Protecting Pets from Kennel Cough

Coughing. Hacking. Sneezing. Runny noses. We all know that cold season is upon us, so many of us take steps to keep the sniffles at bay. We may wash our hands more often, give a wide berth to anyone who sneezes, and take supplements to give our immune systems an advantage over attacking viruses.  But did you know your pooches need help to ward off their own colds?

Colds in dogs are commonly referred to as “kennel cough” or “infectious tracheobronchitis.” These terms describe a variety of highly contagious respiratory infections. Krista, a member of The Grand Pet Resort and Salon’s Guest Services team, knows a lot about keeping The Grand Guests safe from this condition. “It’s important that our Guests have a fun and healthy stay with us,” Krista says. Fun is easy to achieve at The Grand, since Krista can offer Guests activities such as play dates, pool time, and personal displays of affection.

Keeping Guests healthy at The Grand takes a bit more work. “We always make sure our environment is clean, and that our Guests’ medical needs are met,” Krista says. “A Guest who doesn’t act normally or shows symptoms of illness is taken to Hulen Hills Animal Hospital so that a veterinarian can examine and, if needed, treat them.” Yet, all this hard work isn’t enough to prevent a pup from catching kennel cough.

The most effective way to prevent kennel cough is to keep the environment free from the pathogens which cause kennel cough by ensuring guests are vaccinated.  “A regularly vaccinated pet is at a much lower risk of contracting kennel cough, so we require that all of our Guests are vaccinated for their stay,” Krista explains. The specific vaccine that protects dogs from kennel cough is Bordetella.

Following this recommendation, all pooches staying at The Grand must receive the Bordetella vaccine once every six months, in addition to a number of other vaccines that are required each year.

Like the human cold, kennel cough can be spread through the air. An infected pup will shed the infection-causing pathogens by coughing or sneezing. The bacteria and viruses become aerosolized, like the tiny bit of oil in cooking spray. Any nearby pooches can catch the same illness simply by breathing in the germs. 

If your pup shows symptoms of kennel cough at home—such as coughing, sneezing, and runny nose or eyes—it’s best to let them rest away from other pets until you can schedule an appointment with your veterinarian.

Krista and the rest of the Guest Services team will ensure every Guest checking in for an overnight stay at The Grand has gotten these shots. She is also able to offer a convenient service if a Guest hasn’t had the vaccinations required. She can arrange for pets to visit Hulen Hills Animal Hospital, which is located right next door, and the medical staff there will update the vaccines that are due.

Krista finds all of her hard work to keep The Grand Guest’s happy and healthy very rewarding. “My favorite part of the day is when pet parents come to pick up their babies after boarding with us,” Krista says. “Seeing their faces when they pick up their babies who got great care while they were here reassures us that we are all doing a great job! We hate to see our babies go, but look forward to them coming back!”

If you have any questions about The Grand Pet Resort and Spa or our vaccine requirements, feel free to contact us at (817) 989-PAWS.