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Puppy Vaccinations at Home

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Puppy Vaccinations at Home

If you’re a new puppy owner, one of the most important things you can do to keep your furry friend healthy is to ensure they receive all the necessary vaccinations. Vaccinations protect your puppy from a variety of diseases and illnesses, some of which can be fatal. While many pet owners choose to take their puppies to a veterinary clinic or animal hospital to receive their vaccinations, it is possible to vaccinate your puppy at home.

By vaccinating your puppy at home, you can save time and money while still providing your pet with the protection they need. DIY vaccination kits are available for purchase online and at some pet stores, and they typically include all the necessary components and instructions for administering the vaccines. However, it’s important to note that vaccinating your puppy at home does come with some risks and possible complications, so it’s important to educate yourself thoroughly before attempting to do so.

Key Takeaways for Puppy Vaccinations at Home

  • Vaccinating your puppy is crucial for their health and wellbeing.
  • Vaccinating your puppy at home can save time and money.
  • DIY vaccination kits are available, but it’s important to educate yourself before attempting to vaccinate your puppy at home.

About Puppy Vaccinations

Puppy vaccinations are injections that contain small amounts of modified or dead viruses or bacteria. These injections are designed to stimulate your puppy’s immune system, allowing them to build immunity against specific diseases. Vaccines are categorized as either core or non-core vaccines.

Core Vaccines

Core vaccines are essential for all puppies and are designed to protect against diseases that are widespread and potentially fatal. The core vaccines include:

  • Canine Distemper
  • Canine Parvovirus
  • Canine Adenovirus
  • Rabies

Non-Core Vaccines

Non-core vaccines are optional and are given based on your puppy’s lifestyle and risk of exposure. These vaccines protect against diseases that are less common or less severe. Some examples of non-core vaccines include:

  • Bordetella
  • Leptospirosis
  • Lyme Disease
  • Canine Influenza

Core Vaccines for Puppies

As a responsible pet owner, it is important to ensure that your puppy receives all the necessary vaccinations to protect them from harmful diseases. Core vaccines are the foundation of any puppy vaccination schedule, and they are recommended for all puppies regardless of their lifestyle or environment.

Rabies Vaccine

The rabies vaccine is a crucial core vaccine that protects your puppy against the deadly rabies virus. Rabies is a viral disease that can be transmitted through the bite of an infected animal, and it is fatal if left untreated. In most states, it is required by law to vaccinate your puppy against rabies. The first rabies vaccine is typically given to puppies between 12 and 16 weeks of age, and then repeated annually or every three years depending on the vaccine used and local regulations.

DHP Vaccine

The DHP vaccine, also known as the DHPP or DAPP vaccine, is a combination vaccine that protects against three highly contagious and potentially deadly diseases: distemper, hepatitis, and parvovirus. Distemper is a viral disease that affects the respiratory, gastrointestinal, and nervous systems, while hepatitis is a viral disease that affects the liver. Parvovirus is a highly contagious virus that attacks the intestinal tract and can cause severe vomiting and diarrhea. The first DHP vaccine is typically given to puppies between 6 and 8 weeks of age, with boosters given every 3-4 weeks until they are 16 weeks old. After that, boosters are typically given every 1-3 years depending on the vaccine used and your veterinarian’s recommendations.

Parvovirus Vaccine

The parvovirus vaccine is a crucial core vaccine that protects your puppy against the highly contagious and potentially deadly parvovirus. Parvovirus is a viral disease that attacks the intestinal tract and can cause severe vomiting and diarrhea, leading to dehydration and even death. The first parvovirus vaccine is typically given to puppies between 6 and 8 weeks of age, with boosters given every 3-4 weeks until they are 16 weeks old. After that, boosters are typically given every 1-3 years depending on the vaccine used and your veterinarian’s recommendations.

Canine Distemper Vaccine

The canine distemper vaccine is a core vaccine that protects your puppy against the highly contagious and potentially deadly distemper virus. Distemper is a viral disease that affects the respiratory, gastrointestinal, and nervous systems, and it can be fatal in up to 50% of cases. The first distemper vaccine is typically given to puppies between 6 and 8 weeks of age, with boosters given every 3-4 weeks until they are 16 weeks old. After that, boosters are typically given every 1-3 years depending on the vaccine used and your veterinarian’s recommendations.

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Canine Hepatitis Vaccine

The canine hepatitis vaccine is a core vaccine that protects your puppy against the highly contagious and potentially deadly canine adenovirus-1 (CAV-1) that causes infectious canine hepatitis. Hepatitis is a viral disease that affects the liver, and it can cause fever, vomiting, and abdominal pain. The first hepatitis vaccine is typically given to puppies between 6 and 8 weeks of age, with boosters given every 3-4 weeks until they are 16 weeks old. After that, boosters are typically given every 1-3 years depending on the vaccine used and your veterinarian’s recommendations.

Canine Parainfluenza Vaccine

The canine parainfluenza vaccine is a core vaccine that protects your puppy against the highly contagious and potentially deadly canine parainfluenza virus. Parainfluenza is a viral disease that affects the respiratory system and can cause coughing, sneezing, and fever. The first parainfluenza vaccine is typically given to puppies between 6 and 8 weeks of age, with boosters given every 3-4 weeks until they are 16 weeks old. After that, boosters are typically given every 1-3 years depending on the vaccine used and your veterinarian’s recommendations.

Remember, core vaccines are important to protect your puppy’s health and well-being. Talk to your veterinarian about the best vaccination schedule for your puppy and keep track of when boosters are due to ensure they stay protected.

Non-Core Vaccines for Puppies

When it comes to puppy vaccinations, there are two types of vaccines: core vaccines and non-core vaccines. Core vaccines are recommended for all puppies, while non-core vaccines are optional and depend on your puppy’s lifestyle and risk of exposure. In this section, we’ll discuss the most common non-core vaccines for puppies.

Bordetella Vaccine

The Bordetella vaccine, also known as the kennel cough vaccine, is recommended for puppies who are frequently around other dogs, such as those who attend doggy daycare or visit dog parks. Bordetella is a highly contagious respiratory disease that can be easily spread from dog to dog. The vaccine is typically given in the form of a nasal spray or injection and requires yearly boosters.

Lyme Disease Vaccine

The Lyme disease vaccine is recommended for puppies who live in areas with a high prevalence of Lyme disease. Lyme disease is a tick-borne illness that can cause fever, joint pain, and lethargy in dogs. The vaccine is typically given in two doses, 2-4 weeks apart, and requires yearly boosters.

Leptospirosis Vaccine

The Leptospirosis vaccine is recommended for puppies who live in areas with a high prevalence of Leptospirosis. Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection that can cause liver and kidney damage in dogs. The vaccine is typically given in two doses, 2-4 weeks apart, and requires yearly boosters.

Canine Influenza Vaccine

The Canine Influenza vaccine is recommended for puppies who are frequently around other dogs, such as those who attend doggy daycare or visit dog parks. Canine Influenza is a highly contagious respiratory disease that can be easily spread from dog to dog. The vaccine is typically given in two doses, 2-4 weeks apart, and requires yearly boosters.

Coronavirus Vaccine

The Coronavirus vaccine is recommended for puppies who are frequently around other dogs, such as those who attend doggy daycare or visit dog parks. Coronavirus is a highly contagious disease that can cause diarrhea and vomiting in dogs. The vaccine is typically given in two doses, 2-4 weeks apart, and requires yearly boosters.

Remember, while non-core vaccines are optional, they can provide additional protection for your puppy. Talk to your veterinarian about which non-core vaccines are right for your puppy based on their lifestyle and risk of exposure.

Information on Vaccinating Puppies at Home in Virginia

Some states, such as Virginia, allow dog owners to give their puppy shots at home. However, the Virginia Department of Health does not recognize an animal vaccinated unless it is administered by a licensed veterinarian or licensed veterinary technician.

The rabies vaccine is the most important core vaccine because dogs with the disease can infect other dogs and humans. Rabies vaccinations are required by law from 4 months of age.

puppy vaccination at home

Reasons to Give Puppy Vaccinations at Home

Even though some states require a licensed veterinarian or veterinarian tech to administer dog vaccinations, there are many benefits to doing them at home.

Decrease Anxiety

Many puppies become very nervous in new environments. Taking a puppy to the vet can create more stress than it’s worth, especially since a puppy has to go to the vet often to receive all of its core vaccines.

Stress can lead to behavioral problems or chronic anxiety. Keeping your new puppy home means him/her receiving the core vaccines needed without the added stress of an unfamiliar place and people.

Boost Immune System

The goal of canine vaccinations is to boost the immune system. By giving the body a small amount of the disease or virus, a dog’s immune system can fight against the familiar germs if they come in contact with them again.

A dog’s immune system becomes weaker when receiving a vaccine because it has to fight it. When a puppy is under stress, the immune system also lowers in effectiveness to handle the “threat”.

Compounding the dog vaccinations with stress, there’s a higher chance your puppy may become sick. Puppy vaccinations at home decrease the chances of getting sick because it’s not as stressful.

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Spread Out Vaccination Schedule

One of the reasons some puppies and adult dogs become ill after receiving shots is because they receive too many at once. Multiple vaccinations or combination vaccines can wear down the immune system too much leading to feeling sick or suffering from the illness the vaccine is supposed to fight.

By giving puppy vaccinations at home, a dog owner can spread the vaccines over more time to give the immune system a chance to recover between each dose.

Decide on Non-Core Vaccines in Private

Many pet parents feel guilty or ashamed when they turn down non-core vaccinations at the vet’s office. By giving puppy vaccinations at home, owners can choose to give their puppy and adult dogs non-vaccines privately.

It also means that dog owners can do the research at home without feeling as though they have to make a decision at the veterinarian’s office. Read more about different non-core vaccines, such as ones for Lyme disease, the flu, and kennel cough below:

Pros and Cons of the Kennel Cough Vaccine

Pros and Cons of Dog Flu Vaccine

Lyme Vaccine for Dogs: Pros and Cons

Convenience

Vaccinating your puppy at home is a convenient option for busy pet owners who may not have the time to take their puppy to the vet. By vaccinating your puppy at home, you can save time and avoid the hassle of scheduling an appointment and traveling to the vet’s office.

Cost-Effective

Vaccinating your puppy at home can be a cost-effective option compared to taking your puppy to the vet. You can purchase vaccines online and administer them yourself, saving money on vet bills. However, it’s important to note that you should only vaccinate your puppy if you have the necessary knowledge and skills to do so safely.

Puppy Vaccination Schedule

Keeping your puppy up-to-date with their vaccinations is an important part of ensuring their health and wellbeing. Vaccinations help protect your puppy from a range of diseases and illnesses, some of which can be fatal. In this section, we’ll go over the typical puppy vaccination schedule and what to expect during your puppy’s first year of life.

First-Year Puppy Shot Schedule

The first year of your puppy’s life is critical for their development and overall health. During this time, they will require a series of vaccinations to protect them from common illnesses and diseases. Here is a typical puppy vaccination schedule for the first year:

  • 6-8 weeks: Your puppy should receive their first round of vaccinations, which typically includes the DHPP vaccine (distemper, hepatitis, parainfluenza, and parvovirus).
  • 10-12 weeks: Your puppy should receive their second round of vaccinations, which typically includes the DHPP vaccine and the coronavirus vaccine.
  • 14-16 weeks: Your puppy should receive their third round of vaccinations, which typically includes the DHPP vaccine, the coronavirus vaccine, and the rabies vaccine.
  • 12-16 months: Your puppy should receive their final round of vaccinations, which typically includes the DHPP vaccine and the rabies vaccine.

Note that this is a general guideline, and your veterinarian may recommend a different schedule based on your puppy’s individual needs.

Booster Shots

After your puppy’s initial vaccinations, they will require booster shots to maintain immunity. Booster shots are typically given every 1-3 years, depending on the type of vaccine. Your veterinarian will be able to advise you on the appropriate booster schedule for your puppy.

Possible Risks and Complications

While puppy vaccinations are important for protecting your furry friend from potentially deadly diseases, there are some risks and complications to keep in mind. Here are some of the possible issues that could arise:

Over-vaccination

Over-vaccination is a concern for some pet owners. This occurs when a dog receives more vaccines than necessary or receives them too frequently. While vaccines are important, too many can put a strain on your pup’s immune system and may even increase their risk of developing certain health problems.

To avoid over-vaccination, it’s important to work with your veterinarian to develop a vaccination schedule that is tailored to your dog’s individual needs. This may include avoiding unnecessary vaccines or spacing them out over a longer period of time.

Possible vaccine reactions

Like any medical treatment, vaccines can have side effects. While most puppies will not experience any issues after receiving their vaccinations, some may have mild to moderate reactions. These can include:

  • Pain or swelling at the injection site
  • Lethargy or decreased appetite
  • Mild fever

More serious reactions, such as an allergic reaction, are rare but can occur. Signs of a severe reaction include difficulty breathing, vomiting, diarrhea, and collapse. If you notice any of these symptoms after your puppy receives a vaccine, seek veterinary care immediately.

Disease risks

While vaccines can protect your puppy from many diseases, they are not foolproof. Some dogs may still contract illnesses even after being vaccinated. Additionally, vaccines may not be effective for all strains of a virus or bacteria.

It’s important to continue to monitor your puppy’s health and seek veterinary care if you notice any symptoms of illness. This can help catch and treat any potential health problems early on.

Immune system concerns

While vaccines are designed to help boost your puppy’s immune system, some pet owners worry that they may actually harm it. While there is no evidence to suggest that vaccines can weaken a dog’s immune system, it is possible for them to have a temporary impact.

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After receiving a vaccine, your puppy’s immune system may be temporarily weakened as it works to build immunity. This is why it’s important to avoid exposing your puppy to other dogs or potentially contaminated areas for a few days after receiving a vaccine.

Overall, while there are some risks and complications associated with puppy vaccinations, the benefits generally outweigh the risks. By working with your veterinarian to develop a tailored vaccination schedule and monitoring your puppy’s health closely, you can help ensure that your furry friend stays happy and healthy for years to come.

Cost of Puppy Vaccinations

Vaccinating your puppy is an essential part of responsible pet ownership. Vaccinations protect your puppy from various diseases and illnesses, ensuring they lead a healthy and happy life. However, the cost of puppy vaccinations can vary depending on several factors, including your location, the type of vaccine, and the veterinarian you choose.

The average cost of puppy vaccinations can range from $75 to $100 for the first year. This includes the initial set of shots, which typically cover distemper, parvovirus, and adenovirus. After the initial set, booster shots are required annually, which can cost anywhere from $50 to $100. This cost can add up over time, so it’s essential to budget for your puppy’s vaccinations.

One way to save on the cost of puppy vaccinations is to vaccinate your puppy at home. Many pet stores and online retailers offer at-home vaccination kits that allow you to administer the vaccines yourself. These kits are typically less expensive than visiting a veterinarian and can save you money in the long run.

However, it’s important to note that administering vaccines at home can be risky if you’re not properly trained. You should always consult with a veterinarian before vaccinating your puppy at home to ensure you’re using the correct vaccines and administering them correctly.

In addition to the cost of the vaccines themselves, you should also budget for other pet-related expenses, such as heartworm prevention and flea and tick prevention. These preventative measures can help keep your puppy healthy and happy, but they do come at an additional cost.

In summary, the cost of puppy vaccinations can vary depending on several factors. It’s important to budget for these expenses and consider vaccinating your puppy at home if it’s a cost-effective option. Always consult with a veterinarian before administering vaccines at home to ensure you’re doing so safely and correctly.

Where to Buy Puppy Vaccinations Online

One of the best places to buy puppy vaccinations online is through Tractor Supply Co. They are well-known and trustworthy. They have the following single and combination vaccines for puppies and dogs.

Canine Spectra 5

canine spectra 5 dog vaccine

The Durvet Canine Spectra 5 is good for puppies 6 weeks old. It has 5-way protection including canine distemper, canine parainfluenza – parvovirus.

Canine Spectra 10

canine spectra 10

The Durvet Canine Spectra 10 has 10-way protection. This vaccine offers healthy puppies 6 weeks of age or older prevention from canine distemper, infectious diseases such as hepatitis, adenovirus type-2, canine coronavirus, canine parainfluenza, parvovirus, leptospira canicola, leptospira grippotyphosa, leptospira icterohaemorrhagiae, and leptospira pomon.

Canine Spectra 6

canine spectra 6

The Durvet Canine Spectra 6 Vaccination provides 6-way protection for dogs 6 weeks and older. This one-dose puppy shot helps prevent Canine Distemper, Canine Adenovirus Type 2 (CAV-2), Canine Coronavirus, Canine Parainfluenza, and Canine Parvovirus Type 2b.

Canine Spectra 9

canine spectra 9

The Durvet Canine Spectra 9 vaccination provides 9-way protection with one dose for puppies 6 weeks and older. This puppy vaccination helps prevent Canine Distemper, infectious Canine Hepatitis, Canine Adenovirus Type 2 (CAV-2), Canine Parainfluenza, Canine Parvovirus Type 2b, Leptospira Canicola, Leptospira grippotyphosa, Leptospira Icterohaemorrhagiae, and Leptospira Pomona.

Canine Spectra 10 Plus Lyme

canine spectra 10 plus lyme

The Spectra Canine 10 offers 10-way protection PLUS Lyme disease prevention. Only puppies 9 weeks and older should receive this vaccination. For additional information on all of the canine diseases, this vaccination helps prevent, click the button below to visit the Tractor Supply Co. website.

Canine KC Dog Vaccine

canine kc dog vaccine

Puppy owners interested in giving their pup the kennel cough vaccine may want to consider the Canine Spectra KC3. It can be given to puppies 8 weeks and older. Annual boosters are required.

How to Vaccinate Puppies at Home

Additional Resources

If you’re considering vaccinating your puppy at home, it’s important to do your research and make sure you have all the necessary information. Here are a few additional resources that can help you get started:

  • American Kennel Club Puppy Vaccination Schedule: The AKC offers a downloadable and printable vaccination schedule for puppies, which can be a helpful tool for keeping track of which vaccinations your puppy needs and when. You can find the schedule here.
  • AVMA Guidelines for Vaccination of Dogs and Cats: The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) offers guidelines for vaccination of dogs and cats, which can be a useful resource for understanding the recommended vaccination schedule and which vaccines are necessary for your puppy. You can find the guidelines here.
  • CDC Vaccination Guidelines for Dogs: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers vaccination guidelines for dogs, which can be a helpful resource for understanding the importance of vaccination and which vaccines are necessary for your puppy. You can find the guidelines here.
  • Consult with Your Veterinarian: It’s important to consult with your veterinarian before vaccinating your puppy at home. Your veterinarian can help you understand which vaccines are necessary for your puppy based on their age, breed, and lifestyle, and can also provide guidance on how to administer the vaccines safely and effectively.

Remember, vaccinating your puppy is an important part of keeping them healthy and protected from potentially life-threatening diseases. By doing your research and consulting with your veterinarian, you can ensure that your puppy receives the necessary vaccinations in a safe and effective manner.

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