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The first veterinary appointment you’ll most likely make for your new furry friend will be for a health check and their first round of puppy vaccinations.
Any time your pup comes in contact with another animal, or an animal feces, there is a risk of infection. But, most common infections and diseases can usually be prevented with a few puppy vaccinations.
Before your puppy can begin socialization, they will need to be vaccinated, and these tend to vary depending on your:
- Types of wild animals common near you
- The activities your dog will be performing (working dogs may need extra puppy vaccinations for working with livestock etc.)
- Your dog’s breed.
Puppy vaccinations will lessen this risk by allowing your pup to build up a strong immunity, but this schedule needs to be maintained.
Here are some of the puppy vaccinations your vet may recommend, and the age that you can expect to get them.
(Follows a schedule of four shots: 6-8 weeks, 9-11 weeks, 12-14 weeks, 16-17 weeks)
This is a combination vaccine and is the easiest way to protect your puppy from six different viruses.
Distemper – This attacks the intestines, lungs, and nervous system. There is no cure. It can be passed through saliva, feces, coughing, and sneezing. Death can occur.
Hepatitis – A highly contagious virus that attacks the liver, kidneys, spleen, lungs, and eyes. Death can occur in aggressive cases.
Leptospirosis – A bacterial infection found worldwide that can be transferred from animal to human and is treated with antibiotics.
Parvovirus – This is extremely contagious. Due to dehydration caused by vomiting and diarrhea, within 48-72 hours, parvo can be fatal to puppies under the age of four months.
Parainfluenza – This is a virus which can cause kennel cough. Some complications can become fatal in older dogs or dogs with poor immune systems.
Coronavirus – This normally affects a puppy’s intestinal tract but can also infect the lungs. Coronavirus can usually be treated with antibiotics.
(Vaccinate at 16 weeks)
This virus affects the central nervous system and is often transferred through the bite of an infected animal. Rabies can be transferred to humans, and if left untreated within the first couple hours, it can cause death.
(Vaccinate at 14 weeks)
This virus can cause an infection commonly called kennel cough. Kennel cough spreads quickly through the air and shared living spaces. If your puppy will be spending time in doggie daycare or kennels, it is highly recommended.
(Vaccinate at 14 weeks and 17 weeks)
This is a tick-borne bacterial illness that can infect any part of your puppy’s skeletal system as well as their organs and nervous system. Left untreated, it can cause a variety of symptoms. Though not usually fatal, lyme disease can progress quickly.
Many of these puppy vaccinations are given together, so you’ll usually only need to book 2 (sometimes 3) appointments.
Once all your puppy’s vaccinations have been completed, you will feel much better about their health and wellness. Let the socialisation begin!
*Note: These are subject to change as medical advancements are constantly made. Always speak to your veterinarian about puppy vaccinations and what your growing pup needs.