Can humans catch kennel cough? (paging Vetbridge and MDs)

A net bud got a new dog a week ago from the local pound. The dog is sick, and her other dog is also sick with the same symptoms, which appear to me to be kennel cough.

The net bud is now also getting sick. Can kennel cough cross over to humans?

FWIW, all are headed to appropriate vets and MDs today…

Kennel cough is caused by the bacteria, Bordetella bronchiseptica which is in the same family as the one that causes whooping cough in humans, Bordetella pertussis They are not the same and neither is zoonotic. So we don’t get kennel cough, and dogs don’t get whooping cough.

The girls got me a kitten as an early father’s day present. He’s got what our vet says is the cat version of kennel cough and some form of pink eye. He told us not to worry about the cough (this was just yesterday) but to wash our hands after handling him because the pink eye (conjunctivitis, I’d suppose) could be passed over and give us eye irritation.

“Kennel cough” is a name given to a number of similar respiratory illnesses in dogs. I like the term Infectious Tracheobronchitis. The organism Bordetella bronchiseptica does not affect humans, as picnurse already noted. IIRC it does affect Pandas. Dogs with Bordatella infections can be highly infectious to other dogs, and can remain infectious for months after the cough subsides.

Which is why, if you have to board your dog, make sure the kennel/boarding facility requires up-to-date kennel cough vaccinations.

Sorry to say, Bordetella bronchiseptica can affect humans. Infections have been reported in immunosuppressed patients, i.e. transplant recipients or those with birth defects involving the immune system. It would be at least theoretically possible for susceptible patients to include those on prolonged high-dose steroids or chemotherapy.

There was a fatal case in a child at our medical center during my residency.
I haven’t heard of an immunologically normal person getting “kennel cough”.

Wow. In my practice, I always add “assuming the person is not immunosuppressed” to any conversation on zoonosis, just to CMA. Thanks for the info, Jackmannii. I feel a lil bit smarter than when I woke up this morning. :wink: