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LennyDVM, Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 548
Experience:  30 years as owner of a mobile practice treating dogs, cats, horses and other pets.
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my 10 week old lab puppy has had a cough for 2 weeks. Vet says

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my 10 week old lab puppy has had a cough for 2 weeks. Vet says probably kennel cough. He has been on Clavamox for 2 weeks, cough is not better, cough is now wet and seems quite phlemy. We gave him the last of the Clavamox yesterday. I understand that the meds are just to cover a secondary infection like pneu. but I am concerned to end the meds when he still a wet productive cough. He is up during the night with this cough and at times seems like he is sruggling to clear his throught with the phelm to breath. He also had a lot of round worms when we got him and the vet said his cough could be related to that as well. His stool was check a week ago and there where just a few eggs, we wormed him again Weds. I am frustrated for my puppy and myself and not sure how to proceed. I would like your opion. We just lost a pet last month and I am worried about this puppy. Also puppy was check for temp and listien to lungs last Monday, should he be checked again for temp this week, he is eating wel
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  LennyDVM replied 8 years ago.

Recovery from uncomplicated infectious tracheobronchitis (kennel cough) usually takes about 2 weeks. Clavamox is widely used to treat secondary infections. I agree with your concern about stopping antibiotics while there is a lot of coughing. Generally, if secondary infections and pneumonia occur, dogs get a fever and have a poor appetite.


You do not want to stop a productive cough with drugs, but there are some things that might help. A humidifier can be useful. You can also take the pup into the bathroom while running hot water in the shower to increase the humidity.


Pediatric cough syrup containing guaifenesin can be used. Guaifenesin is an expectorant and loosens thick mucous allowing it to move up the trachea and get coughed out. Guaifenesin often comes combined with cough suppressants (dextromethorphan). The combo is OK because it doesn't generally stop coughing. Do NOT get products with Tylenol/acetaminophen or other ingredients. A reasonable dose for a 10 pound puppy is about 1/4 teaspoon (1.25 ml) 3-4 times a day of the pediatric (not adult) syrups.


The roundworms are a concern. They have a very interesting life cycle. Encysted larva are activated during pregnancy and are passed to the unborn pups across the placenta. They also transmit via milk. Some of the reactivated larva pass to the mother's intestine and mature. The mature worms lay eggs that can infect the pups and other dogs that sniff feces or surfaces contaminated with fecal material. Ingested eggs hatch in the intestines and larva penetrate the intestines entering the body. They migrate through the body and can cause significant damage. Eventually they get into the lungs and are coughed up and swallowed. If the number of migrating larva are large, the cough can be severe. It is a good idea to continue treating every couple weeks for at least 3-4 doses. The treatment kills adults in the intestines, but not the larva. All of the once a month heartworm preventatives are labeled to treat roundworm.


It is a good idea to check the pups temperature and have the lungs listened to again.


Let me know if you have follow up questions.

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