One of the easiest and most helpful precautions you can take for your dog’s health is to ensure they are to date with the latest vaccinations. There are many illnesses dogs can develop that can affect various canine body systems and processes. Some are even zoonotic, meaning they can affect human health as well. At Gulf Gate Animal Hospital, we offer several canine vaccines that, in conjunction with routine heartworm testing and prevention, are sure to allow your dog to enjoy a long, healthy and vibrant life. Read more about each of our recommend core vaccinations below.
The DAPP vaccine provides protection against canine Distemper, Adenovirus, Para-influenza and Parvo. This immunization should be given to puppies starting at six weeks old. To eliminate the possibility of maternal antibody competition, we recommend continuing the DAPP vaccination every two to four weeks until your pup has reached 16 weeks of age. We administer this vaccine one year after the last puppy shot is given and once every three years afterward.
It is by law that all domesticated dogs must be vaccinated against rabies when they receive their initial shots as puppies at 12 weeks of age. Rabies is a deadly virus that affects the brain and spinal cord of all mammals, including dogs and humans. Therefore, it is very important to protect your pet from this virus. An adult booster shot is given a year later and administered every three years afterward.
Bordetella, also known as kennel cough, is a very common and contagious illness that affects the canine respiratory system. The bordetella dog vaccine is administered intranasally during the first puppy visit. The intranasal vaccine is then given every six months.
Leptospirosis, also known as lepto, is a bacterial disease that can affect both humans and pets. It occurs all over the world and leads to liver and kidney damage, as well as death if left untreated. Humans and pets can get this bacterial infection by coming into contact with infected wild animals (e.g., opossums, skunks, raccoons and rodents), lepto-infested water or infected urine. Since this disease can harm animals and humans, we highly encourage dogs to receive this immunization. They receive the initial vaccine at 9 weeks old and then again two to four weeks later. The adult booster shot is given annually.
Heartworm disease is a serious condition that affects thousands of pets every year. Heartworms are parasitic worms transmitted by mosquitoes that live in the arteries, lungs and hearts of dogs, cats and other animals. Once an animal is infected, it is essential to seek treatment, as the parasite can become life threatening. For dogs, treatment is possible, but can be dangerous. Therefore, we focus on preventing an infestation from the start. At Gulf Gate, we recommend having your dog tested for heartworms every year and continuing monthly heartworm prevention all year. We have several products available and your veterinarian will work with you to determine the best product for your pets lifestyle.
Intestinal parasites can be contracted through several routes and some can pose a serious threat to our dogs and their owners. We recommend checking several stool samples in our puppies and then every 6 to 12 months in our adult dogs. Adult dogs often show no signs of intestinal parasites until they are severely infested.
Gulf Gate Animal Hospital Canine Vaccine Recommendations
We recommend all puppies start visiting Gulf Gate Animal Hospital once they turn six weeks old and continue to do so every two to four weeks until they are 16 weeks old. These visits enable us to ensure your new family member is protected from various diseases, parasites and growing into happy, healthy adults.
At Gulf Gate Animal Hospital, puppies receive vaccine boosters every two to four weeks until they reach 16 weeks of age, then annually. Once they reach maturity, they will be the vaccine schedule below:
- Bordetella vaccine – Every six months
- Leptospirosis vaccine – Annually
- DAPP – (“Canine Distemper”) – Every 3 years
- Rabies – Every 3 years
While these are the vaccines we recommend for all dogs, there are others that we may recommend in addition to these based on their lifestyle; these include the Lyme vaccine and Canine Influenza. These can be discussed further with your veterinarian.
If your dog is not up to date on his or her canine vaccinations and heartworm preventatives, please give us a call. We’ll be more than happy to answer any questions you may have about Gulf Gate Animal Hospital’s vaccination protocol and preventative care recommendations.