The type of cough may give information
as to the level of the respiratory tract involved, and in some situations may
Harsh, hacking or dry coughs are associated
with the larger airways, particularly the trachea, and are often found with acute
A honking or seal-bark' cough is usually
associated with tracheal collapse, but may also be present with inhaled foreign
A soft ineffectual cough is associated
with diseases of the lower airways such as bronchopneumonia and pulmonary oedema.
The cough can be so quiet as to be indistinguishable from expiratory dyspnoea.
The occurrence of coughing in association
with exercise or when sleeping rarely assists diagnosis. Most coughing animals
will cough more during exercise, and nocturnal coughing often occurs when the
animal changes position or rises.
Rarely do animals expectorate material,
as most material is swallowed, and so recognising a productive cough (excess
airway mucus) can be difficult. During paroxysms of coughing, saliva can accumulate
in the pharynx and may be expectorated with a retching action. This material
should not be confused with airway mucus.
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