WHAT VACCINES SHOULD MY DOG HAVE AND WHEN?
Puppies should receive their first vaccine at 6-8 weeks of age. If you have a new pup and it is older than 8 weeks it surely needs vaccinations.
While the exact schedule varies from vet to vet, basically pups need vaccinations at 6-8 weeks of age, and then have boosters at 12 and 16 weeks of age. Certain pups, namely Doberman Pinschers, Rottweilers and Pit Bulls should probably have a 4th booster as they can have problems developing complete immunity, especially to parvo.
After the initial series of vaccines, most dogs should receive an annual booster. It is commonly felt that older dogs or dogs which are mostly indoors or dogs which never leave the year are not going to be ill. This is a serious MYTH that should be lost. It is also important that dogs receive their regular check-up at this time. As dogs age more rapidly than people, a lot changes year to year, and this will help to catch problems before they really get out of hand.
The usual vaccines will include Distemper, Parvovirus, Coronavirus, Hepatitis and Parainfluenza. Depending on area, risk or exposure, Lyme disease and Bordatella may be recommended.
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RABIES vaccinations are given first at 4 months of age which is both advisable for the health of the dog, and by law in most states. After that, the dog will receive a booster a year later, then usually every three years after that in most states. Rabies vaccination is required to get your dog licensed, and your veterinarian can assist you with the process. In Maricopa county, once your dog receives it's rabies vaccine, the veterinarian will give you all the paperwork you need to receive the tags by mail.
WHAT ABOUT GIVING MY DOG THEIR OWN SHOTS?
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©2007 James W. Day D.V.M., P.C.