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Question
Hi! I have a 3 week old puppy that I have became increasingly concerned about. She is a fiest/springer spaniel mix, and the runt of the litter. She constantly sounds congested and almost always has small amounts of milk coming out of her nose. During nursing and soon thereafter, the rattling and snoring type sounds are the worst, although she has some sounds all the time. I am willing to seek vet care, however, she is still feeding from Mom every couple hours, and I'm afraid to attempt a bottle for fear of aspiration. She is obviously getting adequate nutrition since she is alive and just as active as her litter mates. They are starting to eat a little of Mom's canned puppy food, and she seems to be handling that ok. Any ideas what could cause this? Any info or advice you can provide will be greatly appreciated! Thanks so much for the wonderful service you provide!

Answer
Hi,
Usually this happens to too greedy puppies suckling vigorously and the fact that they cannot accommodate the quantity of milk already in mouth,small amounts of milk may come out through the nostrils.  Aspiration is also possible in such instances.The chances of little bit of aspiration cannot be ruled out from the rattling sounds seen after nursing.Other possibilities of any anatomical variations (could be congenital),like cleft palate or oronasal fistula needs to be ruled out by your vet.If you intend to bottle feed the pup,use nipple with very small hole so that only little amounts of milk is received while suckling.

regards

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Dr S Bindu Anand

Expertise

Large and Small Animal Medicine and Surgery, Farm Management,Preventive medicine http://binduanand.webs.com/

Experience

A Senior Veterinary Surgeon with more than 25 years’ experience in the field of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry. Mixed animal Practice that will utilize my skills in medicine and surgery, public health, client relations, and developing relationships within the community, such as humane society

Organizations
Veterinary Consultant with Department of Animal Resources,Ministry of Environment,State of Qatar (Present). Animal Husbandry Department, Government of Kerala, India. Oakland's Park, Gloucestershire, United Kingdom. Severnside Veterinary Center, Gloucestershire, United Kingdom. Saud Bahwan Group, Sultanate of Oman. Trivandrum Regional Co-operative Milk Producers Union,Kerala,India.

Education/Credentials
BVSc & AH (Bachelor of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry) 1990. College of Veterinary & Animal Sciences, Mannuthy, Thrissur, Kerala, India under Kerala Agricultural University. Certificates Of Accomplishments- Equine Nutrition- University of Edinburgh Principles of Public Health-University of California, Irvine. AIDS- Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia. General Environmental Health – EPHOC-Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine and the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health. Food Protection-EPHOC-Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine and the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health. Zoonoses:University of Minnesota-School of Public Health online. Food Safety:University of Minnesota-School of Public Health online. Occupational Safety and Health-EPHOC-Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine and the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health. Rabies Educator Certified -Global Alliance for Rabies Control. Animal Handler & Vaccinator Educator Certified -Global Alliance for Rabies Control. Wildlife Conservation-United for Wildlife

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