Kennel Cough: As If Being Locked Up Wasn't Bad Enough...

Kennel Cough

Characterized by the inflammation of the upper respiratory system, Kennel Cough, or Tracheobronchitis, is a highly contagious canine illness named because infection can spread quickly amongst dogs while they are in close quarters, such as a kennel. The kennel cough itself does not exist and become inflammed on its own but is caused by several viral infections -- all of which can be vaccinated early -- such as: canine distemper, canine adenovirus, canine parainfluenza virus, canine respiratory coronavirus, and bacerial infection bordetella bronchiseptica. Kennel Cough is spread by an infected dog through sneezing and coughing, through contact with contaminated surfaces, and also by direct contact; hence the reason why it is highly contagious, since it is so easily contracted. Symptoms begin 3-5 days after exposure and include harsh dry hacking, retching, sneezing, snorting, gagging, and vomiting. Symptoms occur in response to light trachea pressure, excitement, or exercise. Kennel Cough remains highly contagious for days, or even for weeks, after symptoms disappear. If left untreated, kennel cough can lead to pneumonia and other serious conditions. Antibiotics are given to treat bacterial infection in kennel cough cases, as well as a cough suppressant if the cough is non-productive -- meaning nothing gets coughed up or loosened by the cough. Preventing kennel cough can be done by vaccinating for the viral infections listed above and by keeping kennels disinfected regularly. If you suspect that your pet has kennel cough, find further information within the articles here on