Dog and Puppy Vaccinations in Cambridge, Canada
Many serious diseases can be prevented by dog and puppy vaccinations. However, many dogs remain unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated. This is unnecessary and unfortunate for the health of all dogs in Cambridge, who are more likely to be exposed to a serious disease if there are unvaccinated dogs around them. For the sake of your pet's health, as well as that of other pets in the community, it is essential that your dog or puppy remain up to date on their vaccinations.
Core Dog Vaccinations
There are a number of dog vaccinations out there, but only a few are considered "core." Core vaccinations are ones that veterinarians agree all dogs should have, regardless of their age, size, breed, or lifestyle:
- Distemper is a viral infection that is related to human measles. It initially attacks the tonsils and lymph nodes, then spreads throughout the body. Survivors often have neurological damage.
- Parvovirus is a potentially severe, dangerous gastrointestinal virus that is very contagious and lasts for years in the environment. Some dogs who contract parvo only become ill, but many die.
- Adenovirus is responsible for canine hepatitis. It is sometimes referred to as such in combination vaccines (DHP rather than DAP, for example).
- Rabies is a fatal viral infection that attacks the brain. It can be spread between animals and humans and is the only legally required canine vaccine in Ontario.
Lifestyle Dog Vaccinations
The remaining dog vaccinations are considered "lifestyle" vaccinations. This means that they are considered appropriate for certain dogs within a population but not necessarily all of them. For example, a dog who never leaves your backyard may not need a kennel cough vaccine, but a dog who goes to parks and daycare probably does. Veterinarians disagree about whether some of these vaccinations should be used at all, but most are considered appropriate in at least some circumstances:
- Kennel cough/Bordatella
- Canine influenza (not the same as parainfluenza)
- Lyme disease
Puppies are usually given a series of vaccinations in order to provide immunity as early as possible. The series of core puppy vaccinations typically begins at six to eight weeks of age and continues until the puppy is sixteen to twenty weeks old. Doses are given every 3-4 weeks, with a single rabies vaccine being given at about three months of age.
Adult dogs should receive booster shots on a regular basis. Depending on the vaccine, this can be yearly or every three years. Certain vaccinations, such as the intranasal kennel cough vaccine, may be boostered every six months for at least some dogs.
Call Preston Animal Clinic in Cambridge for Dog Vaccinations
Whether your pet is behind on their shots or just needs a booster, call Preston Animal Clinic in Cambridge today. Dog vaccinations are cost-effective, safe, and save lives, and we can provide the appropriate vaccinations for your dog, whatever their age, breed, or lifestyle. To make an appointment, call us at 519-653-7232.