Transform your dog into a well-behaved, obedient furry friend.

Want a quick & easy way to an obedient dog WITHOUT spending hours on training?

Can dogs get colds and what is the “dog flu”?

Can dogs get a cold?

Table of Contents

Can dogs get colds? The answer to this concerning question is YES! It is essential to keep in mind that this is not the same as the common cold or the flu that we humans contract.

I’m sure that many dog owners would have several queries and questions in mind regarding the usual “dog flu” or “dog cold.” In the following article, the most frequently asked questions related to dog cold have been answered and compiled in the best way possible.

Can dogs get colds from humans?

Gladly, the straightforward answer to this is NO!

The particular species of viruses that cause dog flu, or canine influenza, are different from the ones that cause flu in humans. Although researches suggest the infection of canines by some strains of the human influenza virus, the dogs remain asymptomatic.

Worried about cuddling your dog while having the flu? Fear not; your pet is completely safe. 

Do dogs get colds?

Well, the common cold or flu is entirely out of the question as dogs cannot contract them. “Dog flu,” however, is something specific to dogs quite like the common cold. Sneezing, runny nose, coughing, lethargy, lack of appetite, and fever are the associated symptoms.

Have another dog? Better keep it away from the infected one since the rate of transmission is incredibly high within dogs. Humans, however, are prone to dog flu. Thankfully, it cannot stop you from cuddling and playing with your dear dog.

My dog has a runny nose; what does it mean?

Sick puppy with a cold

If dogs can get colds, do their nose get runny like humans’? Yes and no… Allergies, by far, are the most widespread cause of a runny nose. Pollens, foods, drugs, mites, spores, and chemicals are common allergens to dogs.

Mucus or pus in nasal discharge indicates a bacterial, fungal, or viral infection. Blockage of one nostril causing the other to be runny and distemper stimulating secretion of yellow, sticky fluid from the nose are two other known explanations. Genetic problems like cleft palate lead to a post-meal runny nose. 

Dog sneezing; what does it mean?

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Animal (@animalbeastmaster)

An irritant in a dog’s nose like dust, household products, perfume, or even pollen can stimulate sneezing. “Playing sneeze,” sneezing while playing or cuddling, is relatively common and not something to worry about as it goes away by itself.  Unusual things stuck up their nose, e.g., fragments of twigs and leaves or even dirt, can result in dog sneezing. Infections and tumors are health issues that lead to dog sneezing.

Common in small dogs, the reverse sneeze is a sudden sound like a honk. In a reverse sneeze, it appears as if a dog is laughing. Nasal mites, which are tiny bugs, cause persistent sneezing in dogs. These are found in the dirt and are extremely irritating for them.

How to get rid of a dog’s cold?

Worried about your dearest dog, your best friend?

No need to because various means of prevention are present. Keeping away from public places or kennels with recently reported cases. Vaccinating for strains of canine influenza is a great way to stop your dogs from getting colds. 

God forbid if your dog contracts the cold, visiting a veterinarian is the first step one should take. Unfortunately, there is no cure for dog flu. Treatment is supportive, and the veterinarian can advise you on ways to keep your dog comfortable during his illness and recovery. Antibiotics prescription and a nutritional plan given by the veterinarian will help recover and prevent secondary bacterial infections. The vet will also emphasise appropriate quarantine procedures to prevent the spread of dog flu.

Keep your dog healthy and make sure you give him good quality food and lots of water.

What is Kennel Cough and how does it sound like?

A dog making weird noises like choking on something indicates a classic case of Kennel Cough. The classic symptom of Kennel Cough is a persistent, forceful cough. Thankfully, the dog’s appetite and energy level are not hindered. Other symptoms including illness, sneezing, a runny nose, or eye discharge, might be witnessed.

Immediate treatment is advised since Kennel cough is contagious. Medications may speed recovery or minimize symptoms during infection. Infected dogs must be kept away from other animals. Vaccines act as means of prevention. Mere three to six weeks are required for the canine to recover completely who is then good to go.


Canines do get a specific kind of flu known as “dog flu.” The common cold or the flu humans contract cannot be transmitted to dogs, neither can humans contract dog flu from dogs.

Allergies, irritants, and infections are widespread causes of runny nose and sneezing in canines. 

Kennel Cough is a familiar condition in which persistent, forceful cough resembling choking is found in dogs.

Vaccines are the best prevention available. In case of infection, visiting the veterinarian should be the first step, followed by proper care and medication.

What next?

What’s better than asking and inquiring the expert himself? Having a conversation with your veterinarian. You can also check out ways to help your dog live a longer life through nutrition. 

We hope this was helpful!

Related Articles