View Full Version : Tonsils Enlarged

21st July 2006, 10:47 AM
My dog Luke went into the vet to have ear wax removed this past Monday and the vet said his tonsils were enlarged and they saw something at the back of his throat that they biopsied. However the test results won't be back for 5-10 days. Luke was acting normally and I didn't even know his throat was swollen. So I just thought - we'll wait this out, no need to be worried. He is eating fine and is normal in his activities.

But last night I noticed that his collar was tight, so I enlarged it to make him more comfortable. That was the first I noticed anything. Then in the middle of the night he woke up hacking and I noticed that his throat had swollen again to the size of the collar and I took the collar off. Now when Luke lays wrong, he must be cutting off his air pipe and he'll start hacking.

If anyone has gone through this before, I would really like to hear your story dog and what the solution was. My mind is racing to all sorts of horrible things. I would really appreciate hearing about your experience.

I am calling the vet's office as soon as the open and tell them that Luke is getting worse.

21st July 2006, 10:57 AM
Hi Charleen,

Firstly, try not to panic. Maxx had to have a camera down his throat before and biopsies taken for swollen tonsils. They came back absolutely fine. Apparently it is just a trait in some Cavaliers that they have enlarged tonsils. The only problem we have with Maxx (and the reason I took him to the Vets) is that it makes him cough when he runs around or gets excited in any way. I thought it was his heart first of all so a diagnosis of enlarged tonsils was to me, a wonderful thing :roll:

I did ask about a Tonsillectomy but apparently dogs can haemmorhage during the op and this can be fatal :cry*ing:

From what I can remember (as it was a while ago) Maxx had a course of steroids and a course of antibiotics to reduce the swelling but he still coughs when he gets excited :(

21st July 2006, 12:52 PM
Hoping all goes well for Luke....keep us posted.

Cathy T
21st July 2006, 03:14 PM
That sounds scary Charleen. Hope everything is okay. Please know I'm thinking about you and Luke!

21st July 2006, 05:12 PM
I didnt even know dogs HAD tonsils. :roll:

Poor boy. Sounds like me when I was 12. For several years I battled tonsilitis b/c my pediatrician espoused the philosophy that tonsilectomies were outdated and that modern medicines and steroids were enough to battle off infections, blah blah blah. Finally, when I was like Maxx--couldnt breath, couldnt talk--literally had to walk around with a marker board because no one could understand what I had said my speech was so distorted--we went to a specialist who put the camera snake up my nose and down my throat. In two seconds the specialist had me signed up for surgery.

Humans can hemorrage from the surgery, too, though we often feel the risk is worth the reward. I started to come out of the anesthesia during the surgery b/c the surgery took longer than expected. Bacteria had colonized on the back of my throat (which is why I never got healthy) and the dr had to scrape the bacteria off the muscle. Apparently I even tried to get off the operating table! They had to call in extra people to hold me down while the anesthesiologist put me under again. :roll:

Long story somewhat shortened :roll: I'm fine and healthy now, and I felt perfectly wonderful immediately after surgery. Could talk better, actually! If swollen tonsils are an issue with my dog causing breathing problems and stuff, and the vet wouldnt even consider the surgery, I'd get a second opinion. It's miserable to have your throat swollen shut all your life.

22nd July 2006, 12:05 AM
First - Donna - thanks for your advice. It really helped me calm down and realize that I shouldn't panic. It was very good advice. I was awoken in the middle of the night with his breathing problems and I didn't sleep very well the rest of the night. So by morning I was exhausted and scared.

I read about glue ear and printed it out last week for the vet. When the vet looked at Luke's ears and then removed the hard masses in his ear canals, the vet was sure it was ear wax. He only started Luke on the clavamox on Monday after seeing the enlarged tonsils. I called Luke's breeder Mon. night. I have only had Luke for 2 months. He is a 3.5 yr old retired stud dog. She said that when she had Luke neutered in May, he was on clavamox then and handled it well.

It really is amazing how quickly I have grown attached to him. I can't imagine life without him. He is such a loving dog.

I was able to get Luke in at the Vet's office at 10 AM this morning. I called as soon as they opened this AM. The vet looked at Luke's throat again and he didn't think that his throat was any more enlarged than on Monday when the ear wax was removed. I told him that Luke only started having difficulty breathing last night and the vet thinks that was due to the high humidity. I explained that it was only when Luke was sleeping that the breathing difficulties would occur and then only twice last night. But that was enough to make me worry like crazy.

The Dr. assured me that he didn't think Luke's throat would get any more closed up and that we should wait for the biopsy results that will come in next week. I have another follow up appointment scheduled for 8/2 to see how his ears and throat are doing.

I guess I am OK right now. I just pray that the Dr. is right and that Luke is going to be OK.

Thanks so much for being there this morning. I really needed a place to go to call for help.

22nd July 2006, 12:30 AM

I am so glad you are feeling calmer now - we worry so much about them :l*v: . I wonder if Lukes sore ears are causing his tonsils to swell up - I know when i get ear infections I very often get enlarged tonsils too but there's no infection there :roll: I hope the Clavamox helps him and that he soon recovers, poor lad :l*v:

Moviedust, I can see what you're getting at but Maxx doesn't have an infection in his tonsils. They are just over enlarged and when he gets really excited they tend to swell up. They don't cause him problems at any other time. Believe me, if they did, I would be the first to make sure he saw a specialist.

However, I trust my Vet implicitly and when he 'operated' to find the cause of Maxx's coughing, he also called his boss and one of the other vets in to have a look too. I doubt if many other surgeries would give such excellent care to their patients.

Maxx adores my vet and gets really excited when I mention his name - he is the one who always calls specialists for advice too if he's not sure.

In fact, he even went so far as to consult a skin specialist for me about which dosage of medication to put Charlie on as he was out of the normal range for treatment.

I'm sorry you were so poorly and I believe everything you say about specialists not wanting to treat you - I had exactly the same 'treatment'
when I was a kid. When I saw an ENT specialist a few years ago in adulthood however, he informed me that my tonsils had practically rotted away and then healed themselves - yuk! He couldn't believe that I had been left in such a condition and said it was no wonder I had such bad ear problems - ah well. What I can't hear I don't know about :lol:

24th July 2006, 01:46 AM
Oh, Charleen. I just read this thread. I sure Luke has a better night and is better in the morning. It is so scary when they are sick. Please keep us posted and give him a big hug for us.

24th July 2006, 02:48 AM
Thanks Molly. I was really scared Friday morning. I was able to get in to see the vet that morning. He assured me that Luke's tonsils were not any larger than last monday.

Luke didn't have any breathing difficulties on Sat. or Sun. But I wanted to be with him the whole time on my weekend. My uncle, aunt & cousins invited me on their boat for today, so I brought Luke with me. His first boat ride. He seemed to like it. He didn't get sea sick either.

So I hope that the worst is over for his infection. Thanks so much for your kind words.

24th July 2006, 07:12 AM
charleen, what a scare. what did the vet say about his collar getting tighter? just the humidity? It sounds like he's getting good care, most of all your attention and nurturing, i bet that helps his body and spirit to fight the infection or whatever it is. i hope the biopsy is good. glad you had a nice boat ride today! :flwr:

26th July 2006, 03:36 PM
Make sure you continue to follow his tonsil/throat problem. My cavalier had laryngeal prolapse at age 3 - hence one side of her throat is permanently sutured back. It was a gradual progression tho- my vet had no idea that she was so severe. He'd never seen it happen in a dog such as mine - usually occurs in a working dog such as a border collie, etc.

She has done fine x 5 years post surgery. Has to eat small bites of food. Otherwise, she is great! Still loves her cookies!!

At my house, nobody ever just has a small medical problem :roll:


26th July 2006, 05:28 PM
Thanks for the advice Sheri. Luke goes back for a follow up visit on 8/2.

Cathy Moon
26th July 2006, 05:34 PM
I hope your sweet little boy improves before his next visit. We're keeping our fingers crossed for you! :flwr: :xfngr:

26th July 2006, 10:58 PM
Fingers and toeses pawses and noses all crossed here for the little man. Hope everything is OK Charleen :flwr: