Causes of Dog Kennel Cough

The dog kennel cough, also known as tracheobronchitis, is an infectious disease that causes the upper respiratory system to get inflamed. The condition is highly contagious, especially in kennels, hence the name of the infection. The causes of the kennel cough may include viruses or bacteria and the disease is spread through the air when an infected dog sneezes or coughs or through direct contact with an infected canine. In rare cases, the disease may also be spread through the ingestion of infected feces.

Causes of Dog Kennel Cough

The kennel cough is caused either by viruses or bacteria. The most common causes of tracheobronchitis include:

  • Canine adenovirus, a vsirus that can be spread though air or infected feces; there are 2 types of adenovirus, the type 1 may cause hepatitis and respiratory diseases while type 2 adenovirus is responsible for causing the kennel cough; if left untreated, the adenovirus can be fatal, especially in younger puppies or senior dogs
  • Canine distemper, which is caused by viruses and is more common in puppies under the age of 6 months and is signaled by lack of appetite, watery eyes and a runny nose, muscle twitching, excessive salivation and even seizures; the disease can be fatal
  • Parainfluenza is caused by viruses and will cause symptoms such as coughing, sore throat and a general state of weakness; the disease is manageable with antibiotics, but if left untreated may lead to pneumonia
  • Bortadella is a bacteria that can cause symptoms similar to the symptoms of a respiratory infection or a common cold; the bacteria can be of several types and the bacterium known as B. brinchiseptica is the one that may cause the kennel cough in dogs; the bacteria can be manageable through the administration of antibiotics
  • Respiratory coronavirus is a contagious gastrointestinal disease and is spread through feces, causing vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, severe dehydration and a lack of appetite; the virus can be easily eliminated and the dog’s environment must also be cleaned; the virus can be destroyed by common household disinfectants

Symptoms of Kennel Cough

The symptoms of kennel cough can manifest 3 to 5 days after the infection was contracted.

The most common symptoms of kennel cough include a dry cough. Other symptoms include sneezing, diarrhea, vomiting or gagging, especially after the dog has performed strenuous activities. The dog will also get tired very easily.

Fever may also be present, but not in all cases.

Treating Tracheobronchitis in Dogs

Typically, the kennel cough in dogs is treated with oral antibiotics. If the cough is severe and dry, cough suppressants will also be prescribed.

If left untreated, the kennel cough can advance to pneumonia.

The kennel cough can be prevented by vaccinating the dogs against adenovirus, distemper, parainflueza or Bortadella.

It is also indicated that the cages in the kennels are always disinfected and dogs with should not be accepted in the kennel before they are not properly vaccinated.