Kennel Cough - How to Properly Treat Your Dog

  • 18/05/2014
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Kennel cough is a term that is used to describe viral and bacterial infections causing inflammation of a canine's windpipe and voice box. It is also a form of bronchitis in dogs which is the same as chest cold in humans. Usually, this dog health problem may clean on its own but it is highly-contagious and may affect other dogs.

What are the symptoms? You will know if your companion friend has this condition when he has dry cough with a "honking" sound. In most cases, your dog may look healthy except that he has a persistent cough. Even your dog's activity level and his appetite won't change. However, you shouldn't be alarmed if he gags and he coughs up foamy white phlegm. These signs may even become worse after an exercise or he feels excited or is pulled against his collar. Some dogs with this problem may also have fever as well as nasal discharge.

The very first thing to do if you suspect that your dog has this condition is to isolate him right away from other dogs and see the veterinarian to see if there are treatment options for kennel cough.

Dogs can get kennel cough in a number of ways. It can be spread directly from one dog to another, through aerosols in the air, or through contaminated objects. Kennel cough is also likely to spread in poor ventilated or enclosed areas while in a kennel or shelter, training class, dog grooming center, or direct contact while in a vaccination clinic.

Kennel cough can be very contagious that your dog can catch it just from using the water dish at the dog park or just by interacting with another dog. A lot of kennels will not accept your dog if he hasn't been vaccinated against bordetella and parainfluenza. Bordetella and parainfluenza are the two causes of kennel cough. So before boarding your dog in a kennel, make sure you have a proof that your dog has recently been vaccinated against bordetella and parainfluenza.

Dogs that are frequently in contact with other dogs are prone to having kennel cough especially in poorly ventilated places. Puppies and unvaccinated dogs also have higher risk of developing kennel cough. To prevent kennel cough, prevent your dog from being exposed. Another thing is to make sure your dog is vaccinated against several agents involved in kennel cough like bordetella, parainfluenza, and adenovirus-2. Always ask your vet if your dog is recommended to be vaccinated against them and how often the vaccination will be. If a dog already has caught the virus, a vaccination may not be useful anymore.

The signs of this dog condition may decrease and may finally disappear after three weeks. For young puppies, geriatric dogs, and other immuno-compromised animals, it would take about six weeks or even more to recover. There are also some cases in which a dog remain infectious for longer periods of time even though the symptoms already have cleared up.

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