Kimberly’s Pet Taxi would like to advise people to be aware of the Kennel cough epidemic.A new strain is out there be very careful with your dogs around Hobart as there is a new strain and even if your dogs have been vaccinated they can still get this New strain.Pet sitters can come to your home and house and pet sit your pets is a safer insurance you will not end up with a Big Vet bill.please read onI supplied an article by Briony Kidd.
23 November, 2010 10:54AM AEDT
Sick as a dog…A few things you should know about kennel cough
By Briony Kidd
Vets say kennel cough is more prevalent than usual at the moment and owners should be vigilant. Even vaccinated dogs are at risk …
If you notice your dog honking loudly like a goose, making choking sounds, gagging or even coughing up fluid, pay attention.
It’s possible your dog has kennel cough.
Vets around Hobart are saying that they’re seeing more of it than usual at the moment, with one pointing to the Errol Flynn Reserve in Sandy Bay as the source of a number of cases.
“You tend to take your dog to places where there’s a lot of other dogs and it just goes through them very quickly. It’s definitely around,” explains Cheryl, who works as a vet nurse in the area.
“The owner doesn’t realises the dog has it until it starts coughing and by then its already been mingling.”
Kennel cough (or canine cough) is a highly contagious condition that can spread rapidly when dogs congregate, hence the name. It is characterised by inflammation of the upper respiratory system, sometimes with a fever.
It is either the result of a bacterial infection or has a viral cause and, in rare cases, it can progress to pneumonia. All forms of the condition are spread through the air and by contact with contaminated surfaces.
Symptoms usually begin three to five days after exposure.
Many dog owners are unaware that dogs can be affected by kennel cough even if vaccinated against it.
Ruth, a regular visitor to the Errol Flynn Reserve with her teenage daughter and her dog, Indy, says she hasn’t given kennel cough much thought and didn’t know about the current outbreak.
“I’m not sure how I could know, unless it’s on a database or something like that, or unless a dog has a little red thing that says, ‘I’ve been vaccinated.’
“But I’d like to know more about how they can still have it if they’ve been vaccinated. It is a bit of a worry.”
Zoe, a nurse who works at a city veterinary practice, says, “Our vets here do mention that we only vaccinate for the main types.”
Vaccination is still the best safeguard: a dog may still contract kennel cough but it’s likely to be a less aggressive form and more easily treated.
Jan, another regular at the dog beach with her dog Louis, says she didn’t know there was any risk of him being affected: “I was quite confident because my dog has been vaccinated.”
So would she think twice about Louis’s outings at the dog park, knowing the risk?
“Well, I guess as we’ve been coming in this infection period I’ll keep bringing him. He does have a strong friendship group here and can’t get through a day without coming here,” she explains, laughing a little. “He comes here almost every day. He also goes to Nutgrove in the mornings and loves the social life and the exercise.”
Along with his ‘best friends’, Bailey, Finn and Harry, Louis enjoys a run around and a bit of a swim.
Jan pauses, considering: “But maybe, if I think about it, I could change my mind [about coming here] for a couple of weeks just to be safe, or certainly consult my vet.”
Sophie, another regular at the Errol Flynn Reserve, is equally concerned. She’s not sure if her dog is vaccinated or not: “I’m thinking I’ve heard her cough occasionally, but I’m sure everybody does occasionally.
“I’ll just keep a good eye on her.”
Vet nurse Zoe says the outbreak is being properly handled: “I haven’t seen a really serious case … so I think everyone’s keeping it nice and under control, but if it’s left untreated it can be more serious.”
Vets advise keeping an infected dog away from other dogs until the illness has run its course.
Some clinics ask that owners keep their dog in the car while waiting for their appointment, for instance, instead of letting him or her mingle with other dogs in the waiting room.
Treatment involves a course of antibiotics and cough mixture, with herbal tonics sometimes also recommended.
If you’re concerned about your dog’s health or have queries about kennel cough, consult your vet.
If you prefer to leave your dogs at home whilst on Holidays as to avoid infection call Kimberly’s (my service) and we can set you up with a house sitter or pet sitter.
This information I thought may help some dog owners out there
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