Yesterday we took the decision to close our club for two weeks. About ten dogs caught acute tracheobronchitis or Kennel Cough. It is a widespread disease caused by several different viruses and bacteria and is highly contagious.The most common symptom is a dry hacking cough sometimes followed by retching. Many owners describe the cough as being similar to whooping cough in children. A watery nasal discharge may also be present. With mild cases, dogs continue to eat and be alert and active. Many times, there is a recent history of boarding or coming in contact with other dogs. In more severe cases, the symptoms may progress and include lethargy, fever, refusal to eat, pneumonia and in very severe cases, even death. The majority of severe cases occur in animals with a low immune system or in young unvaccinated puppies. There are two treatment options depending on the severity of the disease. In the most common mild and uncomplicated form of the disease, antibiotics are usually not used. If the dog has a good appetite and is alert but suffers only from a recurrent cough, it is best to let the disease run its course just as with a cold in humans.In more severe and complicated cases where the animal is not eating, running a fever, or showing signs of pneumonia, antibiotics are needed.The best prevention is to not expose a dog to young puppies. If this cannot be avoided, then proper vaccination is the next best option.Infectious tracheobronchitis is a disease of dogs and wild canids. It does not appear to be a risk to healthy humans or cats.