Our 4-year old Aussie-doodle frequently will have a coughing attack in which she almost sounds like she's hacking up a hairball; she'll cough hard 3-5 times, then have a final hack and be done... until the next coughing fit, which usually happens several times an hour.
As a puppy, we noticed when we'd love pat her with any force at all it would cause her to start hacking. Not sure if that was indicative of an underlying condition.
Vet did a heartworm test (negative), and gave Benadryl for allergies (no effect).
Vet gave prednisone (steroid) & antibiotics for kennel cough, which resolved the cough for a few weeks, but then she became sick and stopped eating. (We suspect it was the prednisone that stopped the cough, since later, another vet prescribed antibiotics again and it did not take the cough away).
Returned to vet & he prescribed probiotics, which restored her appetite, but then shortly after she started coughing again.
Vet prescribed prednisone again which took the cough away completely; however, after the prescription ran out, the cough returned after 2 months.
We have cleaned our air ducts and filters in our heater.
After the last negative heart worm test, the vet said he knew of no other condition that could cause her cough than distemper, but she does not have clear discharge or leaky eyes, nor is she lethargic. (In fact, she does not cough while on runs).
She is energetic, loves to run, has an appetite, and poops normally.
We've tried: honey, licorice root, slippery elm, lemon, turmeric, probiotics, coconut oil and essential oils to reduce inflammation. I have also ceased using a harness and have a leash that connects to her snout so she does not have any pressure on her throat. Still no reprieve.
Does anybody know what could be going on with our dog? We'd love to get some sleep!