Veterinary Homeopathy

Painful Teething and Sore Throat in Animals

Written by James Moore

Some tips on treating teething and sore throat in animals.

Painful and Difficult Teething

Dogs, in consequence of their more excitable temperament, suffer more than other animals from this difficulty, and especially the delicate, high-bred, or pampered. Considerable disturbance not infrequently arises when the temporary teeth become loose preparatory to their being replaced by the permanent set. Unless these loose teeth readily fall out of themselves, or are drawn, they set up much pain and irritation, and are apt to become refixed to the gum close to the permanent teeth. This happens especially with the tushes (canine teeth). Thus, not only are the teeth irregularly placed, but the gum is irritated, and accumulations of food decompose and give off a most offensive smell; the animal meanwhile suffering much, and refusing food.


Belladonna is the best remedy when the animal is feverish and suffers much pain, and when the gums are tender to the touch. Calcarea is of use when the teeth are slow in appearing, as the result of constitutional weakness.

There are cases where it is necessary at once to remove the urgent symptoms by freeing the tooth, which is done by cutting through the gum crosswise over the tooth. Also, pull out loose, or superfluous teeth.

Diseases of the Throat

Sore Throat— Inflamed Throat

In Horses

Sore throat is the name commonly applied to an inflammatory condition of the back of the mouth, which is more or less affected throughout its entire extent. It is generally associated with, and is a prominent symptom of inflammation of the larynx, although it may exist as an independent disorder. It very often attacks young horses out of condition when brought out of the farmer’s hands and put into hot, ill-ventilated stables, and when they are sent to work and placed on unusually good food. This change in their stabling, work and feeding, predisposes them to be acted upon by exposure to the weather, and sore throat is induced, or some more serious disease of the breathing organs.

In simple sore throat there is some febrile excitement, with loss of appetite, thirst, etc., followed by hard, dry cough, difficulty of swallowing, quick breathing, and swelling of the throat externally, as well as tenderness when it is handled. The glands under the jaw and below the ears are hot, tender, and swollen. Subsequently, the cough is looser, a discharge flows from the nose, and the mouth contains a frothy fluid.

In the majority of cases these symptoms gradually subside until health is regained, or symptoms of laryngitis, or of bronchitis come on. Sometimes the inflammation extends to the guttural pouches, and then, if matter should form, as is occasionally the case, there may be great obstruction to the breathing.

In Oxen and Sheep

Sore throat is most common in these animals when they graze on damp lands, during cold springs and autumns. In some seasons sore throat is exceedingly prevalent amongst cattle. The symptoms are much the same as in the horse. We find the same feverishness, difficulty in swallowing, pain and swelling of the throat, and, in addition, there is no chewing of the cud.

In Dogs

Besides arising from cold, sore throat in the dog frequently results from the local action of irritant substances swallowed. On examining the throat which can he done more readily than larger animals, the parts are seen to be red and swollen. The general symptoms are the same in the horse.


At the beginning of the attack when the animal is feverish, the pulse and breathing quickened, the membrane of the eye and nose red and injected, the throat tender, and swallowing painful, Aconite will suffice, if given early, to arrest the further course of the disease in a large number of cases.

Belladonna is best for a later stage, when the inflammation is more firmly established, and is indicated by swelling and tenderness of the glands and throat externally, great difficulty and pain in swallowing — so much so as to cause fluids to return by the nose, and by discharge of stringy saliva of the mouth. The existence of a dry, irritating cough is an additional indication for its use.

If the last medicine should make no decided impression on the disease, Mercurius should be substituted, or the two medicines may be given  in turn, in the same doses, every two or three hours according to the urgency of the symptoms. This medicine is indicated by somewhat the same symptoms as Belladonna.


James Moore M.E.C.V.S. was a member of the Royal Agricultural Society of England and is the author of Horses Ill and Well: Homeopathic Treatment of Diseases and Injuries and Hints on Feeding, Grooming, Conditioning, Nursing, Horse-buying (1863).

About the author

James Moore

James Moore M.E.C.V.S. was a member of the Royal Agricultural Society of England and is the author of Horses Ill and Well: Homeopathic Treatment of Diseases and Injuries and Hints on Feeding, Grooming, Conditioning, Nursing, Horse-buying (1863).

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