Kennel cough is a highly contagious disease in dogs. The medical term for kennel cough is infectious tracheobronchitis. This is a respiratory illness in canines.
Kennel cough could be fatal for very young or very old dogs whose immune systems are not strong enough to battle the viruses responsible for the illness.
Symptoms and complications of kennel cough
Kennel cough is a viral infection of the upper respiratory tract. Several types of viruses are responsible for this ailment. Secondary bacterial infections often cause serious complications.
This contagious illness of the respiratory tract spreads when a dog is exposed to the mucus of a canine suffering from kennel cough. This infectious disease spreads when the infected dog coughs or sneezes.
The common symptoms of this disease are coughing, sneezing, lethargy and fever. The diseased animal will produce a gagging sound. It may have dry cough or it might emit a yellowish discharge or phlegm while coughing.
Kennel cough treatment and prevention
If left untreated kennel cough can lead to pneumonia. Healthy dogs could recover from this illness naturally within a couple of weeks. It usually takes about four weeks for the dog to recover completely from the disease.
Your veterinarian might prescribe antibiotics to treat secondary bacterial infections that might complicate the disease. However, antibiotics could not heal the primary viral infection. Cough suppressants are sometimes recommended for reducing coughs.
Intranasal vaccine prevents recurrent viral infections of the respiratory tract. The vaccine builds antibodies capable of preventing further viral attacks.
Only a licensed veterinarian could give a dog the intranasal vaccine. To prevent kennel cough, kennel cough-preventing serum could be injected in the dog’s body.
To facilitate speedy recovery, give your dog vitamin C supplements. A diseased canine could be given up to 500 mg of vitamin C per ten pounds its body weight.
However, prolonged intake of high doses of vitamin C might irritate the digestive tract of your pet. Excessive vitamin C intake is associated with irritable bowel syndrome in dogs.
You can even give your pet few drops of honey every hour to reduce the respiratory discomfort. Peppermint tea could reduce coughing.