Unfortunately kennel cough is all around Regina right now. We've heard that it's pretty much everywhere - with dogs who board, and those who simply go for a walk in their neighbourhood. The good news is that this year's strain seems to be a mild one that tends to go away relatively easily.
After getting the Bordatella vaccination, many dog owners believe that their dog will never get kennel cough. However, as with anything medical, it's a little more complicated than that. Kennel cough typically involves a couple of organisams working together - often the Bordatella bacteria combined with a virus. So while a dog may be protected from the bacteria, they may not have protection from the other organism.
Very much like human colds, kennel cough moves within a community because dogs shed the disease without showing symptoms for between two to three months after infection. It's air-borne so it spreads just like human colds go around between kids at school and colleagues at work.
Most cases simply go away on their own after a week to 10 days of coughing where the dog otherwise is normal and active. However, in the same way that a human cold can transform into a serious medical issue it can too especially for the young, the old, and those with a compromised immune system.
To prevent disease, talk with your veterinarian about a suitable vaccination schedule.
For a natural recovery, give your dog a little honey as a cough suppressent, avoid tugging on their collar (have them wear a body harness instead of a collar), and keep them calm - excitment brings on coughing spells.
As always, talk with your veterinarian about what's best for your dog. They're in the best position to help them stay healthy. Some veterinarians prescribe antibiotics to deal with the Bordetella bacteria portion of the infection and reduce the risk of other bacterial infections. See your veterinarian immediately if coughing lasts longer than normal or gets worst instead of better, or if coughing is accompanied with a poor appetite, fever, and/or listlessness, or to rule out more serious issues such as collapsed tracheas, pneumonia, tumours and other serious issues, which also cause dogs to cough.
The good news is that if your dog recovers from Bordetella they're typically immune for the comming months.
Here's a video of a dog with the typical kennel cough cough.
Read more at Veterinary Partner.