K Charlotte, North Carolina 1/12/2013 9:49:23 AM C,My dog had the same symptoms. Excessive coughing was the first symptom that we experienced. After he fainted one time, we took him to a specialist and he was diagnosed with an enlarged heart in the left side. Unfortunately, even though we put him on medicine, his disease continued to progress and he passed away after a year and a half of the diagnosis with congestive heart failure. The sooner the problem is detected the better the chances they can live longer. And medicine will help, but without it the heart will continue to grow. My maltese was 10. I wish you the best of luck!