Why Is Your Dog Coughing? Here Are Common Reasons And Symptoms


Bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites can cause coughing in infected dogs.
(Credits: Reuters)

Bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites can cause coughing in infected dogs.

Your dog may be coughing for a number of reasons— it can be a sign of an underlying respiratory condition or other reasons like medicinal side-effects. Generally, coughing is a normal behaviour, but if your dog exhibits signs of repeated coughing, then it could be chronic cough.

We would be unable to figure out whether the coughing is caused by mere dust or is it something deeper or life threatening, it’s important for us to understand the reason, gain knowledge and observe our dog’s coughing pattern.

Bacteria, viruses, fungi and parasites can cause coughing in infected dogs. These infectious agents can target the entire airway from the upper respiratory tract to the lungs causing several different conditions, such as bronchitis, tracheal collapse or pneumonia depending on the specific infection.

Here are some of the common symptoms and reasons why your dog might be coughing:


– Continuous coughing for more than 2 days.

– Breathing issues.

– Weakness or refusing to eat.

– Pet is suffering from fever.

– Tiredness or excessive lethargy.

– Pet may feel irritated and don’t allow you to touch the nose or ears.

If you witness any of the symptoms, you must take your pet to the veterinary doctor immediately.

Also Read: Lohri 2023: Delectable Traditional Recipes To Enjoy On The Harvest Festival

Reasons of your dog coughing

Kennel cough

It is a highly contagious viral respiratory disease that results in blocking the airways and causes inflammation in the windpipe. Dogs usually catch kennel coughing, when they are in direct contact with other dogs or at places where a number of canines come together like in a day care facilities or training groups. Dogs with Kennel coughing tend to have a deep, dry cough along with possible sneezing, snorting and in some cases vomiting. As a precaution, always consult the doctor to get your dog kennel cough vaccination.

Canine influenza

Like humans are subject to contracting the flu, the canines get canine influenza. Flu can last from between 15 days to a month. Also it is important to note that while canine influenza is more difficult to treat than kennel cough. The signs of illness are coughing, runny nose, lethargy, eye discharge, fever and reduced appetite. In fact, the flu can further lead to secondary infections and severe illnesses like pneumonia.


Another infection that causes coughing in dogs is pneumonia that results in inflammation of the lungs. Dogs suffering from pneumonia could have a cough that sounds wet and soft, which usually accompanies fever or lethargy and lack of appetite.

Indoor irritants

Unlike humans, a dog’s sense of smell is much stronger that might irritate your dog. Some of the airborne irritants that can cause your dogs to cough include, dust mites, molds, ash or smoke, deodorants, air fresheners and household sprays.

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