Kennel cough is a respiratory infection in dogs. It is a lay term for an infectious respiratory disease (CIRD) complex. Even though the symptoms are similar, the term paints a picture different from a common cold, doesn’t it?
The underlying infection behind kennel cough can be bacteria, viruses, or a combination of both. Some of these microorganisms are more commonly involved–that’s the ones included in the kennel cough vaccine.
The infection leads to inflammation which results in the typical symptom–coughing.
Kupo starts coughing
Kupo was 6 months old. He started with a little cough about a week after he received his kennel cough vaccination. The veterinarian diagnosed Kupo’s coughing as kennel cough.
Kupo’s parents thought it was strange that Kupo would get the infection after he was already vaccinated. However, the whole thing is not as simple than that.
Most of the time, the treatment for kennel cough consists of patience and TLC. Some dogs, however, need medications that control inflammation and coughing. Antibiotics sometimes help shorten the course of the disease.
Kupo’s infection seemed mild
Kupo should have improved within a week or so. Instead, a week and a half later, Kupo was still coughing and getting worse rather than better.
Kupo’s parents took him back to a veterinarian.
The veterinarian assured them nothing weird was happening and gave them medication to help.
In two weeks, Kupo finished his medication but continued to get worse. It’s been now a whole month since the cough first started. His parents were worried, and no longer buying that kennel cough was all that was going on.
Kupo was not improving
After doing some research, they learned about other, scary respiratory problems. They returned to the vet, and brought up their concerns.
The veterinarian tried to prescribe different medication but Kupo’s parents insisted on x-rays. The x-rays didn’t show anything abnormal.
While that was a relief, it also failed to explain why Kupo’s cough was not resolving. His parents agreed to try the new medication for additional two weeks.
Kupo continued to get worse
There is nothing more frustrating than things going downhill in spite of repeat veterinary visits and treatments. Kupo was now having a really hard time, coughing up large amounts of phlegm and his quality of life was poor.
Its been a month and a half since Kupo started coughing. The veterinarian offered yet another, different prescription to try.
Would you continue trying different prescriptions? Would you seek a second opinion? What would you do if it was your dog?
Read Kupo’s story here.
Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog: Coughing
Kennel Cough (Infectious Tracheobronchitis) in Dogs