In the winter, there’s a human cold and flu season. But what about our for our furry friends? Can dogs get colds too? And if so, how should owners take care of them, and what about spreading viruses from one pet to another.
Can dogs get colds?
Some people might think that dogs spread the common cold, but they actually can’t. Dogs are more prone to an upper respiratory infection known as kennel cough, which is equivalent to human colds. Dogs are prone to catching kennel cough any time of the year, unlike humans who have designated seasons for that.
Dr. Kangas explains explained, “Kennel cough is viral, but it’s what we call a respiratory complex. The main organism that causes it is a bacteria called Bordetella, and it’s often combined with viral organisms, and that’s what’s produces the symptoms. So, for dogs, it doesn’t really mimic the seasonal thing so much because classically viral organisms will be more virulent in those winter seasons and that’s not necessarily the case for dogs because they have that bacterial component.”
Causes of kennel cough
Just like humans, your dog is at risk of catching kennel cough if they are exposed to other dogs who have it. Crowded and poorly ventilated places such as dog shelters are at high-risk for contamination, but even seemingly safe environments can put your pup at risk as well.
“As far as breeds go, the one thing I would say is that certain brachycephalic breeds—bulldogs, Shih Tzus, pugs, etc.—which are canines with the pushed-in faces, are going to have less resilience in their airways than a dog with a classic-shaped skull. They have more airway problems anyway so if they got an upper respiratory infection, they would be more likely to get sicker with it. Exposure risk is no different, but they’re likely to be more symptomatic.” Dr. Kangas elaborated.
Kennel cough symptoms
If your dog starts to sneeze a bit, don’t be concerned because it’s just Kennel Cough. The illness will go away on its own after about three weeks and there is no need for panic. Here are some of its signs and symptoms:
-a strong cough (often accompanied by a “honking” sound according to the American Kennel Club).
-loss of appetite
4 Ways to help your pup fight off kennel cough
1. Support the immune system.
Super Pet Nutrition’s Colostrum-LD Powder is a great way to ensure your pet stays healthy and happy. “Colostrum is actually a win-win because it also supports gut health. It’s made from the first milk that comes out when a baby is born, so it’s rich in antibodies and immunoglobulins which all support the immune system,” Dr. Kangas explained.
2. Feeding your pets the best food possible
Processed kibble is more convenient, but it’s also devoid of many nutrients. Choose dehydrated or freeze-dried dog foods to get more nutrients that will sustain the overall health of your pup.
3. Consider herbal supplements for your dogs.
The best way to keep your dog’s throat healthy is by using a natural supplement like Pet Wellbeing’s Throat Gold for Dogs. All you need is some rest and the right remedy with this product as it will help soothe irritation in their throats while also calming them down enough that can fight off infection naturally.
4. Get your dog vaccinated.
If your dog is in constant contact with other dogs, whether that’s at the park or during show times then talk to their vet about getting them vaccinated for Bordetella.
You can’t go wrong with a sweater for your pup. Pups in sweaters and thermal wear are sure to be cozy this winter.
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