- Pet forum for dogs cats and humans 


Potential dog adoption, has kennel cough...

March 18th, 2008, 11:21 PM
My friends recently adopted a 3 yr old bassett hound who is an amazingly good dog. They don't seem to have prepared themselves for a bassett adoption, and are finding they can't keep him. He was a pound dog, and I'm amazed at what a wonderful dog he is. Some potty training issues, and he's mouthy when he gets excited and wants to play, but he's a really good dog.

They've asked us to take him, and I really want to, but the dog has kennel cough and conjunctivitis. We have an elderly brittany (13 years old) at home with congestive heart failure. I'm very afraid to expose him to the kennel cough. Our brit is not current on his kennel cough vaccine because we he hasn't been off our property much.

Does anyone know how contagious kennel cough is? If I got my brit vaccinated now, could they be together? We lost our 13 yr old sheltie last month and I'm not ready to lose another dog - but I would hate to see this beautiful boy go back to the pound over training/breed issues!


March 19th, 2008, 07:54 AM
you're heart is certainly in the right place! but kennel cough is VERY contagious, and (although I'm NOT a vet) I wouldn't expose your elderly brit to it right now. You should call your vet and inquire about vaccinating your Brittany at her age/condition. it may be ok to do, but the vaccine may also be too much for an elderly sick dog to handle. also realize that the vaccine doesn't cover ALL strands of Kennel cough.

If you take this new dog into your home, you should keep the dogs separated for about 2wks. The basset will need to start, and complete a full round of, antibiotics for the kennel cough, and the vet will most likely prescribe an opthalmic ointment for the conjunctivitis (my dog got both when he was a pup). the dogs should have NO CONTACT at all if you chose to take the basset into your home.

I am surprised though, most shelters/rescues have a clause in the adoption contract that if for some reason the adoptive family cannot keep the dog, the dog MUST be returned to the shelter/rescue. you should look into this before taking the dog to your home.

March 19th, 2008, 01:01 PM
Agree with Jessi - and also, if you are able to directly adopt the dog from your friends, would they be willing to keep him until the KC has run its course? I would certainly make sure the pup sees the vet and has the meds. My dog had KC last June despite his vaccination against it but it lasted only 2 days - apparently it runs its course faster if dog has been vaccinated - there are just so many strains of it one shot can't cover all of them. My guy just needed a cough suppressant. Although many years ago we have a horrible case with our Beagle before meds were available. Not everyone is able to handle a Bassett and if you can that would be wonderful. Definitely speak with your vet about the pros and cons - maybe the Bassett could even stay at vets in quarantine of course while still contagious - that is the sticky point, when dog came down with it. Our first dog was adopted with KC which didn't show up until day 3.

March 19th, 2008, 02:17 PM
I doubt the vet is an option for boarding the dog, though, if it has KC. Since our vet is 40 miles from here, but close to where hubby works, if we need something routine done for a dog, we'll board them there for the day so the vet can do whatever is needed. I can assure you that other dogs at the vet in question can and do catch KC--our dogs have, on occasion, picked up KC during the few short hours they're boarded there, just from a patient coming in! And when our dog comes home, the other 7 are exposed as well. :rolleyes:

KC is very contagious. Sometimes it gets bad enough to require cough supressant and antibiotics; sometimes it resolves on its own. But if your older dog is in ill-health, I wouldn't risk bringing the basset home until it is no longer contagious. Even keeping them isolated in separate rooms won't guarantee that the older dog won't get it--I think the germs can hitch a ride on cloth.

The vaccination only works for a few of the strains of KC--KC has as many causes as the human cold--and there isn't a lot of cross-protection. Plus, even if you vaccinated your older dog right away and the vaccine was effective against the KC the basset has, it would likely take at least two weeks for the immune system to rev up for proper protection.

Conjunctivitis is highly contagious, too...

Is it possible for your friends to keep the basset until his health issues are resolved? Under a vet's care, it shouldn't be more than a couple of weeks before he can get a clean bill of health. :fingerscr

March 19th, 2008, 08:11 PM
Kennel cough is highly contagious and when one dog in a kennel gets it most of the others will also. A while back I fostered a dog for a few days. He had no symptoms of kennel cough, at least none that I noticed. I transferred him to another foster home and was told that he developed KC shortly after getting there. Neither of my dogs came down with it but they are younger. There has been at least one other occasion where they were both exposed to it and didn't come down with it so I have been fortunate. I haven't had them vaccinated for it yet but should.
I do not think it would be a good idea at this time to bring the bassett into your house while you have an older dog. Kennel cough in itself is not dangerous however the infection that can develop afterwards can be.
Can the owners keep him until he is over the kennel cough or at least past the contagious period?

By the way, I love Bassetts and have always wanted one. Recently I read that they are very difficult to house train.