Tonsillitis Symptoms in Dogs


When you were a child and suffered from a sore throat, the doctor probably looked at your tonsils to see if they were swollen. Though you probably haven't thought much about it, your dog also can suffer from tonsillitis. Your pup's symptoms are similar to the symptoms you may have endured if you ever had tonsillitis.

Tonsillitis Symptoms

  • Located in small pouches in the back of the throat, you dog's tonsils work to fight infection. When they're doing what their job, they enlarge from infection or inflammation, swelling out of their pouches so they're easily seen in the back of the throat. Those swollen tonsils will cause a dog to drool a lot since it's painful for him to swallow, though some dogs swallow repeatedly with tonsillitis. As well, he may cough, retch, be hesitant to eat or appear lethargic. Occasionally a dog with tonsillitis may have a fever.

Treating the Cause

  • Tonsillitis is usually secondary, caused by something else, such as dental disease, an infection elsewhere in the body, or chronic vomiting or coughing, though occasionally tonsillitis can occur on its own. The vet will look for the source of the infection for treatment, usually using antibiotics for two or three weeks to cure the tonsils and the primary condition. A tonsillectomy is rarely necessary, used only if tonsillitis is a recurring condition or the dog has a poor response to treatment.

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