Chapter 4. Vaccinations and Regular Veterinary Checkups
Vaccinations and Regular Veterinary Checkups
Vaccinations prevent the spread of infectious disease among animals.
More importantly, they protect your pet from acquiring viral diseases
and bacterial infections from an unvaccinated or sick animal.
There are quite a number of different vaccines available in veterinary
medicine, but there are three "core" vaccines that all
dogs should have.
– Rabies is the most important vaccination all dogs should
have. Rabies is a fatal disease. In all states, rabies vaccinations
are required by law. The first rabies vaccination is good for one
year. In many states subsequent vaccinations are good for three
years. In other states, they are only valid for one year by law.
Please check with your vet to determine the legal requirements in
your state. Vaccinating your pet for rabies may literally save its
life for two reasons. Rabies is a threat in many areas and it is
a horrible disease. In addition, an unvaccinated pet that bites
a human being, even by accident, is subject to long quarantine periods
or even death for the purpose of testing for rabies infection. Don’t
risk your pet’s life. Get its rabies vaccination.
– DA2PPC (Also called DHPPC- sometimes DHLPPC) is the Distemper/Parvo
booster. It also provides protection against Parainfluenza, Coronavirus,
– Bordatella (also known as "Kennel cough") is
strongly recommended as one of the "core" vaccines because
dogs can easily be infected with it even if they are never in a
– Other vaccines are available such as Giardia, Lyme’s Disease,
Leptospirosis, and even Ringworm based on your dog’s need and exposure
rate to these diseases.
Regular veterinary check-ups are an important part of keeping your
pet healthy. Physical examinations can help veterinarians detect
and treat problems early before they become potentially life threatening.
Examinations include listening to the heart and lungs as well as
checking for obvious abnormalities in you pet’s: Eyes, Ears, Nose,
Mouth, Body, Coat, Skin, Legs, and Paws.
Discuss flea and tick control, worm detection, and dental care with
Ideally, dogs should be seen by their veterinarian at least once
a year or more frequently if they are elderly or have special medical
needs. Dogs are similar to humans and senior dogs may suffer from
various organ system problems, osteoarthritis, loss of vision or
hearing, and even memory loss or dementia. Fortunately, many of
these problems can be successfully controlled with medication or
by a simple lifestyle change.
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