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Your First Pet: What Injections Does Your Puppy Need?



For anyone em-barking (get it?) on the joys of make sure you’re aware of the need for your pup to have injections and vaccinations.

What Are Vaccines?


You may not know it, but vaccines actually contain a small form of a virus which may cause a particular illness. This helps the body to deal with a particular disease and develop the right antibodies and protection to deal with the vaccine. As your dog’s immune system will know how to react and deal with the vaccine, it will protect your pet and help it fight the disease should it occur in its system. In the long-term this will be hugely beneficial for your four-legged friend.

Why Puppies Need To Get Vaccinated


Whilst young puppies do develop some form of immunity against illness – through antibody-rich milk from their mothers – these maternal antibodies only last for 16 to 20 weeks, dependent on the pup. As such, their immune systems are not developed to the extent of fighting diseases. Therefore, as a dog owner, it’s essential to get yours vaccinated to prevent infection from diseases.

How Does The Vaccination Process Work?


Get signed up with a vet. This isn’t just needed for vaccinations, but to safeguard you should your dog fall ill and to also receive regular treatments for flees and worms. Register with a local practice and check your dog in for its first visit. Here, your vet will be able to devise a care plan and explain what is needed in terms of vaccinations.

Vaccines tend to be administered in stages, whilst others can be combined; don’t worry about any pain your canine-friend may feel – at worse the vaccine will cause a little pinch or sting – which is nothing compared to the painful effects of an illness.

What Vaccines Does My Puppy Need?


Puppies will need a variety of injections, as outlined in the vaccination plan below:































 

Vaccination Plan

Age

CORE

NON-CORE*

6-8 weeks

Distemper
Parvovirus
Hepatitis

Adenovirus
Coronavirus
Leptospirosis
Parainfluenza

9-11 weeks

Distemper
Parvovirus
Hepatitis

Adenovirus
Coronavirus
Leptospirosis
Parainfluenza
Bordetella

12-14 weeks

Rabies
Distemper
Parvovirus
Hepatitis

Adenovirus
Coronavirus
Leptospirosis
Parainfluenza
Lyme

Adult boosters

Depending on your dog and the vet, these will be administered every one to three years.


This is a standard plan, applicable to most common dogs. Please make sure you speak to you vet for your own puppy’s vaccination plan, as this may differ.

At What Age Do I Need To Vaccinate My Puppy?


At about six to eight weeks of age is when vaccines are typically administered. Until your puppy reaches about four months of age, core vaccines should be repeated every three to four weeks. These are known as ‘primary’ and ‘booster’ vaccinations.

It’s worth noting that once a vaccine has been administered it will take five to ten days to become effective, and even then it’s not entirely known if your dog will be truly immune. Therefore, to be absolutely certain of full immunity, wait until your puppy has received all booster injections or until around 4 months of age.

When Can My Puppy Start To Meet Other Animals?


Before your fury friend starts to mix with other animals, make sure it is fully vaccinated. As socialising is essential for a puppies health, it’s worth getting yours to see a vet as soon as possible – you want your puppy out and about playing with other dogs, so make sure yours has either reached four months of age, or has received the full course of injections, as mentioned above. If you’re unsure, ask your vet when yours can start to mix with other animals.

Risks to Consider


First and foremost, the benefits far outweigh the risks when it comes to injections. However, it is important to be aware that there are some risks involved, even though they are uncommon. The majority of side-effects are mild, including swelling and pain of the injection, as well as lethargy and fever.

Even less uncommon are allergic reactions, which can cause hives, swelling, and breathing difficulties. If these occur, please contact your vet immediately.

Also, be warned that if your puppy is suffering from an illness whilst being administered a vaccine, this can actually act as a catalyst and cause more harm than good. So be sure your dog has clean bill of health during any vaccination.

If you are concerned in any way, always speak to your vet first, and make sure you arrange a vaccination plan. Your puppy’s health is the biggest priority at such an early age and you want to make sure it’s ready to fight the common diseases so it can enjoy a happy and fulfilling life.

 

Image Credit:

Dog Vaccination image via Bigstock.

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