Dog Vaccines

Standard Annual Dog Vaccines

  • Rabies
  • DHPP (this is a combination vaccine for Distemper, Adenovirus, Parainfluenza and Parvovirus)
  • Lepto
  • Bordetella

Below is more detailed information about the diseases these vaccines protect against:

Rabies Virus – (required by law)

Rabies is a 100% fatal disease. Because there is no effective treatment and the disease can also kill humans, vaccination is required by law throughout the United States and many other countries. Each city or county may have their own requirement as to the frequency of vaccination. Most municipalities require yearly vaccination while some will accept a 3-year vaccination. River Oaks, Weswtwoth Village and Sansom Park all require an annual rabies vaccine. Check with your city of residence for their requirements.

Puppies should receive their first rabies vaccine at 12-16 weeks of age.

Animals suspected of having rabies or who bite (or even scratch) a person and don’t have proof of current rabies vaccination
will often be euthanized or quarantined at the owner’s expense. The only way to diagnose rabies is to examine the brain, which requires euthanasia.

Canine Distemper Virus – (All dogs need this vaccine)

Infection with this virus is nearly 50% fatal in young, untreated dogs. It attacks the respiratory, digestive and central nervous systems. Puppies should get their first vaccination for distemper at 7-8 weeks of age, followed by 2 booster shots. Adults are vaccinated once a year.

Canine Parvovirus (Parvo) – (All dogs need this vaccine)

Parvo in dogs is highly contagious and is nearly 90% fatal if not aggressively treated (and is 50% fatal even with treatment). Puppies and young dogs are the most severely affected. The virus attacks the digestive and immune systems, causing debilitating fever, diarrhea and vomiting. Infected adult dogs may not develop the disease but can easily infect puppies and young dogs.

Parvo is VERY prevalent in our area and the virus can survive in the environment (yard, house, etc) for years. An unvaccinated puppy has a very high chance of contracting the virus and dying from it. It is crucial for puppies get their first vaccination for Parvo at 7-8 weeks of age, followed by 2 booster shots. Adults are vaccinated once a year.

Bordetella (Kennel Cough) – (Most dogs should get this vaccine)

Bordetella is one of the infectious agents that causes “kennel cough”. Kennel cough is a highly contagious respiratory illness between dogs. Infected animals develop a chronic hacking cough and low-grade, persistent illness. The Bordetella vaccine helps protect against this infection. This vaccine is given twice to puppies and then every 6 months thereafter.

Because it is so contagious, this vaccine is almost always required for any boarding, grooming, daycare or training facility.

Leptospirosis – (Most dogs should get this vaccine)

Lepto is caused by a bacteria spread through soil, water and the urine of infected animals (most commonly raccoons, opossums and rodents). Infected pets develop liver disease and renal failure. This disease is often fatal if not diagnosed and treated early. Leptospirosis is also transmittable to humans and can cause severe health issues. Puppies are vaccinated twice and then once a year as an adult.

Parainfluenza (Canine Flu) – (Most dogs should get this vaccine)

This virus causes a mild to moderate respiratory infection and low-grade illness in dogs. It is another agent associated with “kennel cough”. This vaccine is usually given once a year.

Lyme Disease (Dogs exposed to high tick areas should get this vaccine)

This disease is transmitted through tick bites. It causes fever, joint pain, lameness, loss of appetite and lethargy. This disease usually responds well to treatment. Dogs with increased exposure to ticks should always be treated with a topical tick product to prevent tick bites.


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