Vaccinating Your Dog

At Mont Albert Vet we recommend that all adult dogs have an annual vet visit which includes a thorough general health check and vaccination. Puppies need a series of vaccinations and health checks between 6-8 weeks and 16 weeks.

What vaccinations does my puppy need?

Puppies need a series of vaccinations to protect them from common diseases during their first few months. Your puppy should be vaccinated at 6-8 weeks, again at 12 weeks and once more at 16 weeks.

The vaccines protect puppies against distemper, canine hepatitis, parvovirus and kennel cough.

Visits for these regular vaccinations also allow us to check your pup’s physical condition during the early stages of growth and give you any advice you need on puppy care.

Annual vaccinations will then be required as they move into adulthood.

What vaccinations does my dog need?

We recommend an annual all-in-one C5 vaccine for dogs. This covers distemper, hepatitis, parvovirus and two types of canine (kennel) cough (parainfluenza and bordetella). An annual heartworm prevention injection can be given at the same time.

A thorough general health check is included in your dog's annual visit for vaccination.

Following vaccination your dog may be off-colour for a day or two, or have some slight swelling or tenderness at the injection site. Access to food and water and a comfortable area to rest are usually all that is required for a quick recovery. However, if the response seems more severe, please call us on 9890 1728 for advice.

Triennial vaccine

A vaccine is now available for dogs that may be given every three years (triennial) rather than every year. However, this triennial vaccine only covers three of the five diseases included in the annual C5 vaccine (distemper, hepatitis and parvovirus). A separate two-in-one vaccine for canine (kennel) cough and the separate injection for heartworm prevention still need to be given every year.

Although we do not routinely recommend the triennial vaccine for dogs, we are happy to discuss this with you and to give your pet the vaccine of your choice.

Some boarding kennels, grooming parlours and training schools may not accept dogs which have been vaccinated with a triennial vaccine.

What diseases do the vaccines cover?

Parvovirus

Canine parvovirus is a disease that affects dogs of all ages but is most serious in young pups and older dogs. The virus attacks the intestines causing bloodstained diarrhoea, uncontrollable vomiting and severe abdominal pain. Dogs often die from severe dehydration despite intensive veterinary care.

It is not necessary to have direct contact with other dogs for the disease to be spread. The virus is so persistent that the infected dog’s environment needs to be cleaned with a potent disinfectant to prevent spread to other dogs. Outbreaks occur regularly throughout Australia, especially in summer.

Distemper

Canine distemper is a highly contagious viral disease that can affect dogs of any age with young puppies being at highest risk.

Symptoms vary but can include fever, coughing, sneezing, nasal discharge, vomiting, diarrhoea, loss of appetite and depression. Muscle tremors, fits and paralysis usually occur later in the disease. Treatment is usually ineffective and the recovery rate very low. Dogs that do recover may have permanent brain damage.

Hepatitis

Canine hepatitis is a viral disease which, like distemper, is extremely contagious and often fatal. Dogs of any age can become infected but severe cases are rare in dogs over two years of age.

Symptoms include high fever, depression, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhoea and acute abdominal pain. In severe cases death can occur within 24 to 36 hours. Dogs that recover may develop long term liver and kidney problems and can act as carriers, spreading the disease to other dogs for many months.

Canine cough (kennel cough)

Canine cough is a condition produced by several highly infectious diseases which can be easily spread wherever dogs congregate such as parks, shows, obedience schools and boarding kennels. Among the infectious agents associated with canine cough is the bacterium known as Bordetella bronchiseptica and the canine viruses parainfluenza, adenovirus type 2 and distemper.

Affected dogs have a dry hacking cough which can persist for several weeks. It is distressing for pet dogs and their owners and is a major problem for working and sporting dogs. Pneumonia can also be a consequence of infection.

Please give us a call on 9890 1728 to discuss a suitable vaccination regime for your puppy or dog.