A Guide to Natural Dog Cough Medicine

Many varieties of dog cough medicine are synthetic and potentially harmful to the dog's health. Because of the possible negative side effects of these synthetic varieties of dog cough medicine, more natural alternative treatments have been developed that do not have the same negative effects.

It should be noted that, although natural cough medications for dogs are potentially less harmful in terms of side effects, their effectiveness in fighting disease is not as thoroughly tested, so they may not work as well for actually treating the illness.

Causes of Dog Cough

Dog cough is a disease of the upper respiratory system analogous to the common cold in humans, the symptoms of which usually include a swollen or inflamed windpipe, frequent coughing or sneezing, and discharge from the eyes or nose. The infection can be either viral or bacterial, and can usually transfer from animal to animal via the air. The infection is usually located at the back of the mouth or throat.

Synthetic Treatments

The most common treatments for dog cough are either anti-viral drugs or antibiotics. These drugs work by flooding the dog's body with chemicals that are intended not to be harmful to the dog, but fatally toxic to the pathogen infecting it, thereby eliminating the pathogen population inside the dog. However, these types of treatment are not ideal; they are entirely foreign substances to the dog's body, and are sometimes harmful to both the pathogen and the dog.

Every individual organism reacts differently to every drug, so there is some degree of unpredictability on how the dog will react. The immune system of the dog may react to the drug, treating it as a pathogen in itself. This autoimmune response is similar to an allergy, and can result in harmful side effects, the worst of which include liver and respiratory problems.

Natural Treatments for Dog Cough

Instead of using potentially harmful drugs on your dog, it may be safer for you to use natural cough treatments. These types of treatments usually involve herbal blends and dietary supplements, and do not include any type of synthetic drug. Some popular brand names of these natural remedies are Vibactra Plus, Lie Cell Support, Kennel Koff, Cough/Cold, and Adizone. Since they are naturally occurring substances, dogs have evolved with them in their environment for millions of years and are therefore more physiologically adjusted to them, which means that exposure is much less likely to elicit a negative response. Natural treatments can work in a variety of ways. Some are natural antibiotics that work in much the same way as synthetic antibiotics, while others work by strengthening the dog's natural immune system.

In most cases, synthetic cough treatments will do more good than harm for dogs suffering from upper respiratory illness, but sometimes these types of drugs will have negative effects. If your dog is particularly susceptible to side effects from synthetic cough treatments, it may be better for you to administer more natural alternatives.