What Is the Incubation Period for a Dog With Bordetella?

by Deborah Lundin
    Dog kennels and shelters increase the risk of Bordetella infection in dogs.

    Dog kennels and shelters increase the risk of Bordetella infection in dogs.

    Thinkstock/Comstock/Getty Images

    The bacterium Bordetella bronchiseptica is one of the causes of kennel cough. When Bordetella causes kennel cough, it is typically referred to as Bordetella or tracheobronchitis. This highly contagious condition is common in kennels and shelters. Symptoms include fever, nasal discharge and dry, honking cough.

    Spread and Incubation

    Bordetella is an airborne bacterium, so it is highly contagious. If your dog spends regular time with other dogs, such as in a kennel, dog park or obedience class, exposure to Bordetella is likely. When your dog encounters an infected dog, the incubation period is typically one week. After this, symptoms may surface.

    Treatment and Prevention

    Treatment for kennel cough caused by Bordetella is often antibiotic medication, whose administration helps eliminate bacteria and reduce risk of secondary infections such as pneumonia. Symptoms last for about 10 days, but a dog is contagious for up to 14 weeks. A vaccine against Bordetella offers your dog a reduced risk against the bacteria, though not guaranteed protection. Vaccinated dogs can still become sick with Bordetella and infect other dogs. Many kennels and dog classes require vaccination against Bordetella due to the fact it is so contagious.

    Photo Credits

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    About the Author

    Deborah Lundin has worked as a professional writer since 2005, though writing has always been a passion. She brings a background in health and fitness, veterinary care, professional cooking and parenting. She studied medical laboratory science and sociology at Northern Illinois University. Sites published on include Yahoo, Physorg and MedicalXPress.

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