Your cute canine is your loyal friend and protector.
But, did you do something to protect your protector?
If not already, do it now.
As a caring dog owner, your first responsibility is to take care of your pet’s health and wellness.
And keeping dog vaccinations up-to-date is vital for your cub to be healthy, happy, and energetic.
So, what dog vaccination is all about?
And what best they do to your pet’s health?
We are happy to help you understand why and which dog vaccinations are necessary for your canine.
Let’s find out.
About Dog Vaccinations
Vaccinations are biological preparations used to protect dogs from dangerous illness and even fatal diseases.
Non-vaccinated dogs are susceptible to a host of severe diseases, including rabies, canine hepatitis, parvovirus, distemper, and more.
Though state law requires dog vaccinations against rabies, there are some other vaccinations to protect your dog from diseases.
What Do Vaccines Do?
Vaccines prepare a dog’s immune system to fight against disease-causing microbes.
These vaccines contain antigens, which kill or weaken microbes. When your pup receives vaccines, its immune system gets mild stimulation to recognize the presence of antigens. However, these antigens don’t cause disease itself.
Simply put; vaccines help dog’s immune system to recognize antigens and fight off real-diseases.
What Core Vaccines are Important for Your Dog?
It may seem like an inconvenience to visit your vet continuously over several months. But these vaccines ultimately protect your canine against deadly diseases.
Core vaccinations are vital for all dogs and puppies to protect them against severe diseases. Moreover, they are based on the risk of disease transmission to other animals and humans, and universal risk of disease exposure.
According to a report by the American Animal Association’s Canine Task Force, following dog vaccinations are core.
- Canine Distemper
The distemper vaccines protect against distemper disease, spreading through airborne contact from other infected animals. Distemper causing virus attacks the gastrointestinal and nervous system of dogs, skunks, and other animals.
Dogs usually receive distemper vaccination at the age of 6-8 weeks. The second shot is given at the age of 10-12 weeks, following the next shot at 14-16 weeks.
A booster shot is administered after 12 months or three years.
- Canine Parvovirus
Protects against highly contagious virus that attacks respiratory gastrointestinal of dog, and causes loss of appetite, fever, bloody diarrhea, and vomiting.
The first shot is given to six weeks old puppies. Subsequent shots are administrated in 2-4weeks interval until the age of 16 weeks.
- Canine Hepatitis
Fight off a viral infection that damages the lungs, kidneys, eyes, and liver of the infected dog.
It is hoped that the dogs’ immune system can fight off mild disease. However, severity may lead to death.
Usually injected at the age of 6-8 years old, following second shot at 10-12 years old, and third at 14-16 weeks.
A booster is given at the interval of 1 or 3 years.
Rabies is one the most core vaccine for dogs, protecting them against rabies disease. Rabies causes hallucinations, anxiety, headache, excessive drooling, paralysis, and may also lead to death.
Twelve weeks old puppies usually receive the first shot of rabies vaccination. The second shot is given within one year after the initial injection.
Following boosters can be given with the gap of a year or three years.
Non-core vaccines include:
- Canine Influenza. Protects against one of the many viruses, contributing to kennel cough.
- Bordetella. Fights off the infectious bacterium, causing whooping, coughing and vomiting.
- Lyme Vaccine. Protects against infectious disease, causing temperature rise, appetite loss, lymph nodes swell, and more.
- Leptospirosis. Fights off bacterium leptospirosis, causing fever, diarrhea, abdominal pain, jaundice, stiffness, loss of appetite, kidney failure, and more.
Things to Consider before giving Non-core Vaccination
Age. Administrating vaccinations too young or too old is risky. Young puppies have a weak immune system, so the shot of antigen at a quite young age can affect their body.
Likewise, elderly canines often have a compromised immune system. So, ask your vet what the best age for your pup to receive non-core vaccines is.
The number of shots. Another important consideration is how many vaccination shots your puppy should receive? Giving excessive boosters can have side effects. So, keep the number appropriate.
Dog size. Is your dog healthy enough to handle a vaccination? If your canine is malnourished, wait on administrating non-core vaccinations.
Vaccination history. If your puppy has a negative impact from previous vaccinations, your vet may decide to hold on giving non-core vaccines.
Always consult your vet for advice on dog’s vaccination. Together you can make a better decision to keep your canine friend healthy, happy, and active.