Healthy dogs with low antibody titer to Bordetella bronchiseptica were vaccinated intranasally with an avirulent live vaccine, subcutaneously with an antigen extract vaccine, or subcutaneously and intranasally with a placebo. Intranasally vaccinated dogs developed B. bronchiseptica-specific IgA titers in nasal secretions that remained at high levels until the end of the study; dogs vaccinated subcutaneously with the antigen extract or placebo did not develop measurable antigen-specific IgA titers in nasal secretions. Dogs were challenged with virulent live B. bronchiseptica 63 days after vaccination. Intranasally vaccinated dogs had significantly lower cough scores (P < or =.0058) and shed significantly fewer challenge organisms (P <.0001) than dogs in either of the other groups. Cough scores of subcutaneously vaccinated dogs were not significantly different from placebo-vaccinated dogs.