Initially puppies are provided immunity by antibodies provided to them through their mother’s milk. These antibodies begin to diminish sometime between 6 and 12 weeks of age. It is at this time that you want to begin the vaccine process. We generally recommend beginning with the first round of vaccines at 8 weeks of age and boostering your pet once monthly for a total of three rounds of vaccinations. No vaccine comes with a 100% guarantee, but proper care and vaccinations can greatly reduce the risk to your pet.
Here at Family Pet Hospital we vaccinate our canine companions for the following.
Canine Distemper Vaccination
Canine Distemper Virus affects the respiratory tract, gastrointestinal tract, and neurological system. It is spread when an unvaccinated pet inhales virus particles left behind by an infected pet. Initial clinical signs mimic that of a cold with fever, decreased activity, decreased appetite, cough, and discharge from the eyes and/or nose. Even with appropriate treatment, clinical signs often progress to include vomiting, diarrhea, and a variety of neurologic signs. Vaccination against this virus is recommended as infection is often fatal.
Infectious Canine Hepatitis Vaccination
Infectious Canine Hepatitis is caused by Canine Adenovirus Type 1 and is spread via contact with secretions (saliva, urine, feces) from an infected dog. Signs begin with fever, depression, and decreased activity, but can progress to abdominal discomfort, vomiting, diarrhea, bruises, and neurologic signs. Infections with this virus can run from mild to fatal. Vaccination is the best mode of protection.
Canine Parvovirus Vaccination
Canine Parvovirus is transmitted when unvaccinated dogs come in contact with contaminated feces. Initially pets have decreased appetite and activity. However, it can quickly progress to retractable vomiting and profuse bloody diarrhea. Even with hospitalization and aggressive treatment, often puppies infected with Parvovirus don’t survive. The cornerstone of preventions of Parvovirus is vaccination.
Canine Tracheobronchitis (Kennel Cough) Vaccination
There are numerous causative agents of “Kennel Cough.” We currently vaccinate dogs for the three most common agents: Parainfluenza, Adenovirus Type 2, & Bordetella. Clinical signs are typically a hacking cough/gag and nasal discharge. Although infection is not terminal, it can be avoided or greatly reduced with proper vaccination.
Rabies virus in transmitted when your pet it bitten by an infected animals. The main animals which transmit this virus are: foxes, skunks, raccoons, and especially bats. Symptoms begin with behavioral changes and can progress to aggression, paralysis, seizures, and eventually death. There is no treatment for rabies, and an infected pet poses a risk of infection to the owner. Arizona requires your pet be vaccinated to help prevent the spread of this virus.
Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection that is transmitted via contact with an infected animal’s urine. “Lepto” can be transmitted from dog-to-dog or wildlife-to-dog (especially rodents). Symptoms include, but are not limited to, fever, lack of appetite, lethargy, vomiting, increased drinking, and increased urination. Treatment is possible, but not always effective as this bacterial infection can result in end stage kidney failure. Vaccination is recommended for prevention of this disease.