The Kennel Cough -
Bordetella Vaccine Controversy

Is the kennel cough vaccine harmful?

The Bordetella vaccine is supposed to prevent canine kennel cough, not create it. Here is the vaccine controversey and how you may avoid the disease, the vaccine and still get your dog into a kennel.

What is kennel cough anyway? It's simply a cold for heavens sake and just like humans, the healthier the dog the less chance of catching a cold.

And like the dozens or maybe even hundreds cold viruses we are exposed to in our lifetimes, kennel cough is not just bordetella. The bordetella vaccine is named for the only strain it is supposed to protect against.

I admit that in a weak dog the dry hacking cough can last as long as three weeks. With a better immune system, a few days and with a strong immune system it will have no effect whatsoever.

Like any upper respiratory virus, if a dogs immune system is weak or stressed it can lead to an upper respiratory infection and then require antibiotics. Instead of the bordetella vaccine, stay ahead of the game and give homeopathic remedies if symptoms appear.

There are human homeopathic cough remedies that should be easy to find by a Swiss company called Similasan. They are labeled #1, #2, and #3 and each describe what kind of cough they help best. There are also herbal cough syrups at the health food store.

When is the Bordetella Vaccine Required?

Even though many of us believe as noted immunologist Ronald Schultz, PhD says, “Kennel cough is not a vaccinatable disease,” why are we then forced to give it to our dogs?

Because kennels keep many dogs in a small area where the cold virus can be easily passed around and the kennel owner doesn't want complaints, or even worse, lawsuits.

Is there an alternative? Yes, nosodes are becoming popular because they work. Ask your vet or the kennel if they have nosodes available.

The bordetella vaccine doesn't  work and can cause illness itself. See over-vaccinating.

Remember vaccinations cause suppression of the immune system and may cause symptoms of the disease (or the disease itself).

How to Avoid the Bordetella Vaccine When Kenneling Your Dog

Go in and talk to the owner personally.

Offer to sign a waiver saying you will not hold the kennel responsible if your dog gets kennel cough while under their care and that you assume full responsibility.

Intra-nasal or Shot for Kennel Cough?

If your dog MUST have the kennel cough vaccine, please get the intra-nasal version instead of the shot. At least by entering the body the same way the virus does, gives the immune system a chance and your dog will be less likely to get kennel cough from the vaccine.

Think about the natural way a body deals with a virus. It get's inhaled. In order to isolate it and get it out of the body, mucus is formed to surround it and then expel it.

Questioning Flu Shots

As a comparison, have you ever noticed people who get flu shots get sicker than people without them?  I'm being sneaky using this human vaccine as a comparison, because I don't want you to get sick by getting one! One of my own sisters gets flu shots and every year she gets sick. I don't.

A healthy body will get rid of a virus in fairly short order but if an unhealthy body which needs protection, gets a vaccination, it often gets sick from the vaccine itself because of low resistance. The only answer is improving health with better foods and natural remedies.

Bordetella Vaccine and Puppies

The bordetella vaccine is often given to puppies as young as six weeks old and I have no idea why. At this age they should still have immunity through their mother.

Not only that, but a puppy is going through a lot of emotional upheaval at that age. A new home, new people, other pets, new odors and often new food. How many times have we been told that stress causes illness? I believe giving a new member of your household any vaccinations right away is not a smart move.

In fact no puppy should have any vaccinations prior to 9 weeks of age! I didn't make this up. For more information please read which dog vaccinations should be given and when at: Dog Vaccination Schedule. Remember it is your choice, not your vet's.

I do not vaccinate my dogs. No one has become ill. In fact they are healthier. While rabies is still legally required you can usually get a waiver if your dog has had a bad reaction to the vaccine or is over nine years old. Do your homework to find out the laws in your state. I felt obligated to break the law in the case of my dog and the rabies vaccine. Why? My dog got cancer (rabies miasm) at the injection site and I was told there were no waivers in the state I was living in, which I found totally ubsurd.

If your vet insists, especially using combination shots, find a new vet! And please see the dog vaccination schedule so you don't over vaccinate your loved one.

I made a promise to one of my readers that I would post a message she sent to me. Needless to say, she was very upset because she was trying to take care of her puppy.


First Name: Lexi
Country: United States

Comments or Questions : I don't recommend the intra nasal bordatella vaccine for puppies. All six of my friends' pups came down with the kennel cough within a week of intra nasal vaccination. One was so bad that he developed pneumonia within a few hours of onset of cough and almost died.


Thank you Lexi - If more people would share their experiences about the bordetella vaccine, it would make the vaccine controversy much more plausible. What bothers me about Lexi's message is the intra nasal vaccine is the safest way to go.

If you have any questions or comments, by all means post below.

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Important Notice

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