View Full Version : Sam is not feeling well help please .

19th July 2006, 11:39 PM
My friend's Cavalier Sam who is 8 years old has developed kennel cough . He is very ill and she is frantic. She lives on her own with him and he is her constant companion. He had the vaccine at the vet before he was left at kennels for afew days , when she picked him up he had the most awful cough and she brought him straight to the vet . He seems to think that the vaccine caused the cough to develop .
Any words of hope and advice would be much appreciated .

20th July 2006, 12:54 AM
I have heard that kennel cough is analogous to a chest cold for humans. That is what is said on this website too http://www.marvistavet.com/html/body_kennel_cough.html

From my own experience, I have a cavalier that had the kennel cough innoculation and picked up kennel cough at the doggy day care anyway. Just like Sam did. My cav. got better all on his own, just with time.
The cough sounds worse than it is and it is highly contagious to other dogs. But for most dogs it isn't a serious condition.

I think by taking Sam back to the vet's, the right thing was done. If it was a serious problem, the vet would've said so. I think the sound of that cough just makes you all worry about the poor guy. We don't want our pet to be in distress and just want to help him.

20th July 2006, 12:57 AM
The cough often sounds a lot worse than the illness is -- has the vet said it is serious? If so has it developed into a secondary infection? I hope not, poor fellow. I know it is rare for the vaccine to cause KC; I also don't think it necessarily protects against all the forms that may go around. And, it doesn;t always provide enough coverage and dogs get it ayway (hence some vets do both the intranasal and the injection to be sure). That's why I think many people guess the dog got KC from the vax when it is more liekly they were exposed to a different strain of infection or the dog wasn;t adequately protected by the single vax, or the dog was exposed to early (eg before the vax could take affect, which takes at least five days). The problem is that if they aren't vaccinated they are at risk in a kennel environment for developing it anyway (pound dogs very typically have it; Lily had a mild case when I got her out of the pound for example) -- and also almost every kennel requires it so there's little choice but to give it.

I sure hope he gets better fast but this can be very worrying.

There's a lot of good background here, from this very relaible vet advice site:


27th July 2006, 07:31 PM
Just heard today that Sam's heart is the problem , not kennel cough at all . The vet said that Kennel cough caused the heart problem but i dont think that could happen . Sam had 3 fits monday night after starting the medication and his mum had to bring him back to the vet to ask to give a lower dose of the medication . He seems to be responding to the lower dose . Any recomendations please.

27th July 2006, 08:40 PM
How could kennel cough possibly cause a heart problem? That sounds very odfd to me, unless he thinks pneumonia as a complication, spurred the development of the heart issue. Odd. Cavaliers almost all eventually get MVD; it is endemic in the breed (and the one thing we all need to always watch out for as our dogs get older).

I have a really good post on MVD and older cavaliers in the Health section of the library, from info from a woman who really knows heart probelms and older dogs, both. Have her read this and print it out for her vets:


This lists all the medications he should be goping on to. Frusemide probably right away. I have found vets in Ireland are not very active on this front. She would be best going to have a proper cardiac evaluation done at UCD and get a more complete sense of the dog's heart health which can significantly help shape a treatment regime and prolong his life. Many dogs who are in congestive heart failure (by the time you hear the cough, they are) will live many, many years with the right care.

I would also highly recommend Anicare vets in Dublin if she is Dublin based, or Finbar Heslin of Beaumont vets in Kildare, or Pete Wedderburn (the TV3 vet!) at Bray Vets.

Alternatively I know someone very good in the Cork area.

Ps I highly rrecommend EVERYONE read Pat's post at the link above. We all need to know as much as possible about MVD as probably every one of us will face it sooner or later and she has much on prevention and early care. :thmbsup:

27th July 2006, 08:51 PM
Kennel cough does not cause mitral valve disease. If the dog has MVD, he should not be taking medication for kennel cough. The cough of a Cavalier with MVD tends to be very distinctive. At age 8 years, it is extremely likely Sam has MVD; the likelihood at his age is over 80%. See this webpage http://www.cavalierhealth.org/mitral_valve_disease.htm for more information about the disease.

Sam definitely needs to see a specialist if he is coughing so much.

Rod Russell
Orlando, Florida USA

28th July 2006, 01:23 AM
So sorry to hear of Sam's illness. Hope the vets can get things sorted out for Sam and on treatment that is helpful.

Cathy Moon
28th July 2006, 01:46 AM
Hopefully Sam can be seen by a cardiologist to determine what grade he is at and what medications he should be on. I'm hoping his medication helps him feel better.

There is a possibility that he has both MVD and kennel cough. We actually had to have endoscopy done on our Geordie's lungs when he was a pup. The vet ran a culture to find the right antibiotic for him. He had a secondary infection, a complication of bordetella. He completely recovered from that after he was given the right antibiotic.

Send Sam hugs and kisses from me and mine! :flwr:

29th July 2006, 06:22 AM
i'd think if a dog with untreated mitral valve disease had kennel cough, it would likely put additional strain on the heart, to be coughing that hard.
It's good that you are helping your friend find out more about what might be going on, it may result in sam getting the help he needs sooner.

Charleen and Karlin and Rod, thanks for those informative links. Charleen, that link you posted is the website of my vet, or one of my vets, the one that i started taking my cat to years ago, and the first one i took zack to when he was sick when i first got him. They weren't the vet that finally cured him, but i still have confidence in them for many things. I've found lots of detailed information on their site, their info on medications is a good resource. Their info is so clearly written and thorough. I learned a lot about kennel cough from reading it just now, and also from the Mike Richards Q&A, he's also a great communicator, so clear and straightforward, and caring. i haven't yet read the MVD links--so much to learn!

i hope sam will be ok and if he has kennel cough, it will soon clear up on its own. it sounds like the sooner he has a competent cardiology evaluation, the better.

29th July 2006, 09:47 PM
Thanks everyone , I have passed the info on to Sams mum will keep you posted on progress.