A Dundee man is encouraging others to be alert after his dog contracted suspected kennel cough.
David Rogers fears there has been a local outbreak of the illness after pet Woolfie fell ill.
Kennel cough, also known as canine infectious tracheobronchitis, is an airborne respiratory infection affecting dogs.
Outbreaks of the disease have been reported recently in England, and David is now warning others to take care after Woolfie became infected following visits to the beaches at Broughty Ferry and Monifieth.
He said: “I started notice it on Monday morning, Woolfie was ‘reverse sneezing’ and not feeling very well.
“At first he was quite panicked and confused but he seems to have calmed down a bit.
“I think he’ll be fine, usually it clears up after a while but in older dogs or puppies – ones with weaker immune symptoms – it can be fatal.
“He’s had the general set of symptoms, vomiting, a bit uncomfortable and lethargic.”
The 47-year-old added: “I just want to make everyone with a dog aware that there has been a bit of a neighbourhood outbreak.
“It is airborne, it’s like Covid for dogs, and I’d say that the best thing to do is – if you can – stop your dogs from socialising with others.”
What is kennel cough?
According to the PDSA, kennel cough is an airway infection that causes a nasty cough in dogs.
It is most common in areas where lots of dogs gather and is spread in the air and on surfaces.
The charity warns dogs with kennel cough should be kept away from other pets and public spaces while ill, and for two to three weeks afterwards.
Symptoms and treatment
Symptoms usually take between three and 14 days to develop, and then last for one to three weeks.
Most dogs develop a hacking cough and stay generally well, but puppies, older dogs, and poorly dogs can develop more serious symptoms, including a high temperature or reduced appetite and even pneumonia.
The illness can be treated at home with most cases without any medication.
However, pets that become seriously unwell can receive antibiotics or anti-inflammatories. There is also a vaccine for the illness.