Main menu


Kennel Cough

Kennel Cough

Kennel coughing is a disease that dogs can suffer from. It's hard to watch your friend suffer, but it's usually not fatal. Symptoms, in fact, can be confused with the flu. It can last up to several weeks and sometimes clear up without medical help. However, a veterinarian's advice is recommended if you have any questions about your dog's health. Kennel cough can become very serious and can lead to pneumonia or a sign of a serious medical condition.

Kennel cough can be caused by several viruses or bacterial infections or both. It takes its name from the persistent and hard cough it causes and the ease with which it spreads to other dogs. Because dogs cannot cover their mouths when they cough, the disease spreads rapidly. The affected area is the upper airways. This causes severe coughing. Kennel cough can be the result of other diseases or disorders such as heart worm, allergies and pneumonia. It can be caused by bacteria that form inside your dog or that he or she picks up through air of direct contact with another sick dog. Kennel cough can also be caused by a canine form of influenza and other viruses. When caused by a combination of viruses and bacteria, it becomes a very serious disease.

It can take three to ten days between the time the dog gets the disease and the time the symptoms begin to appear. This is called the incubation period. Symptoms include sneezing, gagging, and hacking to go along with a doeous nose. A dry cough that is very persistent and sometimes leads to vomiting is a telltale sign of the kennel cough. Most dogs maintain their appetite and activity level at first. If symptoms worsen and pneumonia develops, a fever, lack of appetite and loss of energy can develop. This is a life-threatening condition for your friend and should be taken seriously.

Kennel cough treatment can usually be treated at home. There is no outright cure and most cases clear up on their own in one to two weeks. Some cases will need the help of a veterinarian, however. There are antibiotics your veterinarian can prescribe. Veterinarians will sometimes administer other treatments to help reduce symptoms and make the dog more comfortable during recovery. You can give them a tablespoon of honey every day to help relieve some of the discomfort that comes with constant coughing. Sometimes an electric humidifier can help and some veterinarians recommend using something like Vicks humidifiers that add air treatments to help breathe.

The kennel cough is uncomfortable, but does not have to be fatal. Keep an eye on the symptoms of your donation and try to make sure that your friend has access to a lot of water and gets a lot of sleep. Fluids and sleep are very important for the recovery process. If symptoms worsen or you have questions, please contact a qualified veterinarian.