Dr. Sophie Bell a Veterinary Surgeon looks into another myth for our mythbuster series. If your dog has been vaccinated against kennel cough, does that mean it can't catch it?
The kennel cough vaccine is also known as the Bordetella vaccine and it protects our dogs against several but not all strains of kennel cough.
Other bacteria and viruses can cause kennel cough, so your dog can still suffer despite being vaccinated. But it doesn't mean you shouldn't get the vaccine.
Traditionally, the vaccine is administered into your dog’s nostril, but now there are some vaccines that can be given orally making the procedure a little less scary.
Dogs occasionally show mild symptoms post-vaccination like a human cold. It is important to note that the virus is shed at a very weak level for up to 35 days from their nose and mouth and up to 70 days in faeces. So be mindful when mixing with other dogs and always pick their poo up.
Although the vaccine does not cover all strains, it still protects them and is especially important for dogs with underlying heart or respiratory issues. It can also make the symptoms milder.
Symptoms of kennel cough
- Hacking Cough
Kennel cough can cause a nasty hacking cough as if they are trying to clear a bone from their throat. Some dogs develop a fever and become anorexic. Although serious complications are rare, this upper respiratory tract infection can progress to the lungs causing pneumonia, which can be serious.
Did you know that when your dog is infected, they are shedding the virus and we can carry it on our clothing?
It is highly contagious so be sure to keep them away from other dogs and if you need a vet visit, wait outside the clinic until the vet is ready for you.
How can I help my dog with kennel cough?
- Make sure they have plenty of rest
- Offer tasty, smelly foods if they are not keen to eat
- Give some honey with warm water as it can help soothe the throat and ease the cough
You must always get them checked if they seem unwell, go off their food or the breathing becomes laboured, rapid or both. These are signs that the condition may be progressing.
Read our other Mythbusting Articles:
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- Mythbuster: There is no need to clean my pet's teeth
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- Mythbuster: Alabama Rot is contagious from dog to dog
- Mythbuster: Owners should stop feeding a cat or dog that is vomiting or has diarrhoea