When you adopt a new puppy or dog, it is imperative to insure that it has the necessary vaccinations and to follow the set vaccination schedule. Vaccination not only maintains the health of your dogs and those it encounters, but is also mandated by law in many jurisdictions. Various dog vaccinations are considered either “core,” meaning they are necessary for every dog, or “noncore,” meaning they may benefit your dog, depending on the breed and your routine. While veterinarians generally administer core vaccines regardless of age, health, and breed, these considerations play an important role in deciding whether noncore vaccines should be administered. Other factors include the dog’s exposure to other animals and geographic area.
Canine Distemper, Parvovirus, Hepatitis, and Rabies comprise the core vaccinations. Noncore vaccinations include Measles, Bordetella, Lyme, Coronavirus, Parainfluenza, and Leptospirosis. Other vaccines may be necessary; be sure to ask your veterinarian. When a puppy is about five weeks old, it receives the Parvovirus vaccine, especially if it is at high risk. A few weeks later, veterinarians administer a combination vaccine that covers adenovirus, hepatitis, distemper, parainfluenza, and parvovirus. Some may also include vaccines against leptospirosis and coronavirus. Puppies are vaccinated at 12-weeks old against rabies and may receive other non-core vaccines depending on location and risk. Adult dogs require regular boosters for rabies, lyme, coronavirus, leptospirosis, and the combination vaccine. Since different varieties of vaccines last for varying periods, you must consult your veterinarian as soon as possible to create a vaccination schedule. This schedule will help keep your dog healthy throughout its life.
For more information about vaccinations or to bring your dog in for new vaccines or boosters, contact Elmhurst Animal Care Center.