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Kennel Cough - The Basics

The basics about Kennel Cough and how Diesel & Blue Doggie Daycare manage it

Kennel cough, also known as canine cough, is a highly contagious condition. To protect your pooch, and others in our community, learn more about what it is, how it spreads, the symptoms, vaccinations and treatment, how to prevent it, and how diesel & blue manage it.

What is kennel cough?

Kennel cough is an airborne illness caused by several highly infectious agents:

  • Bordetella bronchiseptica

  • Canine Adenovirus,

  • Canine Parainfluenza virus

Kennel cough infection results in an inflammation of the larynx (voice box) and the trachea (windpipe) which leads to potentially distressing coughing. Pneumonia can also be a consequence.

How is kennel cough caught?

Pooches catch kennel cough when they inhale virus or bacteria particles into their respiratory tract. Even a brief encounter such as meeting an infected dog while walking or through the fence can lead to your dog catching it.

Kennel cough can be picked up anywhere your dog comes into contact with other doggies - at a pet-friendly cafe, dog park, out walking, and yes, even at doggie daycare.

What are the symptoms of kennel cough?

The classic symptom is a dry hacking persistent cough that sounds similar to a goose honk. Often pawrents think that their pooch is just pulling on the lead too hard, or has eaten something which has irritated their throat but if it continues, it could be a kennel cough

Other symptoms include:

  • Sneezing

  • Runny nose

  • Eye discharge

What is the treatment for kennel cough?

Most cases will resolve without treatment however this will depend on the symptoms being presented, any underlying health conditions and the age of your pooch.

Antibiotics may be prescribed by your vet to speed recovery or minimise symptoms during the course of the infection.

Keeping your dog in a well-humidified area may also help to reduce the coughing.

Most dogs will recover completely within three weeks although it may take up to six weeks in older dogs or those with other medical issues.

Since ongoing, serious kennel cough can lead to pneumonia we recommend following up with your vet if they don’t improve within the expected timefra

This also applies should your dog display:

  • Rapid breathing

  • Not eating

  • Listlessness

These are not typical symptoms of kennel cough and could signify more serious conditions.

How does vaccination against kennel cough work?

The C5 vaccination, given yearly to older dogs - puppies are on a different vaccination regime - covers both the bacterial and viral elements of kennel cough. These antigens stimulate the body into protecting itself - it creates antibodies that then fight and protect against infection in the future.

The way the vaccine works is also why some dogs may appear to have mild symptoms of the disease a few days after the vaccination

But my dog is vaccinated, so how did they get it?

Even fully vaccinated dogs can still catch kennel cough since no vaccine covers every strain of kennel cough, and it mutates quickly.

If your pooch has only recently been vaccinated yet already had an active infection, a vaccination will not treat the infection.

How to prevent kennel cough

Ensure your dog is vaccinated yearly and avoid contact (even casual encounters) with unvaccinated pooches or puppies not yet fully vaccinated.

How diesel & blue manage kennel cough

  • We ensure that all our doggie clients are vaccinated yearly against kennel cough. It’s a condition of attendance

  • Any dogs who appear symptomatic of kennel cough are sent home immediately and asked to stay away until symptoms are no longer present.

  • We continuously and rigorously disinfect the day care centre at the completion of every day as well as spot cleaning during the day when any fluids such as wee, poo and saliva are found

  • Our team regularly refresh all water bowls in the centre where disease may be found

  • We educate our pawrents as much as possible about kennel cough and how to prevent it

Overall, if you think your dog may have contracted kennel cough, keep them home to minimise any spread and seek advice from your vet.

Got more questions? Just get in touch with our team and we’ll happily answer any questions you have.

If you have any questions or concerns about your pooch and Kennel Cough, get in touch with us at diesel and blue.

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