FAQs about Canine Cough (Kennel Cough)
All You Need to Know about Canine Cough (Kennel Cough)
What is Canine Cough?
The medical terminology is “Infectious Tracheobronchitis” which is a highly contagious upper respiratory infection that is spread by one or more of these infectious agents: parainfluenza, adenovirus, or Bordetella. This airborne canine virus is like a sinus infection for humans and is often seasonal. Humidity (excessive moisture in the air) seems to breed the virus and allow it to spread faster so it’s not unusual to see an outbreak of Canine Cough in the summer.
What are the symptoms of Canine Cough?
The main symptom of Canine Cough is, obviously, the cough. The dry, hacking cough mimics the sound of a cat hacking up a hairball and can be exacerbated by excessive activity. This can also be accompanied by sneezing and nasal discharge which can last from a few days to several weeks. The coughing may be more annoying than anything and does not usually becoming something serious however some dogs with weaker immune systems can develop a secondary infection such as pneumonia. Although there are symptoms of the virus it has an incubation period that can last 3 to 14 days. A dog can carry the virus around without it producing any symptoms for quite some time
If a dog is showing signs of Canine Cough it is imperative that they see a veterinarian as soon as possible to be diagnosed and get started on a treatment plan. If we have a coughing dog at Camp, they are isolated until their owner can bring them to the vet. It is important to have an up to date Emergency Contact when you are away in case your dog becomes ill so they can bring them to the vet as they cannot stay here and risk infecting other dogs.
Can my dog still get Canine Cough if he has been vaccinated?
The best preventative measure for the Canine Cough is a vaccine known as Bordetella. All Campers are required to have this vaccine; however it only vaccinates against a particular strain of the virus that is more prevalent at the time. With over 100 different strains of the virus it would impossible to vaccinate against every possible strain. The Bordetella vaccine is a preventative measure to keep all of our Campers safe but it doesn’t guarantee your dog will never come in contact with this airborne virus.
Do dogs only get Canine Cough at kennels?
While it’s often referred to as “Kennel Cough” this airborne virus can actually spread anywhere there are multiple canines in close proximity; the dog park, on a dog walk, dog shows, groomers, even at the vet. Your dog could catch it by sniffing another dog on a walk or sharing a water pail at the park. It is more common in kennels because of the number of dogs in close proximity. Also the excitement and stress of a less familiar environment can result in lower resistance to any disease (similar to why children are more susceptible to the flu at school rather than at home).
What preventative measures does Camp Bow Wow take for Canine Cough?
Every Camper is required to be current with the Bordetella vaccine.
We have rigorous cleaning practices we use every day to sanitize our Camp and help prevent the spread of any illness.
We ask that you let us know if your dog has contracted a case of Canine Cough so we can take extra precautions to prevent the spread of the illness.
If your dog is showing any symptoms of illness please don’t bring them to Camp until they recover or are treated by your veterinarian. We do not allow any Camper who has Kennel Cough to return to Camp until 10 days after their symptoms have stopped.
If you have questions about this virus or regarding the other vaccinations we require at Camp, don’t hesitate to ask!