Pet Health

Bordetella Vaccine For Dogs: Everything Dog Owners Should Know

As a dog owner, here's everything you need to know about the bordetella vaccine for dogs including what bordetella is, which dogs need it and how much the vaccine costs.

5
min read

Bordetella is a highly contagious respiratory tract infection caused by Bordetella pertussis and Bordetella parapertussis. It's also known as "kennel cough," and it’s easily spread from dog to dog, especially in contained areas, like daycare centers and pet boarding locations. The disease can be mild or severe, depending on the dog and how long they've been exposed to other dogs who have the infection. Because of modern research, there are now vaccines available to help prevent Bordetella in dogs. We’re going to talk about them. 

In this article, we’re discussing the truth about Bordetella and whether your dog needs a vaccine to prevent it or not. Then, we’ll be sharing the average cost of the Bordetella vaccine for dogs and where you can find one for your beloved pet. Finally, we’re covering the best ways you can save money when shopping for pet vaccines. 

What is Bordetella?

Bordetella (also known as kennel cough) is a bacterial infection that causes severe upper respiratory tract illness in dogs. It is highly contagious and can spread easily between animals and humans. 

Dogs infected with bordetella often experience symptoms like coughing, sneezing, and nasal discharge. The most common symptom of Bordetella is a loud, unmistakable, “honking” cough. For many, the illness causes only mild symptoms, while others could be left with serious complications such as pneumonia or bronchitis if left untreated.

What is a Bordetella Vaccine?

The Bordetella vaccine is the only real protection dogs and puppies have against kennel cough. And, while the illness itself isn’t fatal, there are lots of serious potential side effects associated with Bordetella. The vaccine can help prevent these. 

Most Bordetella vaccines are administered in a 2-part series, approximately 2-4 weeks apart. It can be given to puppies as early as 6-8 weeks old. 

Protection from the Bordetella vaccine typically lasts for about a year, although many boarding facilities require one booster every six months. The frequency that your dog should be vaccinated depends on many different factors that should be discussed with your vet. 

Bordetella Vaccine For Dogs


Does My Dog Really Need a Bordetella Vaccine?

If you’re wondering whether your dog needs a Bordetella vaccine, first ask yourself whether he or she is part of one of the following high-risk groups:

  • Dogs that spend time in kennels or shelters
  • Dogs that visit the groomer
  • Dogs that attend training classes
  • Dogs that attend daycare centers often
  • Dogs that travel frequently with their owners

Social dogs, or any dogs that are scheduled to be boarded, should be vaccinated with the Bordetella vaccine. 

How Much Does the Bordetella Vaccine Cost?

The great news about the Bordetella vaccine is that it’s generally incredibly affordable. Depending on your location and the weight of your dog, this specific vaccine tends to cost about $10-$30 per dog, per vaccine. 

Each vaccine lasts for approximately 12 months, so it’s important to make sure your dog is up to date on their protection against kennel cough. 

dog debit card bordatella vaccine


Is the Bordetella Vaccine Required?

The Bordetella vaccine is classified as a “non-core” vaccine for puppies and dogs. It’s not a core vaccine, like the rabies shot, which means that it’s not required for all dogs. In fact, the recommendation for the Bordetella vaccine depends entirely on your pet’s risk factors. 

For the most part, it is a good idea to vaccinate your dog against Bordetella, especially if they frequently socialize with other dogs. However, it’s always beneficial to talk with your regular vet to help yourself better understand the right protection for your dog. 

Potential Side Effects of the Bordetella Vaccine

For the most part, vaccine side effects are mild and tend to be quite rare. They are much more manageable than dealing with kennel cough in your pet. General vaccine side effects tend to include:

  • Fever
  • Swelling at the injection site
  • Loss of appetite (usually temporary)

If your pet experiences any vaccine side effects, contact your veterinarian. The most common side effect of most vaccines is mild to moderate lethargy (typically for a few days following vaccination). This is due to the body's normal immune response to vaccination and will typically resolve on its own. 

Where Can I Find the Bordetella Vaccine?

You can find have your dog vaccinated for Bordetella in many different places, including at your local veterinarian’s office, the animal shelter, and in many pet stores. It is important for you to check with these locations about which vaccine they offer as some may only have certain brands or types of the vaccine available. 

The type of Bordetella vaccine will differ from location to location because there are many different manufacturers that produce this product. To find out if your dog needs a certain type of Bordetella vaccine, consult with your veterinarian before purchasing it from another source.

Saving Money on Pet Vaccines is Easier than Ever

For many pet parents or people with multiple dogs, affording vaccines and preventative care can get costly. That’s where Fursure comes in. We’re dedicated to making all pet care affordable and attainable. All you have to do is take advantage of your Fursure Card when making purchases for your pet. Every pet purchase earns you 5x the points, including money spent on pet grooming, boarding, training, and toys!


Once you’re ready for a vet visit (like, to get your dog vaccinated against Bordetella), your points can be used to cover the associated fees. It’s a double win for your pet and your pocket! And, everyone qualifies for a Fursure card: there are no credit checks required. Sign up to get your free Fursure Card and start saving on all your pet’s health care today. 

No items found.