ANY SIGNS OF KENNEL COUGH, PLEASE KEEP YOUR PET HOME AND BRING THEM TO THE VET. IF THEY START SHOWING SIGNS AT DAYCARE WE WILL CALL YOU TO PICK THEM UP.
What is Kennel Cough?
Kennel Cough is a broad term covering any infectious or contagious condition of dogs where coughing is a feature. The term tracheobronchitis describes the location of the infection in the windpipe and bronchial tubes. Several viruses and bacteria can be involved. These include adenovirus type-2 (distinct from the adenovirus type 1 that causes infectious hepatitis), parainfluenza virus, and the bacterium Bordetella bronchiseptica. Because the infection spreads when dogs are housed together, it is often seen soon after dogs have been in kennels, hence the name.
What are the clinical signs, besides coughing?
- Runny nose or eyes
- Lack of appetite
- Swollen tonsils
- Depressed behavior
What is the treatment?
There is no specific treatment for the viral infections, but many of the more severe signs are due to bacterial involvement, particularly Bordetella. Antibiotics are useful against this bacterium, although some antibiotic resistance has been reported. Some cases require prolonged treatment, but most infections resolve within a week, three weeks at most. Mild signs may linger even when the bacteria have been eliminated.
How can I prevent my dog contracting Kennel Cough?
Most vaccination programs your veterinarian will recommend contain adenovirus and parainfluenza. Bordetella vaccination is also highly recommended.
How effective are these vaccines?
Immunity, even after natural infection with respiratory viruses like parainfluenza, or bacteria such as Bordetella, is neither solid nor long-lasting. We cannot expect vaccines to do much better. Therefore it is sometimes recommended to give a booster dose, particularly of Bordetella vaccine, shortly before a scheduled period in kennels and every six months to ensure maximum protection against this troublesome infection.
Kennel cough is transmitted by direct dog-to-dog contact through aerosols and droplets coughed into the air by infected dogs, as well objects like toys, bowls, bedding, collars, leashes and kennels. People also can transmit kennel cough to other dogs by not washing their hands after touching a sick dog. However, people cannot get kennel cough from dogs.