Puppies require a series of vaccinations, in order to stimulate an appropriate response from their developing immune system.
The following vaccinations are considered CORE vaccines (recommended for every dog):
DA2P - A combination vaccine that protects against canine distemper, Adenovirus type 2, and parvovirus. Given at 6, 9, 12, and 16 weeks of age.
Rabies - Required by law, and should be given after 12 weeks of age and before 6 months of age
There are several other vaccinations that are considered based on risk factors your dog may be exposed to. Some of them are as follows:
Leptospirosis- This protects against a bacterial infection that can cause liver and kidney failure in your pet, and is a zoonotic disease (your pet can transmit the disease to you). At the Animal Health Center, we STRONGLY recommend every dog be vaccinated against leptospirosis. We include this in combination with DA2P in the 12 and 16-week puppy vaccines.
Coronavirus- A gastrointestinal virus, this disease is similar to parvovirus, and though not usually quite as severe, can still prove fatal. We believe every puppy should be vaccinated against this, and include it in the 6 and 9-week vaccines.
Bordetella- Also known as kennel cough, this vaccination is generally required if your puppy will be going to the groomer or boarding facility. It is also an excellent idea to give this vaccination if you will be attending any puppy training classes.
Lyme - Lyme disease is transmitted by ticks, and dogs who run in the woods or on larger properties with a tick burden, as well as hunting dogs are at increased risk. This requires two vaccinations 4 weeks apart.
Canine influenza - This vaccination is sometimes required if your puppy will be going to the groomer or boarding facility. This requires two vaccinations 4 weeks apart.
After the initial puppy series, vaccinations are boostered one year later.
Puppies should receive regular deworming beginning between 2 and 4 weeks of age and continued for no fewer than 2 to 3 rounds of appropriate deworming medication, such as pyrantel or fenbendazole.
It is an excellent idea to bring a fresh stool sample with you to the first visit for your puppy. Not all deworming will eliminate all the possible parasites your pup could have. We will examine it under the microscope to look for evidence of worms and other parasites. Then we can treat accordingly, if necessary.
The first visit is also an excellent time to start on heartworm prevention if you haven’t already. Heartworms are fairly prevalent in Missouri, and year-round prevention is required to adequately protect your puppy. Any dog over 7 months of age must be tested before starting heartworm prevention to ensure they are free of disease. Not testing can lead to serious side effects, and potentially death if they are infected. While young, there are two options for how to administer the preventative: topical (on the skin of the back of the neck) and oral (a chewable tablet). Once a dog is full grown and over 6 months old, there is also an injectable option, which lasts for 6 months. Many preventatives have the added bonus of treating for an intestinal parasite.
The last thing we will want to get started on your puppy’s first visit is flea and tick prevention. In Missouri, we see fleas and ticks throughout the year and therefore recommend treating year-round, as with heartworm prevention. We can use topical, oral or collar prevention for fleas and ticks, depending on age and weight. The different options can work for 4 weeks, 12 weeks, or 8 months.
We look forward to getting your puppy’s care off on the right foot and helping you select the appropriate vaccinations, deworming and preventatives for your new family member!
Animal Health Center of Rolla
1854 Highway 72 East
Rolla, MO 65401Request Appointment
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Monday 7:30am - 5:00pm
Tuesday 7:30am - 6:00pm
Wednesday 7:30am - 6:00pm
Thursday 7:30am - 6:00pm
Friday 7:30am - 5:00pm