Picture this: You are out on a lovely walk with Fido when a feral looking animal crosses your path. Fido, being the loyal pooch that he has always been, comes to your aid and fends off the animal. However, he gets bitten and you now have to worry as to whether his rabies shot is up to date.
While this is a highly unlikely scenario, it is common to find dog owners in such predicaments simply because they overlooked their dog’s vaccination schedule. It pays to plan but you also need to plan appropriately.
This means that you’ll have to carefully consider your dog’s needs as well as their age and the vaccinations that are truly essential for their health. Learn all about this and more below.
1. Younger dogs need vaccines more than older dogs
Puppy vaccines are exceptionally important, and unvaccinated puppies contract life-threatening parvovirus at alarmingly high rates. Booster vaccines at one year of age are also important for most dogs. However, as dogs grow older they are less likely to contract diseases like parvo and distemper. I have never seen parvo in an eight-year-old dog. Hence I did not vaccinate Buster (age eight) against parvo.
2. Dogs with different lifestyles need different vaccines
Teacup Poodles in Manhattan generally do not need rattlesnake vaccines, for example. Duck hunting dogs may be at increased risk of leptospirosis as they wade through marshy areas, so the lepto vaccine might be more important for them.
3. Some vaccines are more important than others
Puppies benefit markedly from their DHPP (which includes parvo) shots. Other vaccines, such as the ones for rattlesnakes and Bordetella, are less important and are not appropriate for all dogs. Also, some vaccines are more effective than others. Parvo shots work, period. However, the efficacy of the vaccines for Bordetella and Lyme disease is questioned by many.
Clearly, your dog’s age matters a great deal with regards to their vaccination schedule. However, I’m sure that a few of you didn’t consider the fact that some vaccines are more important than others.
There’s so much to learn when it comes to vaccines and the importance that they play in your canine companion’s life and health.
For the full list of 9 things that you need to consider when planning your dog’s vaccinations, head on over to Dogster