Heat and humidity can exacerbate certain problems your dog has been managing up to now. One of these is called laryngeal paralysis, sometimes called “lar par” for short.
The larynx is the upper part of the windpipe, which opens during breathing and closes when your dog eats or drinks. If nerves controlling the larynx are damaged, the structure doesn’t function normally during either process.
Laryngeal paralysis most often affects middle-aged to senior dogs, especially large breeds. Tell-tale signs include wheezing to breath, a bark change and sometimes coughing or gagging when your dog eats or drinks. Severely affected dogs tire easily and can collapse, especially in hot, humid conditions.
If you notice any of these signs, have your dog examined as soon as possible. Don’t let lar par take your dog’s breath away.