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Kennel cough is a highly contagious respiratory infection that can affect dogs. If your dog has been diagnosed with kennel cough, you may be wondering what you can do to help alleviate their symptoms and get them back to their happy, healthy self. In this article, we’ll discuss some home remedies that can help soothe your dog’s throat and reduce the coughing associated with kennel cough.
What is Kennel Cough?
Kennel cough, also known as canine infectious respiratory disease or tracheobronchitis, is a respiratory infection that affects dogs. It is caused by bacteria, most commonly Bordetella bronchiseptica. Other causes include canine adenovirus, parainfluenza virus, mycoplasma, and other bacteria. The infection is highly contagious and can be transmitted through airborne droplets when an infected dog coughs or sneezes.
Dogs that are in close proximity to each other, such as in kennels, shelters, or dog parks, are at a higher risk of contracting kennel cough. Additionally, dogs with weakened immune systems, such as puppies, older dogs, or dogs with heart disease, are more susceptible to the infection.
Symptoms of Kennel Cough
The most common symptom of kennel cough is a dry, hacking cough. It may sound like your dog is trying to clear their throat or gagging. Some dogs may also experience nasal discharge, runny eyes, and breathing difficulties. In severe cases, dogs may even retch and cough up white foam.
It is important to note that not all dogs with kennel cough will exhibit all of these symptoms. Some dogs may only have a mild cough or no symptoms at all. If you suspect that your dog has kennel cough, it is important to take them to the vet for a proper diagnosis and treatment.
Seeking Veterinary Care
While home remedies can help alleviate the symptoms of kennel cough, it is important to seek veterinary care if your dog’s symptoms persist or worsen. Your veterinarian will be able to provide a proper diagnosis and recommend appropriate treatment options for your dog.
Home Remedies for Kennel Cough
If your dog has been diagnosed with kennel cough, there are several home remedies you can try to help alleviate their symptoms. It is important to note that these remedies are not a substitute for proper veterinary care, but they can help make your dog more comfortable as they recover.
1. Honey for Soothing the Throat
Honey is a natural cough suppressant that can help soothe your dog’s throat. It has antibacterial properties and can help reduce inflammation. You can mix a teaspoon of honey into your dog’s food or water to help ease their cough. However, it is important to note that honey should not be given to puppies under one year of age.
2. Chicken Broth for Hydration and Immune Support
Chicken broth is a great way to keep your dog hydrated and provide them with nutrients that can help boost their immune system. You can make your own chicken broth by boiling chicken bones and vegetables in water, or you can buy pre-made chicken broth from the store. Be sure to let the broth cool before giving it to your dog.
3. Steam Treatment for Loosening Mucus
A steam treatment can help ease your dog’s cough by loosening mucus in their throat. You can create a steam treatment by running a hot shower and bringing your dog into the bathroom for 10-15 minutes. The steam will help open up their airways and make it easier for them to breathe. Alternatively, you can use a humidifier in your dog’s room to provide them with a constant source of steam.
4. Vitamin C for Boosting the Immune System
Vitamin C can help boost your dog’s immune system and aid in fighting off the infection causing their kennel cough. You can give your dog vitamin C supplements or feed them foods high in vitamin C, such as oranges, blueberries, and broccoli. However, it is important to consult with your veterinarian before giving your dog any new supplements.
5. Rest for Recovery
Rest is crucial for your dog’s recovery from kennel cough. Make sure they have a comfortable place to sleep and limit their physical activity until their symptoms improve. This will help prevent further irritation to their throat and allow their body to focus on fighting off the infection.
Remember to always consult with your veterinarian before trying any home remedies for your dog’s kennel cough. They will be able to provide you with the best advice and treatment options for your dog’s specific situation.
In conclusion, kennel cough is a common respiratory infection that affects dogs. Honey can be used as a home remedy to help soothe your dog’s throat and reduce their coughing. However, it is important to seek veterinary care if your dog’s symptoms persist or worsen.