Cough = jerky exhalation movement produced by the respiratory muscles in response to irritation of the airways.
- acute cough (< 8 weeks)
- chronic cough (> 8 weeks)
What irritates the respiratory tract?
- mechanical irritation (feed particles, dust, dry air)
- allergies (histamine)
- thermal or chemical stimuli (cold, exposure to ammonia)
- Infectious diseases of viral or bacterial origin
- contaminated feed or litter (mould toxins)
What types of cough are there?
- Productive cough: Cough that produces phlegm
- Nonproductive (dry) cough: Cough without phlegm
How can respiratory diseases develop?
The body has a self-cleaning mechanism to keep the mucous membranes healthy. Due to the "mucociliary clearance", mucus is continuously formed. If the horse's mucous membranes are additionally irritated, the mucus increases due to the inflammation and its consistency changes. He becomes tougher and there is more sputum or
it stays in the airways, which can cause breathing problems. Spastic reactions are also possible.