Source: the F.E. Warren Air Force Base site
Getting a new puppy is an exciting event for the entire family, that’s for sure. But, besides being happy about getting a loyal companion and great playmate for your children, you should also know that once the puppy enters your home, you become its responsible owner. This means that your dog will need periodic checkups at the vet, vaccines, de-worming, anti-flea, and anti-tick treatments. Doing all these will not just ensure a long and healthy life for your dog, but will also keep everyone safe.
While it may be awkward for you to make so many trips to the vet’s office, especially in the first year of your dog, keep in mind that prevention is better than treating an illness. Every vaccine done in an early manner will save you significant amounts of money that would be spent in case of a disease.
If you either adopt your doggo from the shelter or you opt for a small breed puppy for sale, the vaccines are the same.
Having said all these, what are the vaccines a dog should do and how early should the vaccination scheme begin? In the case of dogs, the first vaccine can be administered as early as 6 weeks old, which means less than two months of life. Now, most reliable breeders will recommend taking a puppy away from its mother and siblings no early than 8 weeks old. So, it would be ideal if you can talk with the breeder about this aspect.
Some breeders prefer giving their puppies their first vaccine before handing them to their new families. Thus, when you will take your puppy home, the little one will already have the first vaccine done. But, in the following few months, your dog should go through three more vaccines, besides the first one. If you decide to take the puppy home at 6 weeks, then you will have to do the first vaccine yourself. Of course, this can also be the case of puppies of 8 weeks old, if the breeder did not do the first vaccine.
So, it is recommended to take the puppy for the first visit to the vet before taking it home or, at least, the next day. This way you will know precisely when you have to do a vaccine, as the vet will present you the vaccination scheme and will schedule you for future appointments. Also, the puppy will receive de-worming treatments and everything else needed for its age. Your dog will also be weighed and taken into observation by the vet, who will check to see with every visit you will pay if your dog is developing correctly.
The 4 Most Important Vaccines
Now, because we decided to talk about vaccines in this article, it’s time for you to know what are the core vaccines, the ones that must be done, and non-core vaccines, which are the optional ones. The core vaccines must be administered as they are meant to prevent severe and contagious diseases. If a puppy does not receive these vaccines, it may lose its life due to one of these diseases.
Therefore, one of the vaccines will be made for distemper, a highly contagious and, in many cases, a disease that can be fatal, as it affects the nervous and respiratory system of a dog. Another vaccine will be administered for parvovirus, which is a virus that affects the digestive system of the dog, causing severe diarrhea, vomiting, and other symptoms, and can seriously threaten the dog’s life through dehydration. A third vaccine is applied for adenovirus, a severe viral infection that can significantly damage the dog’s liver. And, finally, the last of the core vaccines is done for rabies, a disease that can be fatal as it targets the dog’s brain. As you may know, the rabies virus can pass to humans through the saliva of the dog, if a person is bitten by an infected dog.
As you can see, it is very important to make sure that your dog gets all these core vaccines, as indicated by the veterinarian. Once they are all done, you will have to come back only once a year for vaccines. You see, the doses of vaccines must be renewed yearly in order for them to remain active and protect your dog as they should. But, don’t worry, as you will manage to solve this problem with one single visit to the vet’s office. So, the biggest amount of effort from your side, as a dog owner, will be in the first year of your dog’s life, when you will have to see the vet’s office more often. After the mandatory vaccination scheme is completed and if your dog gets plenty of exercises and a healthy diet, you will only see your vet once a year. Or, for some cases, maybe even not that often (http://www.pethealthnetwork.com/dog-health/dog-checkups-preventive-care/what-vaccinations-does-my-adult-dog-need).
Making sure that your dog receives all the vaccines it needs is a small effort to make sure that it will stay safe from any disease and will be the reliable companion you were looking to enjoy. Considering that vet bills can be rather high in case of disease, vaccination is the best thing you can do for the safety and health of your dog.
About the author:
Jason Goldstein works as a Marketing Specialist for Premier Pups. He takes great pride in partnering with the best certified breeders in Ohio to offer the highest quality, cutest puppies for adoption. He looks forward to sharing his love for pets with people through the agency.