bacteria. However, if the bacterial infection is very severe, the vet may have to perform a culture test to identify the strains of bacteria that are present. The vet will also prescribe an analgesic medication that will soothe the dog’s throat. If the pet is suffering from any other condition along with tonsillitis, the vet may prescribe medications to cure those conditions as well.

These medications should be prescribed on time, according to the vet’s instructions. Follow up vet checks will also be necessary to determine the pet’s response to the treatment.

Tips for Pet Owners:

  • Keep your dog on a soft and bland food diet.
  • Make sure your pet drinks sufficient water.
  • If the dog refuses to eat or drink, you may have to hospitalize him if he becomes severely debilitated.
  • Read and follow the instructions that are listed on the medications prescribed. Also discuss the dosage and administration instructions with the vet if you’re in doubt.
  • Keep sick pets in a comfortable environment, away from both pets and children.

Although tonsillitis causes your dog a lot of discomfort, the condition can be kept in check with proper medication and care.