What Vaccines Does My New Puppy Need?
Core vs. Non-Core Vaccines
All new puppies require vaccines. There are two types of vaccines that we start our puppies with. The first will be what we call core vaccines. These are the vaccinations that your puppy will get throughout their lives. The second are non-core vaccines that we give based on your pets life style. Your veterinarian will have some questions that will allow them to decide whether or not these vaccines are necessary.
When coming in for your pet’s first visit, you will want to bring all of your pet’s’ previous vaccination history. This is how the veterinarian decides what vaccines will need to be given the day of your visit. Young pets need to be given a series of vaccines before they can be considered up to date and fully vaccinated. Some determining factors for whether or not a pet is fully vaccinated depends on the timing of when the vaccines are given, the age of the pet when the last vaccine is given, and the type of vaccine that is being given.
Most of the time puppies will have had at least one set of vaccines given before you purchase/adopt your pet. The most common vaccine that will have been given is the canine distemper vaccine also known as a DHPP vaccine. The name of this vaccine can be a little misleading since it isn’t just for canine distemper. The initials DHPP refer to several vaccines combined into one injection. This includes Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvo and Parainfluenza. This vaccine is a core vaccine that your pet will receive throughout his or her lifetime. All animal hospitals have their own protocols as to when vaccines will be started and finished and may slightly vary from one hospital to another. Once your pet has received their series of DHPP vaccines they will be up to date for one year. This vaccine will be given every 3 to 4 weeks up until your pet is 16 weeks of age.
Another core vaccine that your pet will receive is for rabies. This vaccine is given one time when your pet is 16 weeks of age. The vaccine will be good for one year. When your pet is vaccinated the following year it will be considered a three-year Rabies vaccine.
There are a few other vaccines that we offer and, depending on your and your pet’s lifestyle, the veterinarian will determine whether or not your pet should receive these vaccines. The first would be the Bordetella vaccine. This vaccine protects against kennel cough. Your veterinarian may recommend this vaccine to any pet that will be groomed, going to training classes, or if you board your pet during vacation.
The next vaccine is for Lyme disease. We recommend this vaccine often since New Jersey has a high rate of Lyme infections. Lyme disease is contracted through ticks. So if you live in an area where ticks are prevalent then this vaccine will be important for your pet to have. Along with monthly tick prevention you can decrease the risk of your puppy being exposed to Lyme.
Puppy vaccine schedules can be confusing to pet owners especially if you have never owned a pet before. Our goal is to answer any and all questions you have about what vaccines your puppy needs and when those vaccines should be given. Before your visit you may even want to write down the questions that you have so that nothing is missed.
Blog by Desiree, CVT