The places your puppy can go to and the friends they can make, both canine and human, are influenced by the dog vaccinations they have.
If you’re a new dog parent, you may be frazzled by all the care that young pups need. To help you out, we’ve put together this overview of the vaccinations puppies need during their first few months of life, as well as why and when.
Once you understand the urgency of dog shots, you can discuss with your veterinarian to ensure that your fur baby is as safe as they can be from illnesses that can harm them or your family.
So, Why are Dog Vaccinations a Big Deal?
The American Veterinary Medical Association claims there are five important reasons why every dog needs shots:
- Vaccinations prevent most pet illnesses.
- Vaccinations can help keep expensive treatments at bay for preventable illnesses.
- Vaccinations combat diseases that can be passed between animals as well as from animals to humans.
- Diseases common in the wild, such as rabies and distemper, can infect unvaccinated pups.
- In several regions, county or state ordinances require certain vaccinations for household pets.
It’s important to note that many young animals are vulnerable to infectious diseases because their immune system hasn’t developed. Essentially, the quicker your vaccinate your pup, the faster they can get to living their best life. Stay tuned to find out which vaccinations your dog needs to stay as healthy as possible.
Vaccines at 6-8 Weeks of Age
In many instances, your pup will have already received some of these vaccines before you invite them into their new home. Ask the people or organization you’re picking up your puppy from if they’ve already vaccinated them and when. This information is crucial for your vet to have so that they can best structure your pup’s first vaccination series. All of these shots must be given in a series of “initial” vaccines followed by “booster” shots.
Your puppy may receive the following vaccinations:
DA2P, AKA the “Parvo” or “Distemper” shot: This vaccine protects against Distemper, Adenovirus (Canine Infectious Hepatitis), and “Parvo.” Alternatively, it may be administered as a DA2PP, which is similar but also includes protection against Parainfluenza.
Bordetella, AKA “Kennel Cough” shot: An initial vaccine can be given to your pup at this age, depending on the vaccination type (oral, intranasal, or injectable).
Canine Influenza Virus, AKA “Dog Flug” shot: This vaccine has two different types, each protecting against a different strain of dog flu. Your fur baby will have to receive a booster shot approximately three weeks after this one to maximize their protection.
After this vaccine visit, your pup will be able to do the following:
Attend puppy classes: If their Bordetella and DA2P shots have been administered and they aren’t showing signs of sickness, they can start their puppy classes one week after their shot (if you choose to enroll them). However, the dog school must be regularly cleaned and meet safety requirements, and every dog must also be vaccinated and dewormed.
Make (a few) friends: Your pup can start to meet other known and healthy puppies and mature dogs. However, it still isn’t safe for them to go on sidewalks or into pet stores, parks, groomers, and other areas with unknown dogs and people.
Vaccines at 9-12 Weeks of Age
Depending on your fur baby’s age when you first got them, this might either be their first visit to the vet or second. Regardless, this is a visit you won’t want to miss. They’ll need to get the following shots if they haven’t already:
Once they receive these dog vaccinations, they’ll be able to begin puppy classes and play with known dogs, if they haven’t already. Similar to the 6-8 week guideline range, however, your pup should still avoid being around strangers. At the same time, your dog will now gain the ability to have quick socialization visits.
For example, a fast socialization visit to the groomer is fine as long as the shop is spotless, and there haven’t been any sick dogs visiting recently. This is a great way of making sure your dog receives some much-needed social interaction without the risk of contagious dog illnesses.
Vaccines at 12-16 Weeks of Age
At this age, your pup’s maternal immunity will lessen as their own immune system becomes more developed. Booster shots will be a must at their next vet visit to build their immunity and protect them from diseases. In addition to the DA2P, Bordetella, and Canine Influenza Virus shots, your fur baby will need the following:
Rabies shot: Your dog will be eligible to receive this vaccination once they’re over 13 weeks old. Local regulations determine the age by which all dogs must be vaccinated against rabies.
Leptospirosis, AKA “Lepto” shot: This vaccine is part of a two-part series of shots that a dog must receive in their first year of life. Sadly, since Lepto is harmful to both your precious fur baby and you, your pup will need to get this vaccination as soon as possible.
Once your sweet puppy has received these shots, they’ll be able to do the following:
Play with unknown dogs: Your dog can expand their circle of friends to include dogs they don’t know, which includes ones they would meet on a walk. Still, you’ll have to make sure that your friendly fur child doesn’t befriend too many dogs in one go because it still isn’t safe for them to hang out in big circles.
Visit fun places: Congrats, your dog can now walk on popular streets and visit pet stores! Additionally, they can now have longer socialization visits at their groomer, provided the shop is clean.
It’s important to note that dog socialization is a gradual process, and although they will have most of their vaccines at this age, it still isn’t safe for them to visit dedicated dog parks.
Once your dog has received all their vaccinations, they’ll be able to go wherever their four paws can take them! Ultimately, your furry friend’s health will matter well into adulthood, and they deserve the best care.
Plush Paws Products Offers Complete Daily Multivitamins
In addition to their dog vaccinations, to ensure that your fur baby grows big and strong, you should give them dog-friendly multivitamins. Plush Paws Products has the perfect multivitamins for dogs of any size and breed, packed with vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that promote a healthy fur coat, joints, heart, as well as digestive and immune function. Check out the rest of our shop to spoil your dog with more high-quality, luxurious products!