Dogs with Collapsing Trachea

The Fight to Breathe

All of these dogs below have been affected and suffered from Collapsing Trachea.

If anyone wants to share their story,
please send it to

Dogs with Collapsing Trachea need surgery to correct the problem. The cost of this surgery is extremely high. You can help by making a donation to our fund so that we might be able to help other dogs.

YTNR cannot accept donations for a specific dog, but your donation to the YTNR Collapsing Trachea Fund will help replenish the funds that will be used for these and future dogs coming to us for help. The numbers are high.

If anyone wants to send a donation to help,
please send it to Pay Pal here or mail a check to:

Yorkshire Terrier National Rescue, Inc.
Collapsing Trachea
c/o Mary Elizabeth Dugmore
1065 Lewis Road
Chapmansboro, TN 37035


In Memory of Odie


My sweet little boy, Odie, a YorkiePoo, passed away on October 2, 2012, at only 8 yo, due to Trachea Collapse Disease. There is not a day that goes by that I don't thank God that I had him in my life even if it was only for a short 8 years. His passing could have been avoided; or at the very least delayed for years had I received the right medical advice.




While getting his yearly teeth cleaning 3 years ago, the vet I was using contacted me to tell me that he found a tumor in the back of Odie's throat that had to come out. It turned out to be benign but that's when I was told he had trachea collapse disease. He NEVER coughed, or gagged, or made any of those throat noises UNTIL after that surgery. The only advice the vet/surgeon could give/tell me is that there was NO treatment for Trachea Collapse Disease, and that in time I would just have to put him he put it. He said there were different surgeries for it but they were EXTREMELY expensive and there was only a 50% chance of survival. I asked him for the name of surgeons in the State of NJ that I could contact right away....but he said he didnt know of any surgeons who would take this on. Although I could not afford it, I would have sold my soul to save that little boy.

But what makes me so mad is that the vet NEVER never mentioned any of the positive aspects that I should have been doing for him; like giving him a cough supressant; keeping him in a calm environment; avoiding barking or getting excited; keeping his weight down; nothing, he offered nothing at all.

Odie was already 5 years old when he was first diagnosed. He loved running around and playing with the other dogs in the dog park. He barked ALOT too, and he had a very healthy appetite. The cough got worse, and worse. I brought him to another vet who again did not offer ANYTHING until it was too late.

I woke up one morning and Odie collapsed in front of me. Could barely breathe. Got him to the vet. He gave him a shot of something to assist in the breathing. Then sent me home with a cough suppressant, and a steroid, and said it won't be long now. I went home and started making calls like crazy trying to find a surgeon who would operate on him; not that I could afford it but I would have sold my sould to keep that dog alive. Three days went by and although Odie was still giving kisses, he could barely walk and when he did walk he was yelping and screeching in pain. I knew I had to put him down but I still can't believe he's gone. I loved that little boy from 8 weeks old to 8 years old and I will miss him forever !



If it should be that I grow weak And pain should keep me from my sleep, Then you must do what must be done, For this last battle cannot be won.

You will be sad, I understand. Don't let your grief then stay your hand. For this day, more than all the rest, Your love for me must stand the test.

We've had so many happy years. What is to come can hold no fears. You'd not want me to suffer so; The time has come -- please let me go.

Take me where my need they'll tend, And please stay with me till the end. Hold me firm and speak to me, Until my eyes no longer see.

I know in time that you will see The kindness that you did for me. Although my tail its last has waved, From pain and suffering I've been saved.

Please do not grieve -- it must be you Who had this painful thing to do. We've been so close, we two, these years; Don't let your heart hold back its tears.


In Memory of Sammy


Our beloved 13 year old maltipoo Sammy passed away on July 26, 2009 from complications of a collapsed trachea. I want to share our tragedy with you because his death could have been avoided if we had taken his condition more seriously.

His first major attack occurred on June 7th of this year. We took him to a doggie park on a hot and humid evening close to our home and the sheer joy and excitement of being around the other dogs caused him to begin honking and we could tell he was in great distress. He had always made funny little noises when he got excited or over exercised and as long as I held him that night he was managing ok so we waited until Monday morning to take him to our vet. When I arrived they took his temperature (it was 105), put him in a cool bath and put him in the oxygen cage with a sedative. After reviewing his x-rays we were told that he had a severe collapsed trachea and was given a bronchodilator, cough pills with codeine and a tranquilizer. Our sweet little boy responded beautifully to the medication and for a month and a half was just thriving as long as we kept him in his little bubble at home.

Our fatal mistake occurred on July 25th when we took him to our friend’s lake house about 2 hours from our home. Sammy was great the entire day, took a ride on the boat, lounged with me in the water lake chair and was as happy as can be. Around 10:00 that night several neighbors came over with their big dogs. Sammy wanted to be right in the thick of things so I put him down for a bit to hang with the big boy’s. We were out on the screened porch and once again the heat and excitement got to him and by 11:30 pm we knew he was in trouble. We had no cell phone service and were about two hours away from our emergency animal hospital and had to drive about 20 minutes away from the cabin in order to get phone service. From the moment we got into the car Sammy’s condition worsened. We found an animal hospital about 45 minute’s away but he was in such bad shape by the time we arrived we were frantic. I will never forget the look of panic in his little black eyes or the horrible sounds that were coming from his little body on that excruciating ride to the animal hospital. The veterinarian that was on call had just graduated from vet school in May, 2009 and was using an open medical book to treat our baby. His temperature was 109 and the oxygen didn’t seem to be helping. She administered several medications and as a last resort performed an emergency tracheotomy, of which he did not survive. The vet said he was trying to wag his little tail until the bitter end.

My husband and I are consumed with guilt and grief over the loss of our sweet little Sammy. If you have a dog that has been diagnosed with a collapsed trachea and is responding to medication you must keep them in a safe environment free of stress and excitement. No one can predict the future but I am convinced that we could have had him with us several more years if we had been more careful. If your dog has this terrible condition, love them, hug them and keep them safe. Don’t be lulled into a false sense of security like we were just because they are doing well. God bless and best of luck with your precious pet. Mary Beth


In Memory of Tumbleweed


On Sept. 27, 2007 my husband and I adopted the world's sweetest Yorkie, Tumbleweed. We located him through a rescue group and he was 14 years old at the time. His advanced age didn't matter to us, he needed a safe, loving home to retire. We adored and spoiled him. Tumbleweed had a pampered life. But ironically he also had a tough year. Tumbleweed had 3 surgeries in 2008, coming back stronger each time. The first surgery was to remove a grapefruit size tumor from his liver, the second surgery was to remove bladder stones and the third was a hernia repair. The little fellow had such a will to live. We were advised early in Tumbleweed's care that he had a collapsing trachea, however neither my husband nor I realized the severity of the problem. He was doing well, only "honking" when he became excited. Then just in a matter of a few days the condition became gravely worse. He was laboring to breathe, which just broke our hearts. Surgery wasn't an option for Tumbleweed due to his advanced age and medical history. Our little boy was dying.

Our beloved Tumbleweed passed on August 17, 2008 after a courageous fight with a severely collapsed trachea. Even on the day he was quickly and humanely relieved of his discomfort he didn't want to leave us. Nor did we want to be without him. We did everything we could for him, but his wise age of 15 years had finally caught up with him.

We were so blessed to care for Tumbleweed the last year of his life. He brought so much joy into our family. We will forever carry him in our hearts.

Mommy and Daddy will forever love you, Tumbleweed!!!




I have a 3 year old Male yorkie named Baillie. He was diagnosed yesterday with a collapsing trachea. I cannot afford all the surgery but can afford some of it. He is the love of my life. Donations are being accepted at here. please put Baillie’s name in the comments section. Or you can send a check to:
c/o Helen Hendricks
2390 Scotts Hill Loop Rd
Wilmington, North Carolina 28411

Thank you for helping Baillie.

We received donation for Baillie’s medical from Janice Carnahan $20, Michael Arndt $5.00, Judith Geroni $50.00, Marilyn Martin $20.00, Melanie Riezner $20. Thanks so much!


Update 3/30/2008:

Greetings to you,
Thank you for your prayers, kind words and wonderful.

Madison has his bath; coughed only slightly but really enjoyed having his hair dried. Madison is still medicated but not sedated, unless needed. I set him down on outside so, he could take care of his potty business and he was very happy, wanted to walk but I didn’t allow too much walking. He came in and was trying to engage me, he was asking for his back rubs (spoiled rotten brat) and then I got all kinds of yorkie kisses. He looked so much happier, I am happy and wanted to share this. I am aware his condition is still guarded but I will take every little sign of improvement and be happy to have him with me in pain-free life.

Lot of folks praying for our little boy; his cough is lessen; he wants to be more active. That is awesome news to me. He is eating his meds with small amount of steak (LOL my sirloin steak dinner!!)


Madison's Story

I am overwhelmed emotionally devastated by Madison's stent breakage outcome. I was very upset that I had not been able to get complete information. Madison is happier on and off; which only furthers my confusion. He is eeating and there are times, when he wants to play and sit in the sunshine. I am told this prognosis is guarded and that is it hopeless and cruel to even attempt useless invasive procedures that will not really fix the broken stent problem.

He looks like a Macy's parade balloon but the vets assure me, it looks worst then it is.

After consulting with Dr. Kradwinkle of UT, the vets at NC State etc., I have decided NOT to attempt any further surgery. It is not easy decision and even as I type this is still causes me anxiety. I adore Madison and my daughter came yesterday morning to take me to UT but I have to be realistic, I am not thinking of Madison's best interest. I can subject to the any more invasive procedures. His stent is broken but is still better (grade 2 or 3 )then he was before the stent grade 4. God willing, his pneumonia is clear up; cough is let up and the hole in his trachea will close. I am going to love and spoil him as long as God allows me to have him with me.

3:40 am .. I just woke .. Madison is not better, He is bigger then he was last night. I pray God give me the courage to let my sweet little angel leave this world.

Madison is coughing and ook bigger, his rice crispy skin looks pinkish. I wish I could run to the NC and just have them sew the hole but it is will cost more money then I have now and I am trying to be realistic. I have sick to my stomach all night not slept more then 45mins.



I just wanted to tell our Yorkie's story. His name was Jingles, and he just died from a collapsed trachea on February 9,2008. He would have been 6 years old on April 24th.

Last year we took Jingles to the vet because he was wheezing. Every time he would run around and get excited he'd be out of breath. Jingles would also vomit foam once in a while. X-rays were taken and he was diagnosed with a collapsed trachea. The vet gave us Temparil pills and told us to give them to him if he started wheezing. The pills worked for over a year. On Feb. 9. Jingles sneezed twice, and then started wheezing. I gave him his pill, but 45 minutes later he wasn't better so we took him to the vet. He gave him a bronchodilator shot and some pills for the next week. A few hours later Jingles still wasn't better, so we took him back to the vet. This time they gave him oxygen and again told us not to get him excited. Our vet never thought Jingles wouldn't make it. One hour later Jingles died.

My husband and I are devestated. Jingles came into our lives when he was 8 months old. He was such a loving, smart dog and we miss him so much. Dying from a collapsed trachea is a horrible death and if the vet said he was going to die we would have had him put to sleep so he could have gone peacefully.

Mary Anne Dillon, Brooklyn, New York


In Memory of Heather

Heather was put to sleep in May of 2007. She was 11 3/4 years old and suffered from collapsing trachea for the second part of her life. I have not posted in years here but I wanted to briefly share my pain and discuss how the surgery gave us 3 beautiful years with Heather.

When she was eight , after two serious bouts with trachea collapse Heather had the ring surgery at AMC in NYC. We tried for a month to make her comfortable prior to the surgery but nothing worked. Not cough medicine or sedatives, each breath was so labored I dont know how she lived almost a month in that condition. The surgery was very successful and helped her breath almost normally for the rest of her life. Each day we were so thankful to have her.

About six months before she passed I noticed her chest was noticably going in and out with each breath. It was not a trachea issue as I knew it but the vet but her on a medicing and it was ok until labor day of 2007. In the middle of the night she couldnt stop panting. I tried sedatives and nothing helped. Took her to the emergency room friday night and waited for senior staff to return that sunday.

Ultimately they diagnosed her with end stage COPD and told me she probably wouldnt leave the hospital. Well she was so strong and fought to come home that wednesday. They got her to a manageable state but she couldnt function at home. She couldnt walk or stand for more then a few seconds and was constantly panting. The panting could have been from the steroids they were giving her but that was unlikely. I really hadnt slept more than a few hours over the whole week.

We made the decision to put her to sleep in our house which turned out to be a nightmare. We were so happy she got out of the AMC but the vet who came to our house used a tranquilizer first and she had an adverse reaction to that. SHe was yelling and terrified before and that picture is vividly with us today. I continue to be in extraordinary pain from this loss. Heather was the best friend i have ever had. A whole new topic will discuss that last day but I do want to say the surgery was invaluable to us and I am so grateful we had those three beautiful three years with her. COPD came on out of nowhere and was not what I expected. This poor girl could not stop panting , i believe her body was working so hard to keep her alive.

I miss you my love


In Memory of Patches

This page is dedicated to Patches
who lost her brave battle
with Collapsing Trachea in
October of 2004.


In Memory of Lucy


Hi, I am Lucy. I am the sweet, red headed little girl with the “glowing” eyes. I had cataracts on both eyes and they tend to reflect a lot of light. A little over 3 years ago I was wondering the streets in the San Antonio area. I was used as a breeder dog and then cast out when no longer wanted. I was left at the dog pound until a yorkie rescue group took me in and put me up for adoption under the name of Autumn. My mommy first saw me on petfinder and fell in love with me. She drove all the way from El Paso, TX to San Antonio, TX to adopt me. Their van broke down on the way here but my foster mommy and family let them spend the night. My new mommy and her family then drove me all the way back to El Paso to my new forever home. I slept on my new mommies lap all the way through and was just as happy as can be.

You can see my little “brother” Tommy on the right. He was a wonderful friend to me. I used to clean his little face everyday and used him how to use the doggie door so he would not mess the house. When mommy gave us baths I would block the doggie door so he wouldn’t go roll in the dirt and get all dirty again. My mommy was so proud of me! She loved me very much and took me in with all these health problems. I was 9 years old when she adopted me and she loved me and took me everywhere with her. I was a pampered doggie who lived indoors and got to sleep on mommy’s bed on special occasions (mostly when daddy worked nights).

I had a bad heart, hypothyroidism, cataracts, and then my trachea collapsed. I was 12 years old when I died. Because of my heart problems I could not undergo anymore surgery. I had a couple of surgeries to remove tumors on my belly, but my little ticker started not to tick right anymore so the vet said no more surgeries. I couldn’t even get my teeth cleaned anymore, but my mommy loved me anyways.

In March of 2007 I had to say goodbye to mommy and everybody else because of my trachea problems I could not breathe well anymore. My mommy cried and cried her eyes out. She told everybody I was the most loyal dog she ever had. I was loyal and smart and loved her as if she raised me from a pup.

Now my “baby brother” Tommy has been diagnosed with collapsing trachea and you know mommy is so devastated. I love Tommy, but I don’t want him in heaven yet. I want him to stay there and take care of mommy, she needs him. I wish I could have stayed longer, but God needed me more so I took my last breath and licked my mommy’s tears away.

My mommy didn’t know about this problem with tracheas and how it affects us toy breeds until now. It was too late for me, but not too late for Tommy or other yorkies out there.

I look down from heaven and smile at my mommy. Her and Tommy visit my grave in the backyard and tell me how much they miss me and how they will never forget me.

My mommy can truly say I LOVE LUCY!!! Then and forever……



In Memory of Liza

This is Liza's story. I wrote it this morning because if I remember the good things, it doesn't hurt so much.

Liza came to me when she was six months old. She was bred to be a champion show dog, and she was beautiful. But she didn't want to be a show dog. She could stack, and she could walk, and she could show attitude when her handler signaled her, but she wasn't having any fun when she did it. So one day I got a call from her breeder and she asked me if I wanted a playmate for my other dog. I said sure. I'd known the breeder for about two years, and over that time she'd told me several times that if she had a dog she wanted placed as a pet, she'd give me a call. I never thought it would happen, though.

It was a three hour drive up to the breeder's house. I got there in the early afternoon and Terri brought out this adorable little puppy. We had lunch, and I spent several hours with Liza before Terri decided it was a match. I took her home that night and she met her new family. That was over 10 years ago. Liza grew into a sweet natured dog who thought the whole world was her best friend. She was the welcoming committee to our house and yard. She flirted shamelessly and charmed everyone.

She had show dog looks, but she really wanted to be an explorer. I tried for a year to keep her groomed, with the long show coat I thought was her birthright. Eventually I gave her a puppy cut and let her crawl through the bushes as much as she wanted. She was never happier than when she was on the trail of the wily mouse or sniffing out where the stray cat had wandered through our back yard. I kept her hair short, except for her top knot.

With her new big sister, she learned how hard it is to properly raise and train a human. She never shirked, though. She stuck with it and eventually I caught on and learned all the tricks she wanted me to learn. I learned to throw a ball while she was eating, so she'd be able to take a break and chase it. I learned to leave my towel on the floor outside the shower so she could sit guard for me until I got out. I learned to share my pillows and blankets, and I learned that when the alarm clock goes off, it really is time to get up. That was the hardest lesson for me to learn, but she was patient. First, she'd come give me kisses. If that didn't work she'd climb on my chest and start this little huffing woof. If that didn't take care of it, there was always standing at the foot of the bed and barking.

When I left for work in the morning I'd give her a kiss and tell her to be good and that I'd see her tonight. She'd follow me to the door and sit. She'd sit there all day until I got home, just patiently waiting for me. I learned to turn the knob, wait a couple of seconds, then open the door. That gave her time to scramble away and let the door swing in.

She was such a sweet natured dog, I didn't think she had a mean bone in her body. Until the first time she came across a chew toy that was made out of rabbit fur. Her terrier instincts popped out and it was hers. She wouldn't even let me take it out of her mouth so the cashier could ring it up, I had to tear the price tag off and hand it over. There was no way she was letting go of that toy. She chewed it to shreds within a few minutes of getting it home. >From that time on, when I wanted to bring her a treat she'd really love, I bought her a toy made of rabbit fur. It was her idea of heaven.

About a year and a half ago I made a questionable decision. I?I'd heard about a parrot rescue and sanctuary near me and I made the mistake of visiting. As I walked through ?Amazon Alley? I heard this voice say "Hello! Hello!" Then, as I turned to go toward the cage I heard "Hey, pick me up!" A new parrot was added to the family. The problem was, Liza had always been fascinated by colored feathers. We were going through a weird little shop one day and she latched onto a feather boa and wouldn't let go. I wound up buying it, because she'd chewed it to pieces. It took a while to get the two of them to be agreeable but we finally settled down into a routine. The parrot sleeps upstairs in my home office at night, so each night I'd pick up the parrot and put him on my shoulder, then I'd pick up Liza and we'd go upstairs. Once there I'd lean over and let the parrot step off my shoulder and onto the perch I keep up there and then I'd settle back for a few minutes. The parrot insisted on grooming Liza's hair each night, and Liza enjoyed the scratchy goodness of the parrot's beak all over her back.

She was never able to take much exercise. After a few minutes of exertion, she'd be panting heavily and we'd have to take a break. Her vet told me not to worry; she just had a small windpipe. I didn't worry. On Saturday I had an early appointment to get the parrot's beak and claws done, and the housekeepers were going to be at the house, so I shut Liza and Princess into my office and took the parrot to the vet. I dropped the parrot off, but had some other errands to run, so I didn't let the dogs out of my office. I spent most of the day running trivial errands, and try as I might I can't remember most of them, or why they were so important. But when I got home, Liza was waiting by the office door for me and we went downstairs for dinner and a relaxing evening.

She was coughing a bit, but she did that sometimes. I didn't worry. We went to bed and everything seemed all right. But she woke me up around 2:00 AM, coughing badly and gagging. I didn't know what else to do, so we went downstairs and I sat with her. I thought I'd call the emergency vet first thing in the morning and make an appointment. At 5:00 I looked over at her and she was sitting up on the couch. She'd been very restless and couldn't seem to get comfortable. As she sat there, she started to fall over, first one way then the other. Something was really wrong, and I finally worried. We went to the emergency clinic and they immediately put her on a respirator with oxygen. Sunday, Monday and Tuesday they treated her with antibiotics and sedatives. I found out about collapsing trachea. Her coughing, her inability to exert herself, all those were signs and I didn't know. It had finally gotten to the point where her trachea was completely shut. They can treat collapsing trachea, if you catch it early enough. I had not. By the time the emergency clinic saw her, her trachea had collapsed all the way from her larynx to her bronchial tubes. There was nothing anyone could do.

Last night our family gathered for the last time as a whole unit. Liza was on her favorite down pillow, with her blanket tucked around her. She was alert and she wagged her tail and gave me kisses. We'd never been separated that long and she was happy to see me. They'd managed to take out the full tracheal tube that meant she had to be knocked completely out, and they'd made do with a small oxygen tube that went down her nostril and into her lungs, so she wasn't uncomfortable. We spent about an hour and a half together, me telling her what a wonderful, sweet and loving friend she'd been, and her happy just to be held and loved. I was holding her as the doctor gave her the last injection, and I felt her heart beat fade away and stop.

I didn't sleep last night. I'm still numb, but I see something that reminds me of her and I start to cry again. Not little tears, but big, chest-tearing sobs. I had to call in to work today, and I have to try and pull myself together. I just don't know how.


Mr. T

Mr. T

October 17, 2006

I was born in Gulfport, Mississippi on October 24, 1995. The family that has me now was not my first family. I had to find another family when I was about 10 months old because my family was having problems and they couldn’t keep me. I was fortunate to find the family that has me now. They had lost their dog Jake, a fifteen-year-old Black Lab, and they were looking for a small dog. My new family George and Linda Hicks are from Talladega, Al. I would love to tell you how my Mom found me, but that is a separate story altogether.

I enjoyed good health until the last couple of years. I always coughed a little when I got excited and my Mom was told it really wasn’t anything to be concerned about. I have been traveling with my family all over the southeast for the past 6 years. My Dad is a general contractor. Being a contractor’s dog you get to ride on all these wonderful machines, like a backhoe, a loader, and a tractor. My favorite ride I believe was my Mom’s bicycle. She had a big basket put on the front just for me and I would bark just about wherever we went. I barked so much my Mom told everyone we couldn’t afford a horn. I loved going with my family to the office trailer everyday and having a pillow under my Dad’s computer desk at the construction sites. I always enjoyed meeting the people that came to see my Dad.

The coughing was getting worse at times and we couldn’t understand what really was causing it. We kept checking with my Doctor and I would get better so we thought it was some type of bronchitis.

I began coughing a lot around June 27, 2005. My Mom took me to a different Doctor in another town because my regular Doctor was out of town. Well, the regular Doctor was also out of town and an assistant was in charge. She told my Mom that I needed an x-ray to determine what was wrong. She diagnosed my condition as Collapsed Trachea. That was the first we had heard that term used. The young assistant told my Mom that I had just 6 months to live. My Mom was devastated and she cried most of the way home. I tried to lick all her tears away, but they sure were coming down pretty fast.

My regular Doctor returned and my Mom told him what happened while he was away. He told us just an x-ray could not diagnose this problem and he said that the young assistant was wrong about the time limit with this condition. He made us feel a little better. He asked if we would we like to go to Auburn University and have it diagnosed. He called but they were not giving us much hope if it was CT so we declined going. My Doctor said the best bet would be to control the coughing with medicine. We fought this problem for about a year until it got so bad that my Mom had to rush me to my Doctor several times for tranquilizer shots to stop the coughing. My Doctor and my Mom talked it over again about sending me to Auburn. My Doctor called, but they still didn’t offer much hope. My Mom just couldn’t believe that there was no hope so she started searching the Internet and eventually ended up at a site called Yorkie Rescue. They told us that the University of Tennessee was specializing in this condition. My Doctor called and I had my first visit on June 27 at UT. It is amazing but that was one year to the day that the young assistant told me that I would be dead in 6 months. Guess I fooled her didn’t I!

UT did a complete evaluation and they told us that I indeed had CT and it was in the category 3 and 4 stages, which is the worse condition. My Mom talked it over with the Doctors and they decided to install 2 metal stints in my neck when we got back from vacation. That would also give them time to order and receive the stints from the manufacturers. These are the same stints used for humans and they have to order them by size. They set up my appointment on July 12. The doctors put me to sleep and slipped the stints in and I went home the next day.

It was amazing. I was not coughing at all. My throat was a little sore from the tubes they had to put down my throat during the surgery, but other than that we were all just amazed at the result. I was doing just great for about 2 weeks. I then began gagging really bad and couldn’t get comfortable. My Mom called the Doctors and we went back to UT on August 3 when they discovered the stints had fractured. They weren’t sure what to do since they had never removed stints before. We came home on the 4th with some strong medicine to keep me from coughing. A dog named Ringo had the same problem with fractured stints. They discovered how to remove the stints from Ringo while I was recuperating.

On Monday the 14 of August the Doctors removed the fractured pieces, but parts of both stints were doing what they were supposed to do and holding my trachea open. Then on Tuesday my trachea collapsed where there was not a stint to hold it open. They had to rush me to the oxygen tent. I was really struggling for breath. We went through a couple of days where the Doctors and my Mom really didn’t know what to do. We all knew I couldn’t go home like I was. I could not have survived long outside the oxygen tent.

On Wednesday they decided if just a couple of places in my trachea were collapsed they could put the rings on the outside of my trachea and suture my trachea to them to hold it open. They have very good success with this procedure. If the area was too large they could put in another stint that had just been donated to the university that they thought would work. On Thursday they looked in my trachea and decided to use the donated stint. It runs from one end of my neck to the other. I sure couldn’t go through a metal detector. I would set it off big time.

I did real well during the surgery, but Friday I got into a coughing fit and they had to put me back into the oxygen tent. Friday night I did better and they were able to take me out. I was getting depressed from not seeing my Mom and Dad and I was not eating. The Doctor told my Mom to come to UT on Saturday morning and see how I did when I saw her. They weren’t sure if I was going to be able to go home, but I fooled them all. There was nothing else they could do for me at UT so it was just me and my Mom from there.

I was able to come home that Saturday which was August 19 and I have been getting a little better every day. I know I will never be 100% but I will be 12 on October 24, 2006 and my time on this earth is limited anyway. At least I was given a gift of more time to spend with my family.

I want to thank all the Doctors and all the students at the University of Tennessee who took care of me. They were all so kind and compassionate toward me and my Mom. I also want to thank that wonderful lady who came to see me regularly in the hospital and gave me hugs and kisses when my Mom couldn’t. It sure made a difference to me and to my Mom. She also gave me a little crocheted angel bunny to watch over me while I am at home. It is still doing its job.

My Mom was curious to find out if my parents had CT. My Mom thought she might have contributed to it. She found my AKC Registration and was lucky to find my breeder. She still lived in Gulfport. She told us that both my parents had this condition. I would just hope that more breeders were just more careful, try to be more responsible and try to breed this condition out of other Yorkies and other breeds of dogs that have this.

Take care,

Mr. T Hicks

P.S. I lost my battle with CT on October 27, 2006. I had just been to UT on Monday the 23 of October for my 2 month check-up. I was doing pretty well. The last stint that they had installed had migrated a little, but was not causing me any problems. I was still gagging when I woke up from my naps, but other than that I was doing okay. UT also discovered that I had an infection in my trachea and in the x-rays they took maybe a mild case of pneumonia. We returned home that Tuesday. On Wednesday I was not feeling well at all. That afternoon about 5:30 my Mom was trying to give me my antibiotic and I almost fell off the couch trying to turn my head away from her. She put me down on the floor and I just couldn’t stand up. My Mom immediately called my Doctor and they discussed it, but they both felt that maybe it was the infection causing me to be that way and I had recuperated quickly. I had another bout with that strange feeling about 9:30 that night, but also recuperated quickly and went to sleep.

Thursday morning I did it again and my Mom rushed me to my Doctor who immediately put me on oxygen. He called UT and they asked if my Mom could bring me back. The Doctor and my Mom arranged for me to have an oxygen bottle to take with us just in case I would need it. Thank goodness they did because Mom had to give me oxygen along the way about 5 times. I sure wouldn’t have made it to UT without the oxygen. As soon as I got to UT my friend and my Doctor was standing outside and rushed me to the oxygen chamber. The plan was to stabilize me until the next morning and then perform some more procedures to find out what was going on.

I believe I went into cardiac arrest around 6 that Friday morning. They tried their best to revive me but to no avail. They told my Mom that I had a few spells during the night, but recovered pretty quickly.

Before I left to come home UT scoped my trachea to see if they might find out what exactly happened and if the stint had anything to do with me going into cardiac arrest. They found out the left bronchi had closed completely and I was just living on one lung. Unfortunately the bronchi are not something they can fix at this point.

I had a wonderful and much loved life. There was never a night I didn’t spend without my Mom and Dad until I went to UT for my surgeries. That was about 11 years. My family loved my deeply and we fought this condition until my heart couldn’t fight it any more.

As I said before, all the Doctors can do is to give you more time to spend with your family. I, and my family, want to thank my Doctor and the Doctors and students at UT who did just that and gave us more time.


In Memory of Emily

Emily was diagnosed a years ago with having a collapsing trachea and her owners were not informed about what a life threatening problem this was. Emily was living a fairly normal life and then all of a sudden her trachea collapsed over the weekend and we were not able to get help for her in time to save her precious little life. Emily was 5 years old her Mommy and Daddy are devastated.


Chance's Story

CH Bejaze Chances Are

Chance finished his championship in November 2002. In February 2005 I woke up to Chance wheezing really bad. I had never heard him do this before but it was obvious to me that he was having a problem. I initially thought he had an upper respiratory problem. My vet was on vacation and I didn't know the relief vet so I took Chance to Advanced Critical Care. He was hospitalized and had many tests including a bronchosopy that verified the trachea problem. Chance was there for 3 days and I brought him home. He is on medicine and will have to take this for the rest of his life. I had him neutered a month later and the vet did it without using a trach tube. I was told that to use one on him again would kill him. He is doing pretty good most days. I have to be very careful with him and toys or when someone comes that he does not get too excited. I am hoping and praying for a surgery that will help dogs like mine.

Carlie's Story

I lost my beloved Carlie when she was eight years old.....due to collapsed trachea. We had been away for a two day weekend trip and my husbands Mother came to stay with our dogs. Carlie loved her ... however, Carlie's Mother, my Holly, always howled when we left. I believe she started Carlie doing the same and when we came back, Carlie was 'hoarse" from excessive barking or howling... She was struggling the next day. I took her to the Vet the same day. He was off that day and another Vet saw her instead. He tried to give her oxygen and sedated her. No improvement. I took her back to my Vet the following day. We tried and tried everything to calm her, to no avail. The last trip in ~ the third time in one day ~ I sat crying in the waiting room and Carlie, stopped panting, turned around and kissed my tears!! She died shortly afterwards.

I can't remember hurting that bad....ever. In looking back, I wish I had taken her to the University and tried their surgery, before she got so bad. Also, I wish I hadn't let her get overweight. I know, for sure, that didn't help.

All my other Yorkies were old when I lost them. However, my Carlie was much too young to die. I ache with her loss.



I have a beautiful 3 year old Yorkie named Chelsie. She was recently diagnosed with a collapsing trachea at the University of Wisconsin veterinary Hospital. We are completely devastated, and desperately want her to have the surgery.

She is progressively getting worse, and it is horrible to watch her labor for each breath. The surgery is estimated at between $2,000.00-$5,000.00.

I'm hoping to find a resource to help us raise funds to pay for the surgery, as our budget is tight. I notice the rescue collects donations for other Yorkies, and I'm praying you will consider helping us. I am enclosing a picture of Chelsie, she is smiling...

Thank You so much.

10/05 Bottom Photo after Surgery.




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