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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 28573
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience.
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our 2 Labradors seem perfectly healthy but in the morning when

Customer Question

our 2 Labradors seem perfectly healthy but in the morning when they move they sneeze and have the snuffles, we have taken them to the vets and they have had a course of anti-biotics but this was a few weeks ago they seem improved but the symptons wont completely go. This is obviously contagious as I have had other dogs which have had the same symptons.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.
Aloha! You're speaking to Dr. Michael Salkin
I'm sorry that your question wasn't answered in a timely manner. Would you clarify, please, if your Labs are symptomatic only in the morning? If so, an allergic rhinitis needs to be considered because many pollens are higher at that time of day.

Persistent infectious rhinitis occurring simultaneously in two pets is uncommon. The most common of the infections - infectious tracheobronchitis (Bordetella bronchiseptica/parainfluenza virus) usually remisses unaided within a few weeks and to have two pets with resistent infection isn't expected.

We can perform a respiratory PCR (a DNA-based) diagnostic panel to see if infectious agents are, indeed, present in your dogs but I'd like to hear from you first about the timing of their sneezing and snuffles, please.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hello,

The symptoms are more noticeable in the mornings, but they are shown at other times during the day, really just the odd sneeze or sniff, nothing much.

I think the symptoms are worse in the morning, not because it is morning, but because they are getting up from a long period of rest.

Thank you for your response.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.

Thank you for the additional information. I'm likely not to pursue such a presentation unless my patient were worsening or his quality of life suffered. Because primary bacterial infection is rarely found in canine noses, the administration of antibiotics should be avoided as it is more likely to be harmful by selecting for resistant bacteria.

As I mentioned above, you can have a PCR panel performed in order to identify the presence of the common infectious agents - both bacterial and viral. This is a pricey test. You can also test the allergic etiology conjecture by administering a short course of a low dose glucocorticosteroid such as prednisone. The response to such therapy should be dramatic in the allergic patient. Antihistamines such as acrivastine (Benadryl) can be given at a pediatric dose but this class of drug isn't reliably effective in dogs.

Please continue our conversation if you wish.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I am concerned that we look after other peoples dogs often, and some of them have the same symptoms (some have not) which makes me think this is contagious. Young dogs that play together, mouthing etc. seem to be the worse for picking up the symptoms.

In all cases none of the dogs are showing any signs of ill health.

Than you.

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.
I believe "ill health" means other than the sneezing/snuffling? The only contagious respiratory infection of practical importance in so many dogs is infectious tracheobronchitis. While not considered dangerous, it can persist in an environment in which dogs congregate and dogs can repeatedly become infected because post-infection immunity isn't long lasting. The best you can do is to have your dogs vaccinated against infectious tracheobronchitis, insist that dogs you look after are also vaccinated, and accept that even the vaccination isn't completely protective.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

If your diagnosis is correct, and it certainly sounds as though it could be, will it clear up on it`s own, should vaccination take place while they still have it and is tracheobronchitis what we commonly call kennel cough?
Thank you

Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.
Yes, the great majority of cases remiss unaided within 3 weeks. Vaccination should be postponed until dogs aren't currently ill. Yes, infectious tracheobronchitis is commonly called kennel cough. A gagging, hacking cough is most common although a few dogs will develop a rhinitis (inflammation of the nose).

It's my pleasure. I'm going to check back with you in a few weeksfor an update. Feel free to return to our conversation - even after rating - prior to my contacting you if you wish.
Dr. Michael Salkin and other Dog Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your kind accept. I appreciate it.

I'll speak to you soon.

Please disregard the info request.

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