AETIOLOGY: Canine parainfluenza virus (CPIV)

This virus is considered an important cause of kennel cough in the USA and is commonly isolated from outbreaks of the disease. It has also been identified in cases of the disease in Britain, although there is some evidence that it is not as important a cause as B. bronchiseptica. Experimentally, the disease is only very mild or subclinical, but in the field, CPIV infection may predispose to combined infections with other viral and/or bacterial agents leading to more typical signs of kennel cough.

The virus replicates mainly in the epithelial cells of the nasal mucosa, pharynx trachea, large bronchi, and regional lymph nodes, and generalised infection does not occur, except in immunocompromised animals. There may be histopathological lesions in the lung, but these are not important clinically, except where secondary bacterial infection occurs.

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