Plan your pet’s health checks

Veterinary nurse Suzhy Winfield with one of her patients. ENGANL00120130512120533
Veterinary nurse Suzhy Winfield with one of her patients. ENGANL00120130512120533

IT’S A VET’S LIFE: With VetSavers of Spalding

Some of you may have got a new puppy for Christmas and now is the perfect time to sort out its health plan.

Here are a few tips to help you:

Should I get my dog 
vaccinated?

Yes. Dog vaccination protects your dog against various diseases which can cause pain, distress and are often fatal.

By vaccinating your dog you have peace of mind, knowing that you have provided protection. As well as safeguarding your own pet, it also prevents diseases from being passed onto other animals.

What are vaccines?

Vaccines contain a harmless form of the virus or bacterium that causes a particular disease. They work by stimulating the body’s immune system in a safe way. If the dog then comes in to contact with the disease for real, the immune system “remembers” what it did to deal with the vaccine, so can fight the disease. This protects the dog.

When should I get my puppy or dog vaccinated?

Pets should receive a ‘primary’ vaccination course early in life, followed by ‘booster’ vaccinations throughout their life.

The primary vaccination course for dogs varies with the type of vaccine used. The first vaccine can sometimes be given as young as six weeks of age, with the second usually given two to four weeks later.

Booster vaccinations are needed because the body’s immune response gradually fades over time. They are often given every year, depending on the vaccine.

Ask your vet when it is best to vaccinate your puppy or dog.

When can my puppy start to meet other animals?

Puppies should be vaccinated before they mix with other animals. It is essential for their normal development that they are allowed to socialise with other animals while they are very young, so you should get them vaccinated as soon as possible. Ask your vet when they can start meeting other animals and begin to socialise them as soon as it’s safe to do so.

Which diseases do vaccines protect against?

* Canine distemper (‘hard pad’)

* Canine parvovirus

* Infectious canine hepatitis

* Kennel cough

* Leptospirosis

If you are planning to take your dog abroad you will need to arrange additional vaccinations and health checks. Why not download your own copy of our vaccinations leaflet?