It's well known that puppy vaccinations are intended to protect a young pup from an assortment of viral infections which are known to cause serious illness in newborn dogs. This document intends to discuss in more detail some of the questions you might have, and give you information that you need to keep a new pet healthy.
Why vaccinate every three weeks?
What we're trying to do is cause the production of "antibodies" to protect the pet from within the bloodstream. The first vaccine is often attacked by the antibodies which were given to the pup by the mother dog, and so it does not measurably help the puppy. The second vaccine often challenges the puppies immune system longer, creating what is known as "memory" in the infection fighting white blood cells. It is not until the second or third injection that these "charged" white blood cells actually begin to churn out antibodies.
Why not vaccinate every four weeks? Or every two weeks?
Studies have shown that spreading the vaccinations out to every 4 weeks leaves "gaps" in the immune response during which the Parvovirus, among others, can successfully attack the puppy. Vaccinating too closely together can over-burden the immune system, leaving it too "busy" to fight off a real attack.
IS THE FIRST SHOT PROTECTIVE?
No, usually not. That's why we recommend that you socialize the puppy with other *people*, but not with other dogs until at least the second or third vaccine administration.
ARE THERE SOME DOGS THAT ARE POOR RESPONDERS TO VACCINES?
Yes. Dalmatians, Dobermans and Rottweillers are among the most susceptible to Parvovirus and some scientists feel that it may be the result of an inferior immune response to conventional vaccines. For this reason, your Veterinarian may suggest one extra immunization at 16 weeks.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS WE SEE IN SOME OF THE COMMON DISEASES?
Parvo appears as a severe diarrhea; but which is almost universally accompanied by vomiting. The pups appears weak and thin, and depression is a notable early sign. Transmission is by direct contact with infected surfaces, soil, or animal fluid discharges.
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Distemper may appear as a severe "cold" with a simultaneous loose stool. Vomiting may be seen, and in the final stages, seizure activity signals the end of the progression. Transmission is by direct contact with infected surfaces, soil, or animal fluid discharges.
Corona virus appears (in young animals) as a severe diarrhea with vomiting that can kill a young pup, but which is usually more of a horrible mess than an actual threat to life. On the surface, it looks just like Parvo but there is a test to separate the two. Transmission is by direct contact with infected surfaces, soil, or animal fluid discharges.
Rabies vaccine is required by law, and protects the animal from this ultimately fatal condition which causes furious behavior, then a sullen phase, and finally a swift death. Vaccination is very important because without it, an animal has no rights in the eyes of the law. Some are killed for Rabies testing, which is very upsetting to most owners.
We hope you will secure the vaccines suggested in a timely way. Please contact us for any additional information you may need.