Dog Barking, Dog Boarding

Dog Hoarse Bark After Boarding: Causes and Solutions


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If you’ve noticed that your dog’s bark sounds hoarse after they’ve been boarded, you may be wondering what’s causing this change. A hoarse bark in dogs could be a sign of something serious, like laryngeal paralysis or a tumor on the voice box, but it could also be nothing of concern. Early diagnosis and treatment are key for preventing long-term damage to your dog’s voice.

A hoarse bark is characterized by a rough, raspy, or strained sound. It may sound weaker or quieter than a normal bark, and your dog may have difficulty producing it.

One possible reason for your dog’s hoarse bark after boarding is that they may have contracted kennel cough while they were boarded. This disease is essentially a canine version of a cold or flu that can cause laryngitis, which in turn can hurt your dog’s vocal cords. Another possibility is that your dog may have had a touch of separation anxiety, which can cause stress and lead to hoarseness in their voice.

If your dog’s hoarse bark persists, it’s important to consult with your veterinarian to rule out any underlying health problems. Your vet may recommend a course of antibiotics or other treatments to help your dog recover their normal voice. In the meantime, make sure your dog is drinking plenty of water and getting plenty of rest to help them recover.

Causes of Hoarse Barking After Boarding

If your dog has returned from boarding with a hoarse bark, there are several possible causes. Here are some of the most common reasons why your dog might have a hoarse bark after boarding:

Excessive Barking or Vocalization Due to Stress or Anxiety

One possible cause of hoarse barking after boarding is excessive barking or vocalization due to stress or anxiety. Being away from home and in a new environment can be stressful for some dogs, and they may bark excessively as a result. This can lead to hoarseness or even laryngitis. If your dog is prone to stress or anxiety, talk to your veterinarian about ways to help them cope.

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Possible Illness or Throat Infection

Hoarseness in dogs can also be caused by illness or throat infection. Exposure to other dogs in a boarding facility can increase the risk of respiratory tract infections, including kennel cough, which can cause coughing and hoarseness. Viral or bacterial infections can also cause hoarseness. If your dog is showing other signs of illness, such as coughing or lethargy, contact your veterinarian.

Exposure to New Environmental Factors (Allergens, Dust, Etc.)

Exposure to new environmental factors, such as allergens or dust, can also cause hoarseness in dogs. If your dog is allergic to something in the boarding facility, or if they are exposed to dust or other irritants, this can cause inflammation and irritation of the respiratory tract, leading to hoarseness.

Potential Physical Trauma or Injury

Physical trauma or injury can also cause hoarseness in dogs. If your dog has been playing rough with other dogs or has been injured in some other way, they may have sustained an injury to their throat or laryngeal mucosa. Foreign objects, such as bones or toys, can also become lodged in the throat, causing hoarseness or even airway obstruction.

If your dog has returned from boarding with a hoarse bark, it’s important to monitor their symptoms and contact your veterinarian if they persist or worsen. By understanding the possible causes of hoarseness in dogs, you can help keep your furry friend healthy and happy.

When to Be Concerned: Signs and Symptoms

It can be difficult to know when to seek professional help for a hoarse bark. The following are some of the signs and symptoms to look for when deciding to call the vet.

Duration of the Hoarse Bark

If your dog’s hoarse bark lasts for more than a few days, it may be a sign of an underlying issue. While occasional hoarseness is normal, chronic hoarseness can be a sign of an underlying health problem.

Accompanying Signs of Illness or Distress (Reduced Appetite, Lethargy, Etc.)

If your dog’s hoarse bark is accompanied by other signs of illness or distress, such as reduced appetite or lethargy, it may be a sign of a more serious issue. Dogs who are in pain or discomfort may also exhibit changes in behavior or temperament.

Changes in Behavior or Temperament

If your dog’s hoarse bark is accompanied by changes in behavior or temperament, it may be a sign of an underlying issue. Dogs who are in pain or discomfort may become more irritable or aggressive, while dogs who are feeling unwell may become more lethargic or withdrawn.

Visible Signs of Injury

If your dog’s hoarse bark is accompanied by visible signs of injury, such as difficulty breathing or bad breath, it may be a sign of a more serious issue. Dogs who are experiencing difficulty breathing may be suffering from a respiratory issue, while bad breath may be a sign of dental problems or digestive issues.

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In general, if you notice any signs or symptoms that are out of the ordinary for your dog, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and consult with your veterinarian. They can help you determine the underlying cause of your dog’s hoarse bark and provide treatment options to help your furry friend feel better.

Treating a Hoarse Bark

If your dog has developed a hoarse bark after boarding, there are several steps you can take to help them recover. In this section, we will cover home remedies, veterinary care, preventative measures, and medications that can help treat hoarseness in dogs.

Home Remedies and Rest

The first step in treating a hoarse bark in your dog is to provide them with plenty of rest. Make sure they have a quiet and comfortable place to sleep and avoid excessive exercise or playtime. You can also try some home remedies to help soothe their throat, such as:

  • Encouraging them to drink plenty of water to keep their throat hydrated.
  • Adding a teaspoon of raw honey to their water bowl to help soothe their throat.
  • Feeding them a bland diet of boiled chicken and rice to avoid irritating their throat.

Veterinary Care: When to Visit the Vet and What to Expect

If your dog’s hoarse bark persists for more than a few days or is accompanied by other symptoms such as difficulty breathing or coughing, it’s time to visit the vet. Your vet may perform a physical exam, take a throat culture, or recommend X-rays to determine the underlying cause of the hoarseness.

Preventative Measures to Avoid Future Occurrences

To prevent future occurrences of hoarseness in your dog, there are several preventative measures you can take, such as:

  • Avoiding excessive barking or exercise.
  • Keeping your dog away from irritants such as smoke or dust.
  • Regularly cleaning your dog’s water bowl to avoid bacterial infections.

Medications and Their Potential Side Effects

In some cases, your vet may prescribe antibiotics or anti-inflammatories to help treat the underlying cause of your dog’s hoarseness. It’s important to follow your vet’s instructions carefully and monitor your dog for any potential side effects such as vomiting or diarrhea.

See also: When Is Dog Diarrhea an Emergency?

Overall, treating a hoarse bark in your dog requires a combination of rest, home remedies, veterinary care, and preventative measures. By following these steps, you can help your dog recover and avoid future occurrences of hoarseness.

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Preventing Hoarse Barking in Future Boarding Situations

If your dog experiences hoarse barking after boarding, there are several steps you can take to prevent it from happening in the future. Here are some tips to help you prepare your dog for boarding and reduce their stress levels:

Selection of Quality Boarding Facilities

Choosing a quality boarding facility is crucial to ensure your dog’s safety and comfort. Look for a facility that is clean, well-maintained, and staffed by experienced professionals. Consider visiting the facility in person to check the environment and meet the staff.

Preparing Your Dog for Boarding

Socialization and desensitization can help your dog feel more comfortable in new environments. Expose your dog to different people, places, and situations to help them become more confident and adaptable. Consider using positive reinforcement training techniques instead of choke chains or other aversive methods.

Communicating with the Boarding Facility About Your Dog’s Needs and Behaviors

Before boarding your dog, communicate with the facility about your dog’s needs, behaviors, and preferences. Provide detailed information about your dog’s feeding, exercise, and medical requirements. Let the staff know if your dog has any fears or anxieties, such as separation anxiety or fear of other dogs.

Tips for Reducing Stress Before, During, and After Boarding

There are several things you can do to help reduce your dog’s stress levels before, during, and after boarding. Here are some tips:

  • Pack familiar items, such as their favorite toys or blankets, to provide a sense of comfort and familiarity.
  • Consider using a harness instead of a choke chain or collar, as it is less likely to cause stress or injury.
  • Provide plenty of exercise and mental stimulation before boarding to help your dog feel tired and relaxed.
  • Consider using calming aids, such as CBD for dogs, pheromone sprays or natural supplements, to help reduce anxiety.

By following these tips, you can help your dog feel more comfortable and reduce the risk of hoarse barking after boarding. Remember to choose a quality boarding facility, prepare your dog for boarding, communicate with the staff, and provide plenty of support and comfort before, during, and after boarding.

Resources and Further Reading

If you’re interested in learning more about dog behavior and health, or if you’re looking for resources to help you find a dog behavior specialist or boarding facility, there are a number of books, articles, and online communities that you might find helpful.

These books cover a range of topics related to dog behavior and health, including communication, training, socialization, and medical issues.

Contact Information for Dog Behavior Specialists and Boarding Facilities

If you’re looking for a dog behavior specialist or boarding facility in your area, the following resources may be helpful:



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