Understanding Kennel Cough in Dogs: Causes, Treatment, and Home Remedies
P Purple cow Roberts

Understanding Kennel Cough in Dogs: Causes, Treatment, and Home Remedies

Aug 30, 2023

Kennel cough, also known as canine cough, is a common respiratory infection that affects dogs, causing a persistent, dry cough. In this article, we'll explore what kennel cough is, its causes, treatment options, home remedies, and when to seek veterinary care.

What is Kennel Cough?

Kennel cough is a highly contagious respiratory infection that primarily affects a dog's upper airways, including the trachea and bronchi. It's often marked by a distinct dry, hacking cough that can be concerning for dog owners.

Causes of Kennel Cough

The leading culprits behind kennel cough are the bacterium Bordetella bronchiseptica and the canine parainfluenza virus. These pathogens can be contracted in areas where dogs congregate closely, such as kennels, shelters, and dog parks.

Treatment for Kennel Cough

In most cases, kennel cough is self-limiting and resolves within a few weeks. However, there are steps you can take to help your dog recover more comfortably:

  1. Rest: Give your dog plenty of rest to aid its recovery process.
  2. Hydration: Ensure your dog has access to fresh water to stay hydrated. OrilCARE can help rehydrate your dog.
  3. Humidify the Air: Using a humidifier can alleviate your dog's cough by maintaining moisture in the air.
  4. Cough Suppressants: Consult your vet before giving any medication. Some over-the-counter cough suppressants might be appropriate.
  5. Antibiotics: If a bacterial infection is suspected, your vet might prescribe antibiotics to prevent or treat secondary infections.
  6. Isolation: Prevent the spread of infection by keeping your dog away from other dogs.


Can Kennel Cough be passed to Humans?

While uncommon, Kennel Cough can be passed to humans. As such, personal hygiene practices should be followed to prevent the spread.

  1. Disinfect: Use SteriGENE to disinfect dog toys, water or bowls, and surfaces around your home.
  2. Soft toys and bedding: Wash and disinfect dog bedding, soft toys and anything else that is machine washable with SteriGENE Laundry Liquid.
  3. Hand Hygiene: Frequently wash your hands to keep bugs at bay with 4KLEEN Hand Scrub. Where water isn’t available to wash your hands, use hand sanitiser.


Home Remedies for Kennel Cough 

While veterinary care is crucial, a few home remedies can offer relief:

  1. Honey: A small amount of honey (1/2 to 1 teaspoon) can soothe your dog's throat. Ensure your dog isn't allergic to honey.
  2. Steam Therapy: Allow your dog to inhale steam from a bowl of warm water to alleviate congestion.
  3. Chicken Broth: Offer plain, low-sodium chicken broth to encourage drinking and hydration.


When to Visit the Vet

Consult a veterinarian if your dog experiences severe or persistent symptoms, difficulty breathing, lethargy, loss of appetite, or if the cough is accompanied by other concerning signs. Puppies, senior dogs, and those with pre-existing conditions require prompt attention.

Kennel cough is a common ailment that can be managed with proper care, rest, and, if necessary, veterinary treatment. By understanding the causes, symptoms, and available remedies, you can ensure your furry friend's comfort and speedy recovery.

Remember, while these home remedies provide relief, professional veterinary care is essential to guarantee your dog's well-being.

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