Key points in this video:
- coughing in cats is unusual and general a serious problem
- The phrase "kennel cough" is incorrect and it is more correctly called "Canine Cough"- they don't need to be in kennels to get it
- Canine cough is a highly contagious cough that is often picked up at home or in dog parks.
- Other common causes of coughing in dogs include chronic bronchitis, hart failure and collapsing trachea
- Coughing in cats is mostly caused by feline asthma/ allergic bronchitis
- Coughing in cats is often mistaken for hairballs
hey everyone welcome to ask the vet here at companion animal vets in Dapto. Oh I'm Melissa and today we're talking about cooughing. So cooughing... we're seeing quite a lot of dogs with coughing at the moment in the last couple of weeks and many of them have coughing for different reasons so I thought talking about coughing today cats I'll mention as well cats don't cough very often so in general if a cat is coughing then it's something that's needs to be looked at so in general cats don't cough very much at all so if you are hearing any coughing in a cat that's probably something that needs to be looked at but we'll talk about cats a bit after the dogs so what I'm going to talk about today is we've had a few people mentioned that they've heard that kennel cough is around we call it canine cough rather than kennel cough because it's a disease that doesn't just happen in kennels so what canine cough is canine cough is a highly contagious cough that's caused by a number of different bugs it's not just one virus or one bacteria it's multiple bacteria and viruses that can call this causes group called canine cough and one of these is a highly highly contagious cough that means that if one dog coughs and the other one is another dog's nearby they're very very likely to come down with symptoms the other thing is is these viruses and bacteria can actually live for a period of time in their environment so we've now with dog parks and places where lots of dogs congregate hopefully if your dog was coughing you don't take them to those places but if they do if they cough they can leave behind the bugs and viruses on surfaces they can live for a couple of weeks and then if your dog comes by and walks around and sits there and then licks themselves there's a chance they can catch the disease in that way it's very very very unlikely to be a fatal disease unlike some of our other nasty viruses but it's highly contagious and when an animal has canine cough in it and alone a contagious cough then it's it's quite violent so what happens is is they cough and cough and cough and cough and cough and cough and cough and they don't really stop they cough and cough any sort of pressure on their on their windpipe any sort of thing on their leave touching eating drinking anything that irritates their throat they coughing the coughing take off the neck off and so they go from not coughing it all to suddenly coughing almost all the time and those dogs often have an infection the thing is we vaccinate against canine cough it's one of the things we can vaccinate against but respiratory vaccines just like in people they're not perfect and because there's lots of different bugs that can cause these canine cough this canine cough group that the vaccines don't always work 100% but if your dog is vaccinated against the two bugs we vaccinate against which is parainfluenza and Bordetella then if they do catch canine cough they generally don't get as bad symptoms so they don't cough as much and it doesn't last as long they're able to get over it a bit more quickly that's why vaccination is too important even if you don't go to kennels but you go anywhere where lots of dogs congregate because they can transmit it so that's a that's an infectious cough that's a cough that happens something so young dog old dog doesn't matter totally normal in something starts coughing off and they go off their food as well they're pretty unhappy and so those dogs obviously need to be seen at the vet clinic they need to be looked at they may need medication and they need to be checked out and don't ever be offended if you ring up and say that your dogs coughing in our clinic our nurses will ask you to stay in the car park until your consult is ready to be done so that we're not bringing potentially infectious animals into our waiting room because that's the last thing we want to do and either the vet will come out to the car park and see your pet in the car park or in the car and then decide whether they're able to come into the clinic or not, or we'll see them outside so that we're not transmitting the bugs around into our clinic as well or to any other animals that are in hospital because obviously we also need to protect our animals that are in the clinic actually in the hospital the sick ones as well so don't never be offended if that's the case it's just with coughing our receptionists are trained to keep those animals out of the practice so that's a sudden cough feeling unwell often young animals out and about or if they're not vaccinated against canine cough. Do we have a question? We have a question no problem if I have a cold can my dog catch it? very very unlikely cold viruses can to be very very species specific it's a great question and we get asked it all the time but they're generally fairly species specific so it's unlikely if it's a contagious cough or a contagious thing like a cold in a human being then it's very very rare with that transmitted between species but I guess you can say never say never because that's how some cold viruses are transmitted from birds to people and all that sort of stuff but yeah I've never even heard of it happening with a dog and a human being so it's a great question that when lots of people ask it all the time so but highly contagious within all species that canine cough group so within dogs very very contagious so the other forms of cough we've turned to worry about so dogs coffee every now and then naturally like to us we have a bit of a cough to get over it that's nothing to worry about but if you're really icing that you're hearing your dog cough fairly consistently that means every day or every couple of days you're hearing in a copy of coughing episode then that probably means that's not normal if you have a young dog that's coughing like that that's definitely not normal if you have an older dog then we start to worry about other causes of coughing so we have some chronic forms of coughing which are allergic type coughs which is called allergic bronchitis and that can have all the dogs and it tends to be a dry cough that tends to happen during the day or when again when they're drinking water or eating and they start to cough at sort of intermittent times during the day less likely to be having coughing at night it tends to be a daytime cough but it can't they sometimes can cough at night in the older dogs that are over their age of eight or nine with coughing we start to get very concerned about other diseases like heart disease or heart failure coughing from heart failure we tend to see as a night time cough so it's that sort of quiet sort of you know gentle cough that's more fluidy sounding and it tends to happen overnight, don't laugh at me Emily! I'll start doing some other demonstrations of cooughing do you want me to yeah I'll get there so it tends to be a nighttime cough or what we call exercise intolerance coughing so it's when they're excited they coughed when they get excited and their heart rates go high or they cough when they've been running or exercising and their heart rates gone up because of that so that denser when we start to worry about heart disease or heart failure so that again should have a checkup we also see some nasty coughs in little dogs that can have what we call a collapsing trachea so the trachea is your windpipe so it goes down from your throat down into your lungs and we have a few different breeds of dogs particularly smaller dogs that can have this problem alot of collapsing trachea it can either be the initial or primary cause of the problem or it can happen after chronic coughing has happened for a long period of time and that's where we start to worry about dogs that are coughing for a long period of time because they can lead to other problems so I can start with one problem change to something else and that's what a goose honk off and Emily's going to laugh even louder at the moment because I'm going to try and demonstrate it but it seriously it has a very particular sound and it's a real huh sort of sound it's got the vocalization with it so it sounds we call it a goose honk off and if you're hearing that sound in your pet then again it's a really important thing to be checked out but because chronic cough actually leads to cough so if your dog costs for a long period of time no matter what the cause are no it was often we can never get rid of that cough completely because of the damage that's been caused by the coughing that's happened before him so I guess the take home message today is if you're hearing coughing then probably have a checkup it's not normal it may be something we can either treat and cure like a like a I'm ok I'm cough that's gonna go away completely or it may be something that we need to work out a form of control to help it prevent causing more problems in the future or it could be heart failure which we really need to get on top of and we can prolong life dramatically with medications and things even without early on many many cases so that's coughing in dogs coughing in cats as I said coughing is very rare in cats if cats are coughing there is generally an underlying disease they also have allergic bronchitis it used to be called feline asthma so cats that allergic form of bronchitis is actually probably the most common cause of coughing people often think coughing is furball it's something that I get told every all the time you know he's just got a furball coughing actually isn't furball if you've got a furball and they're trying to vomit it up then now gag they'll do that and bring up a furball if they're coughing that is not a firm or coughing comes from the respiratory system not from the stomach so if your dog if your cat is actually coughing then that's not that's not furball that is something else going on so if they're coughing it's very abnormal cats get less coughing from heart disease not really a problem with coughing in cats heart disease causes other problems they get fluid around their lung so we get breathing problems rather than coughing problems so bronchitis is the most common we can also get some lung lung roaming cats in in Sydney and around these areas so that can cause coughing as well so if you're seeing coffee in a cat then it's really important that they get checked out because there is generally something going on it's not just something that they do every now then you know dogs sometimes they too quickly or they drink too quickly and they'll have a bit of a cough we don't worry about that so much being cats pretty rare for it to be a normal thing to happen so that's all about coughing today I hope that's been helpful and if you think of anything you want me to talk about send us a message on Facebook or if you have any questions about coughing give us a call or a message on Facebook thanks see you later