Puppies are extremely vulnerable to disease – their immune system is essentially the antibodies their mother provided. It is vital to stimulate their immune system so when they are exposed to dangerous diseases, they are protected.

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What vaccinations do you provide to new puppies?

Vaccines tend to be classified as core and noncore vaccines. Core vaccines would be those vaccinations that all dogs should get due to the high risk of infection or severity of the infection. Standard core vaccines for puppies would be a combination of distemper virus, adenovirus type 2 and parvovirus vaccines. You may hear these vaccinations be referred to as DA2PP or ‘distemper combination’. Rabies vaccination is another core vaccine. Noncore vaccines are selected based on where your dog travels and what they do. Some common noncore vaccines are Leptospirosis, Lyme and Bordetella vaccines.

Why is it important to vaccinate your puppy?

Vaccinating your puppy is crucial in ensuring a healthy and happy life. Vaccines help to prevent diseases that can be harmful and even fatal to your dog and possibly you. Why would I risk my puppy getting sick and going to the hospital instead of snuggling at home?

At what age should I bring in my puppy for its vaccinations?

Vaccines begin at the age of 8 weeks of age. This age is because, before 8 weeks, the puppy still has antibodies in their system they receive from their mother to develop their immune system. If vaccinated too early, these antibodies will destroy the vaccine. If vaccinated too late, a mother’s antibodies may have dropped to a level that no longer protects the pup from a disease. Occasionally, in outbreak situations, puppies may be vaccinated at an earlier age.

How should I prepare my puppy for its first vaccination visit?

It is important to handle your puppy especially in areas they might not be accustomed to. For example, the ears, in between toes, lifting the lip and gently massaging the gum line etc. After doing this, be sure to make this a pleasant experience by giving lots of praise and treats. This will help prepare your puppy for the veterinarian handling him/her for their physical exam. Bringing previous vaccination and deworming records will also be useful for deciding what preventative care is needed for your new pet.

How much do puppy vaccinations cost?

The cost of your dog’s vaccination will be based on the custom vaccination program we review at each annual exam. An annual exam fee should also be considered as part of vaccine prices; an examination ensures your dog is healthy enough to mount an immune response and keep you aware of their overall health. (It is also a great opportunity to ask your veterinarian and pet healthcare team about things like behaviour, diet, parasites, etc.).

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