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    Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex (CIRDC)

    NOBIVAC INTRA-TRAC protects against Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex (CIRDC), also known as infectious tracheobronchitis.

    Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex (CIRDC)

    Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex (CIRDC), also known as infectious tracheobronchitis or canine cough, is commonly seen where dogs are in close contact with each other.

    Disease Overview

    CIRDC is a highly contagious multifactorial disease characterized by acute or chronic inflammation of the trachea and bronchial airways.

    The disease can spread rapidly among susceptible dogs housed in close confinement and signs can persist for many weeks.


    Concurrent infections with several viral and bacterial agents is common.

    Canine respiratory coronavirus and canine pneumovirus have also been implicated in CIRDC.


    Harsh, dry coughing fits

    Retching and gagging

    Possible partial anorexia


    More commonly seen with dogs in close proximity:

    Boarding kennels Doggie daycares Rescue centers Dog parks Dog events Groomers

    Exposure to the following produces increases susceptibility and severity:


    Extremes in temperature and humidity, and poor ventilation


    During the acute and subacute inflammatory stages, the air passages are filled with frothy, serous, or mucopurulent exudate.

    Development of more severe signs indicates bronchopneumonia or a complicating systemic infection:

    Fever Nasal discharge Depression Anorexia A productive cough

    Severe cases may progress to fatal bronchopneumonia in puppies or dogs infected with canine influenza virus.


    Direct contact (licking, nuzzling)

    Indirect (coughing or sneezing)

    Contaminated surfaces such as food and water bowls, cages, or human contact


    CIRDC should be suspected whenever the characteristic cough suddenly develops 5–10 days after exposure to other susceptible or affected dogs.

    Severity usually diminishes during the first 5 days, but the disease can persist for several weeks. The presumptive diagnosis of CIRDC is usually made from the history and clinical signs and by elimination of other causes of coughing.

    Merck Animal Health Vaccines


    This product has been shown to be effective for

    vaccination of healthy dogs 3 weeks of age

    or older against canine adenovirus type 2, canine

    parainfluenza virus and Bordetella bronchiseptica.






    Professional Resources and Educational Materials

    Keep your clinic and staff informed and aware of diseases and outbreaks.

    Addressing CIV in Your Clinic


    Tips and guidelines for your clinic to prevent and manage canine influenza.


    Nobivac® Social Media Kits


    Use these ready-to-share posts to educate pet parents and drive business to your clinic for preventative care.


    AAHA Canine Vaccination Guidelines


    In-depth information about canine vaccinations and veterinary best practices.




    View All Nobivac References

    Source : www.merck-animal-health-usa.com


    Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex (CIRDC, a.k.a. "Kennel Cough")

    PDF Date: July 2015 Authors:

    Document Type: Information Sheet

    Topics: Infectious Disease

    Species: Canine

    Canine infectious respiratory disease complex (CIRDC) is a syndrome of diseases that are of significant concern in any multi-dog setting. The appropriate treatment and containment practices needed to address a CIRDC incident will vary considerably based on the specific agent or agents involved. In many cases identifying the agents involved is not possible; therefore, a prevention strategy is the key to tackling CIRDC in a shelter setting.

    Table of Contents:

    Overview of Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex (CIRDC)

    Who is susceptible to CIRDC?

    Disease Course

    Diagnostic options for CIRDC outbreaks

    How can CIRDC be prevented in a shelter?

    Reduction of crowding and stress


    Environmental decontamination/removal of infected animals


    Information for Foster Homes

    Client Information Handout


    Overview of Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex (CIRDC) 

    It is common to use the term “kennel cough”, “infectious tracheobronchitis” and variations on “canine infectious respiratory disease complex” interchangeably. However, this is an overly simplistic view of a complicated syndrome. Disease is not limited to the trachea, nor does it always manifest as coughing. Clinical signs of canine infectious respiratory disease complex (CIRDC) may include sneezing, nasal and ocular discharge, and sometimes lower respiratory and/or systemic disease.

    Multiple bacterial and viral pathogens, acting both sequentially and synergistically, are associated with CIRDC.

    Viral pathogens associated with CIRDC in dogs include:

    Parainfluenza Adenovirus-2

    Respiratory coronavirus (this is distinct from canine enteric coronavirus)

    Herpesvirus-1 Pneumovirus

    Canine distemper and canine influenza (H3N8 and H3N2) may also be associated with upper respiratory signs, but can also cause more severe systemic disease in a proportion of infected dogs.

    Bacterial pathogens implicated in CIRDC include:

    Bordetella bronchiseptica

    Mycoplasma spp.

    Streptococcus zooepidemicus (may cause severe systemic disease)

    In addition, it is likely that secondary bacterial invaders of many species play a significant role in causing more severe disease in some dogs. We are still unraveling the complicated etiology of CIRDC, as evidenced by the fact that several of the pathogens listed above have only been recognized in recent years.

    New findings regarding known CIRDC pathogens, as well as current research on emerging pathogens, are adding to the already complex pathogenesis of CIRDC. High-density environments, such as shelters — where exposure, susceptibility, and transmission of infectious diseases are amplified — can contribute to outbreaks of known CIRDC pathogens, as well as the emergence of novel pathogens. Continuing to define the role of these emerging pathogens is critical to CIRDC management.

    Environmental factors and host immune response play an equally important role in facilitating development of CIRDC. There is a reason it has been called “kennel cough” – several of the pathogens listed above are insufficient in themselves to cause disease without the additional stress, high contact rates, and crowding often associated with kenneling. CIRDC’s multifactorial etiology requires a multifaceted approach for optimal management in the shelter setting.

    Who is susceptible to CIRDC?

    Although labelled canine infectious respiratory disease complex, some of the pathogens involved may also be transmitted to other species. Bordetella bronchiseptica may occasionally infect people, especially those with respiratory disease or immune compromise, and can also infect cats. Influenza (H3N2) too has been reported to infect cats. To prevent cross-species transmission, as well as to reduce stress for all concerned, it is ideal to always house animals separately by species.

    Disease Course

    The incubation period for most CIRDC pathogens is typically 2-3 days but can range from 2 days (influenza H3N8 and H3N2) to up to 6 weeks (distemper). All CIRDC pathogens have a preclinical shedding period, complicating disease management. Clinical signs and shedding typically last for 5-10 days; however, some pathogens can shed for prolonged periods (Bordetella bronchiseptica, Mycoplasma, and distemper). Clinical signs are typically mild, self-limiting, and resolve with supportive care. Severe infection can sometimes be seen, more commonly in younger and immunocompromised animals.

    Diagnostic options for CIRDC outbreaks

    Virtually all CIRDC pathogens cause a similar overall clinical presentation of coughing and/or nasal discharge. While Bordetella-induced CIRDC is classically thought of as causing only relatively mild disease, more severe disease may be seen, especially in a crowded shelter or boarding facility where stress and a high load of secondary pathogens provide a synergistic effect. Therefore, the cause of CIRDC cannot be diagnosed based on clinical signs alone in a single dog. However, the pattern of affected animals and the severity of signs can at least provide some clue as to the likely pathogen(s).

    Source : www.uwsheltermedicine.com

    Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex

    Veterinary nurses play a key role in helping clients separate facts from fiction in regard to CIRDC as well as other vaccine-preventable diseases.

    Summer 2021, Preventive Medicine

    Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex

    Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex CIRDC is a highly contagious disease that is transmissible via the oronasal route, inhalation, and direct contact.

    Lara Arbach

    LVT, VTS Clinical Practice (Canine/Feline)

    Amie Barron/shutterstock.com

    Over the past several decades, the availability and use of vaccines for companion animals have become more widespread, enabling the animals to live longer, healthier lives. Yet for unvaccinated dogs, infectious diseases such as canine infectious respiratory disease complex (CIRDC) still pose a significant threat. Clients’ first visit with a new dog or puppy provides the optimal time for veterinary nurses, working along with veterinarians, to thoroughly discuss the principles of immunization and the value of vaccines for their dog’s wellbeing.


    CIRDC (also known as infectious tracheobronchitis or kennel cough) is one of the most common respiratory diseases in dogs.1 It is a highly contagious, multifactorial disease characterized by acute or chronic inflammation of the upper respiratory system.2 Historically, the most common pathogens associated with CIRDC have been canine parainfluenza virus (CPIV), canine adenovirus type 2 (CAV-2), canine herpesvirus type 1 (CHV-1), canine influenza virus (CIV) subtypes H3N8 and H3N2, and (BOX 1).3 Dogs can be infected with one pathogen or concurrently with several.3 CIRDC is transmissible via the oronasal route through mucosal secretions, inhalation of airborne virus, direct contact, and contaminated fomites.4 Most CIRDC pathogens are moderately stable outside the host, surviving in the environment for no more than a few hours to several weeks.3 All CIRDC pathogens except for CAV-2 are readily susceptible to routinely used disinfectants; CAV-2 requires disinfection with 5% sodium hydrochloride diluted 1:32.4

    BOX 1 Pathogens Involved with CIRDC3


    Canine parainfluenza virus (CPIV)

    Canine adenovirus type 2 (CAV-2)

    Canine herpesvirus type 1 (CHV-1)

    Canine influenza virus (CIV) subtypes H3N8 and H3N2

    Canine distemper virus (CDV)

    Canine respiratory coronavirus (CRCoV)

    Canine pneumovirus (CnPnV)

    Canine retroviruses (types 1, 2, and 3)


    Bordetella bronchiseptica

    Streptococcus equi subspecies zooepidemicus (Note: This gram-positive bacterium causes zoonotic infection in horses. Although not a commensal organism in dogs and cats, it can colonize their upper respiratory epithelial cells and can be a cofactor in upper respiratory infections attributed to fatal necrohemorrhagic pneumonia outbreaks in overcrowded environments.)

    Mycoplasma cynos (Note: Mycoplasma species are normal commensal bacteria of the upper respiratory tract; their clinical significance in CIRDC has not been completely described. M cynos has been isolated as a single agent from dogs with pneumonia.)

    A diagnosis of CIRDC should be suspected for a dog with an acute onset of coughing and a history of exposure to other affected dogs.3 CIRDC spreads rapidly among susceptible dogs within close proximity (e.g., in places such as dog parks) or housed in close confinement (e.g., shelters and boarding kennels).2

    Incubation periods for the various causative pathogens range from 2 to 10 days.3 Clinical signs can vary from mild or none to an acute-onset, dry, “honking” cough followed by gagging or retching and expectoration of mucus.2,3 Other signs may include sneezing, nasal and/or ocular discharge, and sometimes lower respiratory and/or systemic disease.4 Although CIRDC is typically a mild, self-limiting disease, it may progress to a fatal bronchopneumonia in puppies younger than 6 months of age and can develop into chronic bronchitis in debilitated adult dogs.2 Clinical signs and virus shedding typically last for 5 to 10 days; however, some pathogens, such as , and canine distemper virus (CDV), can be shed for prolonged periods.4

    For ruling out other causes of coughing or determining the severity of disease, thoracic radiographs can be useful. Diagnostic testing for bacterial and viral pathogens and obtaining samples for bacterial culture can be performed, but results vary because many of the pathogens can be isolated from both healthy and diseased dogs and co-infections are common.5 Because of the self-limiting course of the disease, most dogs with CIRDC do not need antimicrobial drugs or hospitalization. However, if clinical signs persist and a fever develops past a 10-day observation period, further diagnostic workup and antimicrobial treatment are recommended.5


    The adaptive immune system (also called acquired immune system) responds to microbial invasion by producing protective antibodies (humoral immunity) or protective cells (cell-mediated immunity) or both.6 Active immunity occurs when the body produces antibodies to antigens after either exposure via natural infection through the environment or injection with a noninfectious form of the antigen in a vaccine.7

    Modified live virus (MLV) vaccines contain live organisms and are more effective at triggering cell-mediated and humoral immune responses; however, live organism used for vaccines must be attenuated (made to be noninfective) so that the organism is stable and able to pass through the animal and replicate but is no longer pathogenic.8 With current manufacturing technology, reversion of an attenuated virus to a virulent, disease-producing state is exceptionally low to nonexistent.9 Use of MLV vaccines can cause adverse events, but such events are generally uncommon.

    Source : todaysveterinarynurse.com

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