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Bordetella Symptoms in Cats

To keep your cat healthy, it's important to know about diseases such as Bordetella. In this article, our San Gabriel vets will go over everything you need to know about Bordetella, including its symptoms and treatment.

What is Cat Bordetella?

Bortadella is a highly contagious, respiratory disease. This disease is also known as kennel cough or Bordetellosis. A bacterium called Bordetella bronchiseptica in cats causes this upper respiratory infection. This disease is classified as a rare zoonosis, which means that this disease can be transmitted to humans from animals. Bordetella in cats is a worldwide disease so it is important to take the necessary precautions to keep you and your pet safe.

How does Bordetella spread?

The main way Bordetella spreads is by cats inhaling contaminated bacterial particles. When these particles make their way to the respiratory tract, the cat can experience an inflamed windpipe.

When cats visit places where they interact with other cats, such as cat daycare, groomers, and boarding facilities, they are more likely to contract this virus and develop symptoms of an upper respiratory infection. Limit the interactions your cat has in group settings until you can get your cat the Bordetella vaccine.

Certain situations can increase the chances of a cat catching diseases caused by the bacterium. These include the following:

  • Colder temperatures
  • Staying in a poorly ventilated living space
  • Overstaying in Kennels
  • Exposure to dust or smoke
  • Stress from traveling or other issues

Bordetella in Cats Symptoms

A persistent cough characterizes Bordetella infections in cats. Coughing can sound similar to a honking goose, according to cat parents. Vets refer to this as "reverse sneezing."

Some other symptoms of Bordetella in cats include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Eye discharge
  • Runny nose
  • Fever

Treatments for Bordetella in Cats

Have no worries, Bordetella will go away on its own without the need for treatment. At the vet, they may prescribe antibiotics to help your cat recover faster. Always give your pet the full dose of any medication prescribed.

Vaccines are also available to prevent infections. Your vet can administer vaccines against these diseases by injection or nose drops.

Bordetella Vaccine for Cats

The Bordetella vaccine for cats protects against this specific virus and is widely available to keep your cat safe from kennel cough. You may have heard it called the “kennel cough vaccine.” If you're wondering how long the Bordetella vaccine in cats is good for, the intranasal version of the vaccine is typically administered annually, although boarding facilities or hospitals may recommend it every six months. Contact our vets instead of Googling "How long is the Bordetella vaccine good for in cats?". Every pet is different and it's important to get the right information from your vet. 

Vaccinations are usually very safe, but the benefits of vaccinations must be weighed against any risks. Your veterinarian may advise against getting the Bordetella vaccine if your cat is immunocompromised, sick, or pregnant. This is because the Bordetella vaccine can cause side effects in cats. Your vet will discuss the risks and benefits of the vaccine and look into your cat's previous history of vaccine reactions.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

 Book an appointment at Temple City Animal Hospital today if your cat needs a Bordetella vaccine. Our San Gabriel vets are here to help.

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