BOZEMAN – In the past month, Double Diamond Veterinary Hospital has seen 20-30 dogs come through the door with highly contagious kennel cough.
Kennel cough is a respiratory disease caused by the spread of bacteria from one dog to another. Double Diamond Veterinarian Sue Geski said some common signs are a cough, runny nose, and even a slight fever.
“Most of them it is a pretty minor condition, but it is annoying because they are coughing, but it is minor. It is not a fatal thing,” said Geski.
Geski said recently she will see four dogs in a day who have kennel cough symptoms. The reason for the uptick of kennel cough reports is a result of the disease being highly contagious and dogs’ social nature.
“Most dogs are going with their owners to dog parks,” said Geski. “They are doing nose to nose interaction, mouth to mouth, they are coughing on each other or they are playing with each other and they are transmitting in many cases a bacterium or even a virus that might be the cause of coughing.”
Geski advises owners to take their dog to the vet if the coughing is causing the dog to vomit. However, she said most dogs will be able to recover by resting and staying away from other dogs.
“It is hard to completely isolate your own dog, but at least in the active coughing period it is nice to not pass it on to your friends’ dogs. So that would be what I would suggest,” said Geski.
During these times, Geski said the best prevention is for owners and dogs to stay away from crowded areas like dog parks.
Reporting by Mederios Babb for MTN News