Everything you need to know about your dog's first vaccine

by Liz Barcelos

In this comprehensive guide, we will cover all the essential aspects related to your dog's first vaccine. If you're adopting a new furry family member or want to improve your knowledge about dog vaccinations, you're in the right place. Here, we'll explore in detail why the first vaccine is critical, when it should be administered, what diseases it protects against, and more. Get ready to become an informed and responsible guardian to ensure the health of your four-legged friend.

Why Do We Need to Give the Dog its First Vaccination?

Dog vaccines play a vital role in keeping your pet protected from potentially deadly diseases. However, its purpose is not to treat or prevent contact with viruses, but to activate your pet's immune system.

When a vaccine is administered, it stimulates the animal's body to produce defense cells. These cells remain in the body and, when the dog comes into contact with the virus or microorganism against which it was vaccinated, these cells immediately recognize the invader and act to prevent it from taking hold and causing disease. Therefore, vaccines are a crucial preventative measure for your dog's health.

When Should the Dog's First Vaccine Be Administered?

The ideal time to administer your dog's first vaccine is right after you adopt him. A veterinarian must evaluate the puppy and determine the vaccination schedule. In general, the first dose is applied around 45 days of age, but some dogs may need it as early as 30 days, especially those in kennels, due to the greater risk of exposure to viral diseases.

After the first dose, booster doses are required every three weeks. These subsequent doses offer broader protection, known as polyvalent or multiple vaccines. In some cases, a fourth dose may be prescribed, especially when the puppy reaches 16 weeks of age. The specific protocol is determined after the first vaccine is administered, and the dates of the next doses are recorded on the animal's vaccination card.

What is the Dog's First Vaccine?

The dog's first vaccine is called polyvalent or multiple, known as V7, V8 or V10, depending on the number of diseases it protects against. It offers protection against several diseases, including:

  • Distemper
  • Adenovirus type 2
  • Coronavirus
  • Parainfluenza
  • Parvovirus
  • Leptospira icterohaemorrhagiae
  • Leptospira canicola

Starting at 12 weeks of age, most dogs should also receive the rabies vaccine. In some cases, your veterinarian may recommend vaccination against canine flu, leishmaniasis and giardiasis. All of these vaccines play a crucial role in ensuring your dog's health.

Do Vaccines Cause Pain in Dogs?

Dog vaccines are administered via subcutaneous injections, usually causing only mild discomfort and perhaps a momentary cry from the puppy, who doesn't fully understand what is happening. The application is quick and can be carried out at the veterinarian's clinic or even at home, if the care is provided at home.

Although most dogs do not show significant reactions after vaccination, some may be a little quieter on the day of injection due to pain at the site or even have a slight fever. More serious reactions are rare, but if you notice any changes in your pet's behavior, it is important to contact your veterinarian immediately.

How Much Does a Dog's First Vaccine Cost?

The cost of your dog's first vaccine may vary depending on the region in which you live and the laboratory that manufactures the vaccine. However, it is important to highlight that the price of the vaccine is affordable, especially when compared to the cost of treating the diseases it prevents.

Don't skimp on your furry friend's health, as diseases such as distemper can be fatal. Therefore, remember that your dog's first vaccine, as well as subsequent ones, are essential investments to ensure the health and longevity of your beloved companion.

Other Dog Vaccines Besides the First?

When you take your puppy to be vaccinated, your veterinarian will determine what other vaccinations are necessary. In addition to the multiple vaccine, the canine flu vaccine is usually administered. The rabies vaccine is administered between three and four months of age and must be repeated annually.

Additionally, depending on the environment and risk, your veterinarian may recommend vaccination against leishmaniasis, canine flu and giardiasis in your dog's vaccination schedule. It is essential to follow the professional's instructions to ensure the health of your furry friend.

Adult Dog Also Needs Vaccination

If you have adopted an adult dog, be aware that it also needs to be vaccinated. The first vaccine for adult dogs is the same as that for puppies, the polyvalent/multiple vaccine. Additionally, your pet must receive the rabies vaccine.

However, before application, your veterinarian will carry out an assessment of the animal's health. He may also prescribe dewormers, as it is important to ensure your dog is free of internal parasites.

Remember that vaccination is an act of love and care for your dog, regardless of age. Through it, you are contributing to the health and quality of life of your four-legged friend.

Pay attention to your dog's health!

In this guide, we cover all the fundamental aspects related to your dog's first vaccine. Now you're ready to take steps to protect your furry friend's health. Remember that vaccination is one of the essential pillars to ensure that your dog lives a long and healthy life.

Maintain a close relationship with your veterinarian, follow the recommended vaccination schedule and take good care of your four-legged friend. This way, you will be providing him with the best care possible. Your dog deserves all the attention and affection you can offer. His health will thank you!

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