Click here to visit the most complete Maltese site on the WWW

Archived Message

Drinking and Choking

by Nancie

Our little boy, Rocky, always drinks his water very fast and then he starts to choke and he wheezes. His little body shakes and he gets frightened and comes over to us to be reassured that he's alright. Is this a common problem? Our vet really didn't give us a definative answer.


Please bear in mind when reading topics pertaining to health issues, that many of these questions were answered by helpful Maltese owners with no formal education in veterinarian medicine. When in doubt seek a professionals advise.

Nancie, Zsa Zsa drinks her water fast, too, and chokes quite a bit. I haven't noticed her shaking after drinking water and choking, but definitely when she is in a strange situation (or what she thinks is strange, it's actually new to her!) she shakes all over. I saw another Maltese that did this, too. Hope this helps!
-Pamela and Zsa Zsa

Buffy had a problem with this. I think she was trying to breath while she drank and accidently got her nose in the bowl. I switched to drinking bottles and she is o.k. now. Might try the bottles. They are much neater also.
-Marsha A.

Lucy, too, often does this. I think she drinks too fast sometimes or gets air along with water. I asked my vet about it and she said Luce looks fine to her and that if this problem got worse, happened with other than water, etc., we might want to do some tests. So far, water is the only culprit and it isn't 100% of the time. Luce has been doing this since she was just a baby puppy, and is in fine health, so I just talk her through it until she stops and then I give her hugs and kisses. Sometimes I wonder if she's after those hugs!!
-cathy brown

I have had Maltese for more than 15 years. The two I have now both seem to choke after drinking. The female (Amy) chokes and coughs, but it does not seem to affect her. The male (Spike) usually coughs each drink up onto the floor. the vet has not been of any help. Intersting to read of your similar problems.
-geoff sloman

Our 8 month old male, Zeus, doesn't have any problem. But our female, Hera, tries to drink too much water too fast. Often, she coughs up some of the water soon after. Occassionaly, she develops similar sounding "fits" that others have mentioned here. She used to appear scared during the fits, but now they don't seem to bother her so much; they just worry us. It's kind of like a hiccup, cough, snort, and gag sort of combination which may last for five minutes. She seems to breath easier through her mouth during these spells rather than through her nose. I was worried about it being something severe, like a physical disformity or collapsing trachea. But it sounds like a fairly common thing for these little ones to get a nose full of water. I hope that's all it is and that she learns to pace herself when drinking.
-Carlton Albert

Copyright 1996, 1997© Maltese Only All rights reserved