All About Basset Hounds
If you want a dog that will enjoy watching a movie marathon with you, but also join you for walks outside, then a Basset Hound may be the right choice.
Can dogs get upper respiratory infections?
Yes, dogs can come down with this illness, which looks a lot like the common cold in humans.
An upper respiratory infection is an ailment that can affect the lungs, air passages, throat, and nasal cavities. It’s often caused by bacteria or a virus, and it’s highly contagious. Fortunately, it’s typically not life-threatening unless it leads to complications like pneumonia.
Any dog can contract an upper respiratory infection, but puppies, older dogs, and dogs with health issues are at greater risk. Dogs with short muzzles, such as Bulldogs and Pugs, are also prone to respiratory issues.
The signs of upper respiratory infections in dogs look a lot like those of a human cold. For instance, dogs with this illness may experience:
Dogs with an upper respiratory infection may also lose their appetite, which can lead to weight loss. Additionally, you might notice behavioral changes in your dog, such as sleeping more than usual or a lack of energy. Your typically energetic dog might be reluctant to go for walks or play their favorite games.
If your dog has an upper respiratory infection, you should consult with your veterinarian. They can help identify the cause of the infection and determine the appropriate treatment.
While some upper respiratory infections resolve on their own, others may require medication to treat the underlying cause. For instance, if the illness is due to a bacterial infection, the dog will need a course of antibiotics. If it’s caused by parasites, your veterinarian will likely prescribe a deworming product to clear the infestation.
Your veterinarian may also recommend medication to help reduce pain and fever along with nasal drops or spray to alleviate a runny nose or congestion. In addition, they can offer advice on how to care for your dog at home. In severe cases, intravenous (IV) fluid therapy and hospitalization might be necessary to stabilize the dog.
Generally, an upper respiratory infection can last anywhere from 5 to 10 days if there are no complications. If the dog is severely dehydrated or ends up with pneumonia, it can take longer for the ailing pooch to recover.
Keep in mind that there can be an incubation period of 2 to 10 days before symptoms appear. This means your dog can spread the infection to other dogs even before you know they are sick.
Upper respiratory infections in dogs are caused by bacterial, viral, or parasitic infections that affect the lungs and airways.
Bordetella bronchiseptica is one of the more common bacterial causes of upper respiratory infections in dogs. Dogs with Bordetella have a distinctive dry honking cough. This condition is also known as Kennel Cough because it crops up and spreads quickly in kennels where dogs are in close quarters.
The Bordetella vaccine can protect dogs against this infection. It’s recommended for dogs to spend time around other canines, whether in kennels, boarding facilities, doggy daycare, or dog parks. Talk to your veterinarian to find out if your dog should receive this vaccine.
Parainfluenza is one of the top viral causes of upper respiratory infections in dogs. Other viruses that can lead to this illness include Adeno Type II, Canine Influenza Virus (CIV), and Distemper. The Distemper or DA2PP vaccine is generally recommended for all dogs to keep them safe from these viruses.
Certain parasites can lead to upper respiratory infections in dogs. Canine nasal mites are one such culprit. They can cause symptoms including reverse sneezing where dogs sniff air quickly inward, snorting, difficulty breathing, and nasal discharge.
There are some zoonotic diseases that can be passed from dogs to people, such as rabies, ringworm, and tick-borne infections. However, you don’t have to worry about catching your dog’s upper respiratory infection.
Although the symptoms of a dog respiratory infection and the human cold are similar, they are caused by different kinds of viruses and bacteria. The types that lead to this illness in dogs won’t make us sick—and the ones that give us a cold won’t make your dog ill either
That means it’s generally safe for you to handle your dog when they have an upper respiratory infection. Just remember that you can spread the illness to other dogs in the house. Take steps to avoid spreading the illness, such as wearing gloves and washing your hands after handling your sick dog.
There are things you can do to help your dog recover from an upper respiratory infection and keep other dogs from getting sick:
If you have a pet insurance plan that covers illnesses, you can get reimbursed for veterinary care related to an upper respiratory infection. This can include costs for diagnosing your dog as well as medications, fluid therapy, hospitalization, and other treatments needed to help them recover. Dig into the benefits of pet insurance.
The information presented in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute or substitute for the advice of your veterinarian.