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Kennel Cough and How to Avoid It

Kennel cough is an upper respiratory infection that affects dogs and is often common when your dog has spent time at a boarding kennel. While usually not a serious condition, it can make your dog very uncomfortable unless treated. Kennel cough will often display by your pet constantly making hacking noises or sounding like they are choking on something.

Kennel Cough and How to Avoid It

How does my dog contract Kennel Cough?

Kennel cough has many causes, most commonly by them inhaling bacteria or virus particles. These particles can be transmitted through a variety of ways, including being spread through the air, coming into contact with contaminated objects or having direct contact with other infected dogs (often the case in boarding kennels). Other factors can make your pet prone to Kennel Cough, such as:

  • Cold weather
  • Exposure to dust or cigarette smoke
  • Poorly ventilated areas
  • Poor living conditions

Unfortunately, if you’ve chosen a boarding kennel that doesn’t have good ventilation, is poorly equipped for cold weather or is overcrowded, your dog may have a high chance of contracting Kennel Cough.

How do I prevent and treat Kennel Cough?

Kennel Cough is very contagious, so if you believe your dog has Kennel Cough you should keep them away from other animals and contact your vet straight away. Your vet will be able to recommend and provide medication to help speed the recovery process and minimise the symptoms of Kennel Cough during the course of the infection.

To help prevent Kennel Cough, there are a few steps you can take when checking your pet into a boarding kennel:

  1. Inspect the boarding kennel before your pet’s stay
  2. Check the boarding kennel has good ventilation and adequate living conditions, such as warm enclosed areas during the cold winter months
  3. Ask if the boarding kennel checks the other dogs for Kennel Cough
  4. Make sure your dog has had up to date vaccinations before they are placed in the boarding kennels care

While Kennel Cough isn’t a serious infection it can make your dog extremely uncomfortable during the duration and may make them prone to contracting other, more serious infections. Make sure your dog is vaccinated and you choose the right boarding kennel for their stay, to reduce the chance they will suffer Kennel Cough.