Help! My Dog Has Kennel Cough

‘At A Glance (Details Below)’ Essential Facts

What Is Kennel Cough?

  1. A persistent infection of the throat with a bacteria and a virus.
  2. Causes a dry, repetitive, choking cough and fever.
  3. Mild cases often have sneezing, runny eyes and noses.
  4. Highly contagious wherever dogs meet. Incubation is usually 7 days.

Now dive deeper.

Recently we saw a 9 week old puppy who came from the breeder 7 days earlier. The day before we saw her she had started coughing, and by that night it had become very bad. Being a Boxer puppy, she wasn’t letting it get her down but you could see she wasn’t her normal self.

She has kennel cough. She hasn’t been around other dogs so where did she get it from?

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Why do dogs chase their tail?

polar bear

Have you ever had this zoo experience? It takes a careful and patient observer. You’re enjoying watching an animal moving around their exhibit (after all, many animals are asleep or aren’t even visible) when suddenly you realise “hang on, this animal is doing exactly the same thing over and over again”?

This is stereotypic behaviour and it’s the bane of every zoo. Here’s the polar bear at Seaworld on the Gold Coast in 2007 who would do this for hours on end.

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Myth 29: The runt of the litter

puppy choice

Runt. What a powerful word. It instantly brings to mind images of poor, sickly puppies destined to never be as healthy as their brothers and sisters.

What if the whole idea of the runt of the litter is a myth?  Well that’s what I think, anyway. My 20 years tell me you can take home the smaller puppies without having poorer health, as long as you follow a few basic rules…

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Poisoning in a puppy. Yes, the vet’s puppy.

sick puppy

Just to to prove it happens to us all, here is Loki’s recent health emergency and some advice on how to identify and avoid pet poisons.
Four days ago Andrew’s 9 week Jack Russell Terrier was doing his usual morning routine of running around the garden seeing what could be destroyed or eaten. He was of course under supervision but all the same was darting in and out of sight among the bushes. All seemed fine but only ten minutes later he suddenly looked extremely unwell, vomited and passed diarrhoea. It was obvious something was terribly wrong so he was immediately rushed to the surgery.

Continue reading “Poisoning in a puppy. Yes, the vet’s puppy.”

How Can We Reduce Puppy Farming?

Update 2017: new dog & cat laws in South Australia are just around the corner. Also read about our help in successfully prosecuting a puppy farmer.

While there are many good breeders we encourage new puppy owners to be aware of where their puppy has come from. Until we have effective legislation, this is the only way we can help to reduce unethical breeding. With that in mind we have formulated a list of questions new puppy owners should ask before purchasing a pup.

  • Have the puppies had a full veterinary health examination and their first vaccination
  • Have the breeding dogs and puppies been given the same veterinary care expected for all pets?.
  • Have the breeding females been bred only between the ages of one and six years, and only at every second season?
  • Have the adult dogs been exercised every day or are they confined continuously?

And of course, PLEASE call us for our health advice before choosing a breed? It is also worth finding out about the common breed-related health conditions and what breeders should be testing for.

By Andrew Spanner BVSc(Hons) MVetStud, a vet in Adelaide, Australia. These blogs are from a series regularly posted on email and Twitter. Subscribe via email here to never miss a story!
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