There are 7 main vaccinations that your puppy should receive:
- Canine parvovirus
- Canine Parainfluenza Virus
- Bordetella bronchisepta
The problem with vaccinations is that you do not see the benefits. You can’t actually see your dog fighting off a lethal disease because it has been vaccinated. Remember that the diseases that vaccines protect against are still out there. It’s easy to become complacent when you don’t actually see the pitfalls of not vaccinating. If a few pups miss out on vaccinations, chances are that they may even get through life without an incident, but this is hardly proof that vaccinations aren’t necessary. When many pups in a population do not receive vaccinations then the diseases that are endemic in our society will strike hard, fast and without favour or mercy. The Pilbara is home to many unvaccinated dogs which makes is much more important to keep you pets up to date with their needles.
Parvovirus presents as severe gastroenteritis as it strips the internal lining of the gut causing the infected dog to dehydrate and even haemorrhage. The virus is still a threat with puppies at greatest risk.
Distemper is a virus that hits quickly when contact is made with an unprotected victim. Dogs will present with fever, signs of pneumonia and usually develop severe neurological signs such as seizures. Death is not always the conclusion, but animals that do recover are usually left with permanent defects.
Canine hepatitis is a virus that affects the liver. The function of this organ is drastically impaired so massive supportive therapy is imperative in dogs infected with the virus.
Vaccines from these 3 diseases are essential (C3 vac) and commence around 6 weeks of age. Be aware that maternal antibodies can interfer greatly with vaccination at this time and check with the breeder or vet that all is fine. All pups need boosters at 12 weeks and 16 weeks of age. You must keep your pet well away from areas where other dogs until 14 days after its last vaccination. From then on, annual vaccinations are recommended to maintain your dog’s protection against these deadly viruses.
Kennel cough is a highly infectious disease related to the influenza virus that causes a persistent, hacking cough. The two bugs that cause this cough are parainfluenza virus & Bordetella bronchiseptica. Vaccines for kennel cough are available and while they are effective don’t expect 100% protection – like a flu vaccine for humans. Nevertheless, vaccinated animals that do contact the disease overcome it quickly if their immune system is otherwise healthy.
Leptospirosis is a bacterium that can be carried by rodents. If a rat or mouse is infected with leptospirosis urinates in a dogs drinking water or is caught and eaten by a dog, the dog will be infected. The bacteria colonise in the kidneys, resulting in jaundice and death due to renal failure. The whole problem can be avoided by annual vaccination for these bacteria.