* Puppies receive a series of vaccines at 8, 12 and 16 weeks of age. This schedule may vary depending on when the first booster vaccination is given. Ideally, three vaccines are given, 3-4 weeks apart.
* Yes, vaccinations need to be boostered in dogs who have never been vaccinated or who have had interruptions in their vaccination schedule. These boosters ensure that ideal memory has been triggered by the body and will then help to protect the puppy/dog, if challenged by the disease.
* Vaccines are grouped into Core and Non-Core vaccines
* Core Vaccines (recommended for all dogs):
* DHPP – This is a combination vaccine that will vaccinate your dog against Canine Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvovirus and Parainfluenza. As a puppy, we administer this vaccine 3 times, 3 to 4 weeks apart to build up their immune response to these deseases. At the doctors discretion, this vaccine typically is administered every 2 years.
* Rabies – This vaccine is required by law with the city. If contracted, rabies is a fatal disease. This vaccine is first given at 14 to 16 weeks of age and at the doctor’s discretion, this vaccine is typically administered every 3 years.
* Non-Core Vaccines (recommended to dogs based on their lifestyle)
* Leptospirosis – Leptospirosis is a bacteria transmitted in the urine and feces of rabbits, raccoons and other wildlife. The disease can cause kidney or liver failure as well as other problems with the body. This disease is also transmissible to people. This vaccine is typically administered yearly.
* Bordetella bronchiseptica – Bordetella is a bacteria that is a component in the disease “kennel cough”, an upper respiratory infection (cold) in dogs. This vaccine is like a “flu shot” and is recommended to dogs who are going to be placed in a kennel, in doggie daycare, or who frequently go to dog parks or other areas with a high population of dogs. This vaccine is typically administered once a year.
* Lyme: Lyme disease is transmitted by ticks. Some dogs may have signs such as joint pain, and arthritis like symptoms, fever, or lethargy. However, many dogs have no obvious signs until the disease has progressed. Lyme disease has been found and diagnosed in dogs in the Ottawa area. If you have found a tick on your pet and are concerned about lyme disease, contact the hospital and we would be happy to go over recommendations for your pet. This vaccine is typically administered once a year.
* Fecal Testing: Our doctors recommend bringing in a fresh stool sample once a year to test for intestinal parasites. Many puppies are born with parasites that were transmitted to them through their mother’s milk or placenta. As adults, many dogs may come into contact with intestinal parasite eggs in their environment. By testing a fecal sample annually, we can catch these nasty parasites before they cause problems!
* Blood Work/Urine Test: Our doctor may recommend annual blood work or urine testing for your pet. As your pet begins to age, early disease detection can be a key element to your pet’s health. Feel free to ask our doctors at your annual appointment if annual wellness testing would be beneficial for your pet!
* Heartworm and Prevention
* Heart worm is a disease that is contract through mosquitos and can be potentially fatal if contracted.
* We recommended our canine patients to be on a monthly heartworm prevention starting in either May or June depending on your dog’s needs. If you and your dog travel to the United States in the winter months, your dog may need to be on prevention year round.
* Every 2 years, as long as your dog has been on heartworm prevention, we recommend running a screen for heartworm. To do this, we require a small blood sample from your dog and perform a 4Dx snap test that screens for heartworm, as well as lyme disease, anaplasmosis, and ehrlichiosis. Testing is recommended to be absolutely certain the medication has been absorbed accurately and effectively.
* We offer a variety of heartworm prevention options, and would be happy to discuss them with you to decide the best product or product combination for your pet.
* Flea Prevention
* Fleas can often be a pest to deal with. To avoid a flea infestation, we recommend using flea prevention. Most of our heartworm preventions also protect your dog against fleas. We would be happy to discuss prevention options with you, just give us a call.
* Tick Prevention
* Ticks are definitely becoming more prevalent in our area. With the rise in ticks, we are also seeing a rise in Lyme disease.
* If you find a tick on your pet, it is best to remove it right away. It is important to ensure you remove the entire tick, including all mouth parts.
* If you have tick concerns, feel free to discuss prevention options with one of our doctors or technicians.