All dogs should be vaccinated to protect them from the potentially fatal diseases of canine distemper, parvovirus, hepatitis and leptospirosis.
Canine distemper virus causes a wide range of symptoms; initially vomiting, diarrhoea, coughing and a discharge from the nose and eyes. Damage to the dog’s nervous system can lead to dogs having fits and muscle twitches (chorea), and is ultimately fatal.
Canine parvovirus causes severe bloody diarrhea and vomiting, dehydration and collapse. Puppies are most at risk and the disease is often fatal.
Canine hepatitis is a disease caused by Adenovirus 1, which attacks the liver and can lead to liver failure.
Leptospirosis is caused by a bacteria which survives in stagnant water, and is commonly carried by rats. This means dogs with higher exposure to contaminated water, or rats and their urine, are at a greater risk. Symptoms include weakness, vomiting and diarrhoea, and jaundice. This can prove fatal through liver and kidney failure.
All these diseases are protected by a single vaccination.
Puppies should receive a course of two injections anytime from 8 weeks of age, the second injection being given 2 weeks after the first. It will be another week before your puppy can go outside.
It is also important for adult dogs to receive a yearly booster vaccination to maintain their immunity.
If your dog goes into kennels, it is also recommended to have a Kennel Cough vaccination, as this is a very contagious disease. It can be treated with antibiotics, but can take several weeks to clear. Kennel Cough vaccination must be given 2 to 3 weeks before your dog is going into kennels.