Ideally taking place at 8, 12 and 16 weeks of age, booster vaccinations are crucial in assuring your puppy will have a healthy and happy start in life. Every veterinarian will have a preferred protocol for vaccinating puppies, in addition, protocols change because of new research.

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What vaccinations do you offer to new puppies?

Here are at North Town Veterinary Hospital, our first puppy consult consist of a full head to toe examination by one of our veterinarians, core vaccines (DAPP), complimentary nail trim, and a question and answer session with one of our veterinary technicians. We will also provide you with a puppy kit to take home.

Why is it important to properly vaccinate your puppy?

Vaccines are what we use to force the body to create an immune reaction and antibodies to a particular disease. This trigger of the immune system helps prevent future infection, should the animal come in contact with that disease. It is generally recommended to start vaccinating puppies at the age of 8-weeks-old. While they do get some antibodies from their mother’s milk, it doesn’t protect them for very long, this is why we start vaccines at 8 weeks of age, which helps to compensate. Puppies require a series of vaccines because it is difficult to tell exactly when the mother’s antibodies cease to be effective. This way we prevent there from being a large period of time where they aren’t protected at all. Vaccines are often combined to make it less stressful on your pet. For smaller breeds, we sometimes split the vaccines 1 week apart. If you are starting off late, you will still need to booster the vaccines, which means to get another vaccination of the same type 3 to 4 weeks later.

What is an appropriate schedule for puppy vaccinations?

  • 8 Week (1st set): DHPP
  • 12 Week (2nd set): DHPP, leptospirosis, discretionary bordetella, discretionary Lyme
  • 16 Week (3rd set): DHPP, rabies, leptospirosis, discretionary bordetella, discretionary Lyme

How should you prepare your puppy for its first vaccination visit?

Yay, you got a new puppy! Now it is time to get him or her to the veterinarian for vaccines. How do you prepare? Firstly, make sure the timing is right. Puppies should have their first vaccines at about 8-weeks-old, but many breeders, rescues and shelters provide the first vaccine for you. You should have a health record that you were given with the puppy, which should tell you if this has been done. If so, get ready for the 12-week boosters! Secondly, educate yourself. What does DHPP stand for? Why is deworming recommended for all puppies? What is Leptospirosis and how can my dog contract it?  Why is the Bordetella (kennel cough) vaccine recommended, but not required?  Does my dog need the Lyme vaccine? That way, you can be more knowledgeable and involved in your puppy’s veterinary visit, and know what questions to ask.

And speaking of questions, get them ready. Write down any concerns you might have with a new puppy. We can answer anything from why he may be itchy, to how to get house training down pat, and how to stop her from chewing everything in sight! Our veterinarians and veterinary technicians can help get you started on the right foot with your new family member!

How much do puppy vaccinations cost?

Core vaccines include a full physical exam, a complimentary nail trim, DHPP, Lepto and when it is time to administer, rabies. Based on the history and lifestyle of your new puppy, your doctor may recommend bordetella (often heard as kennel cough), for an additional fee. Please feel free to contact us at any time and we will be happy to assist you in creating a vaccine schedule for your pet, as well as a quote for your visit.

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