‘Kennel cough’ is a phrase most dog owners will have heard of, but what actually is it?
Kennel cough describes a respiratory infection in dogs that can be caused by a variable collection of viruses and bacteria. These bacteria and viruses are highly contagious and spread from dog to dog via aerolized respiratory secretions. Signs of kennel cough include: coughing (typically a dry, hacking cough), discharge from the nose, sneezing, fever and sometimes lethargy and reduced appetite. These signs will often self-resolve over a period of up to two weeks. Many dogs will remain bright and well and do not require any treatment for kennel cough, although some dogs will benefit from medications to help reduce the coughing. In some more serious cases antibiotics may be required.
It is recommended that dogs receive an annual ‘kennel cough’ vaccination, which will provide protection against canine parainfluenza virus and Bordatella bronchiseptica, two of the common causes of this disease. Unfortunately it is not possible to vaccinate against all of the organisms that can lead to kennel cough and similar to human flu viruses, canine viruses can mutate. For these reasons vaccination cannot rule out that a dog may catch kennel cough, but it can provide significant protection against the most serious forms and will often be a requirement for boarding kennels and day care. Click here to read more on other recommended vaccinations for dogs.
Our community has a large dog population and if you suspect your dog has, or your dog is undergoing treatment for kennel cough, you must be mindful that this is infectious to other dogs. Take precautions such as avoiding doggie day care, dog parks, kennels and dog walking group and do not allow your dog to drink from communal water bowls.
Always contact your veterinarian for further advice if you have any questions or concerns regarding kennel cough or if your dog is showing any of the above symptoms contact your local Sydney Animal Hospitals on;
Newtown (02) 9519 4111
69-73 Erskineville Road Erskineville
Inner West (02) 9516 1466
1A Northumberland Ave Stanmore
Norwest (02) 8883 0411
Unit 8, 1-3 Celebration Dr Bella Vista
Kellyville (02) 8883 0533
106 Windsor Rd Kellyville
Newport (02) 9997 4609
1 Palm Rd Newport
Avalon (02) 9918 0833
710 Barrenjoey Rd Avalon Beach
Book An Appointment Online