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Dog vaccinations: Everything owners must know

Dog vaccinations: Everything owners must know

Vaccinating your dog is crucial for their health and protection from infectious diseases. Knowing the types and timing of vaccines, as well as associated risks, is important. Our veterinarians at Baton Rouge can provide comprehensive information about vaccinating your dog.

What exactly are dog vaccinations?

Dog vaccinations are given through injections, starting in the puppy stage and continuing into adulthood. The type and number of vaccines depend on the dog's lifestyle and age.

The vaccine introduces a small amount of a virus particle to stimulate an immune response in the body, which protects the dog from becoming sick if exposed to the virus or bacteria in the future.

This helps the body fight off the infection and prevents the dog from getting sick.

Does the law require vaccinations?

The law requires dogs and cats to be vaccinated against rabies, a fatal human zoonotic disease. Some states mandate both pets be vaccinated, while others exempt dogs. However, all pets need to be vaccinated as rabies can be contracted from different wildlife forms. Vaccinating against rabies is crucial to ensure both pets' and humans' health and safety.

Does my dog's lifestyle factor into what vaccination they could get?

The recommended core vaccines for dogs include parvo, distemper, and rabies. However, additional vaccines like Bordetella and flu vaccines may be necessary depending on the dog's lifestyle, such as frequent visits to dog parks or boarding facilities.

Leptospirosis is also a zoonotic disease transmitted through wildlife urine, especially rats. The risk of exposure depends on the dog's lifestyle and location.

Our recommendations for additional vaccines will depend on the individual dog's lifestyle to ensure maximum protection.

How soon should I get m dog vaccinated? 

We recommend vaccinating puppies at seven to eight weeks old since they cannot develop a long-term immune response until about four months old.

Regardless of age, puppies should be vaccinated every three weeks until they reach four months old.

Please refer to the vaccination schedule we have provided for puppies and adult dogs below.

Vaccination Schedule for Puppies & Adult Dogs

Puppy Shot Schedule

6 - 8 Weeks
  • *DHPP Shot 1
  • Bordatella
  • Leptospira
  • Lyme
  • Influenza Virus-H3N8
  • Influenza Virus-H3N2
10 - 12 Weeks
  • Influenza Virus-H3N8
  • Influenza Virus-H3N2
  • DHPP Shot 2
  • Leptospira
  • Lyme
  • Rabies
14 - 16 Weeks
  • DHPP Shot 3

Adult Dog Vaccination Schedule

  • Bordatella
  • Leptospira
  • Lyme
  • Rabies
  • Influenza Virus-H3N8
  • Influenza Virus-H3N2
Every 3 Years
  • DHPP Booster
  • Rabies

*DHPP: this vaccine protects against Distemper, Adenovirus, Parainfluenza, and Parvovirus.

Age Restrictions

Speak to your vet to learn which vaccines are appropriate for your dog. Very young puppies and senior dogs with compromised immune systems are not eligible for all shots.

Possible Side Effects of Dog Vaccines

Some dogs may have an allergic reaction to getting their shots. This is typically due to a sensitivity to an individual ingredient of a specific vaccine. Different breeds tend to react to some ingredients.

German shepherds, various collies, and some sheepdogs are known to be sensitive to individual vaccinations. Your vet will skip any vaccines containing ingredients your dog may be sensitive to.

Is it safe to get multiple dog vaccinations at the same time?

Most dogs tolerate receiving multiple vaccines simultaneously, similar to how babies receive multiple vaccines as newborns.

In rare cases, a dog may be more sensitive to vaccines, and we may adjust the vaccination process accordingly. We can preempt or spread the vaccines for such dogs or address specific client concerns.

The Bottom Line on Dog Vaccines

Vaccinations are a key element of your dog's preventive health care. By taking your dog in for his/her shots early in life, then regularly as they move through adulthood, you give your furry friend the very best chance of living a long and healthy life.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

If you have any questions about your dog's vaccinations, please get in touch with our veterinarians at Baton Rouge through Kleinpeter Veterinary Hospital. We are always available to address your concerns and answer any questions you may have.

New Patients Welcome

Kleinpeter Veterinary Hospital is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of Baton Rouge companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

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