A Guide To Vaccinating Your Dog: Find Out What Shots Your Pet Should Be Getting And When

Posted on: 9 April 2015

The topic of dog vaccinations is a hot topic among vets and pet owners, as there is now quite a bit of controversy surrounding what shots a dog should receive and how often these shots should be administered. While specific advice will often vary from one vet to the next, there are a few things that remain constant. These constants are the need for a DHPP vaccination and rabies vaccination.

DHPP Vaccinations

DHPP stands for distemper, hepatitis, parainfluenza, and parvovirus. This vaccination is arguably the most important vaccination that your dog will receive, as it safeguards them against four of the most common illness to affect canines.

Your puppy's first DHPP shot should be administered between 6-8 weeks of age. After this initial vaccination, you will need to return to the vet to have a booster shot administered every three weeks until the puppy reaches four months of age. Your pet will not require another DHPP vaccination until they reach one year old. After their first birthday, your pet will simply require a booster shot every three years in order to ensure they remain protected.

Rabies Vaccinations

Many states require that all dogs be vaccinated against rabies. This requirement is not only to protect the health of your pet, but to protect the health of the people in your community as well, since rabies is one of the few diseases that can be passed from dogs to humans.

Your dog should receive their first rabies vaccination around 12 weeks of age. If your pet is older than this, there is no need to worry. Rabies vaccinations can be given at any time after the dog reaches 12 weeks.

A second dose of the rabies vaccination should be given one year after the first dose. Subsequent does should then be given every three years in order to ensure that your dog remains protected against this potentially deadly virus.

Controversial Vaccinations

There are many other vaccinations that your dog can receive. For instance, you can choose to vaccinate against Lyme disease, bordetella, leptospirosis, and many other less common illnesses. In most cases, the area where you live, your dog's exposure to other animals, and your dog's breed will have a huge impact on whether or not the risks that come along with these vaccinations will outweigh the benefits of immunizing your pet. Therefore, you should always consult a reputable veterinarian before making any decision regarding these less common, and often controversial vaccinations.

For more information, contact Basking Ridge Animal Hospital or a similar location.


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