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Canine Vaccinations:


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Preventing and spreading common diseases in dogs is as easy as 1-2-3.  Simply understanding type and frequency of vaccination will be based on your dog's age, lifestyle (for example, indoor versus outdoor, frequency of contact with other dogs, etc.) and risk of exposure to infectious disease.  Below is our typical canine vaccination program that can be modified depending on our doctors recommendations and your preferences.

Typical Vaccination Program:

Distemper, Hepatitis,  Parainfluenza, Parvovirus, Lepto, and Rabies

(Additional vaccinations: Coronavirus, Bordetella, Lyme)

Common Infectious Diseases of the Dog:

Rabies - Rabies is a viral disease that can affect all warm-blooded mammals, including dogs, cats, wildlife and humans.  The virus infects cells of the nervous system, producing behavioral abnormalities such as unusual aggression or withdrawal.  Once the signs of rabies appear, the disease is always fatal.  Rabies is usually transmitted by bite wounds, often from infected wildlife, which represent the largest reservoir of the disease in the US.  Vaccines are very effective in preventing rabies.  Most states in the US require vaccination of dogs at one to three year intervals.  Many states require rabies vaccination of cats.

Distemper - Canine distemper is a widespread virus that causes high mortality in dogs.  Exposure is considered inevitable during a dog's lifetime, so canine distemper vaccination is almost always recommended.  Puppies and young dogs without immunity are a greatest risk.  Canine distemper virus infects various tissues in the dog's body, producing diarrhea, fever, nasal and ocular discharge, respiratory disease, appetite loss and neurologic signs such as muscular spasms and paralysis.  The disease is easilty transmitted and often fatal.

Hepatitis - Infectious canine hepatitis (ICH), caused by canine adenovirus type 1 (CAV-1), is a worldwide disease of dogs.  CAV-1 infects a wide range of tissues, including the liver (hence the name hepatitis), kidneys, spleen and lungs.  Infected dogs typically develop a fever and abnormal bleeding, and experience loss of white blood cells, which are a key component of the immune system.  Opacity of the eye ("blue eye") occurs in some cases.  Death, chronic hepatitis or severe illness may occur, and recover may be gradual in nonfatal cases.  CAV-1 is shed in urine and can survive outside the host for weeks or months.

Parvovirus - More commonly known as Parvo, is a highly contagious disease that causes diarrhea and vomiting, and often leads to death.  Although Parvo is most common in puppies, dogs of any age are susceptible.  The most common way to transmit Parvo from one dog to another is via contaminated feces.  Parvo can also be carried on the dog's hair and feet, as well as on contaminated cages, shoes, clothing and other objects.

Coronavirus - Next to Parvo, Coronavirus is the second leading cause of viral diarrhea.  While Coronavirus affects dogs of all ages, it affects puppies most severely.  Symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting, excessive thirst, weight loss and loss of appetite.  Dogs can have both Coronavirus and Parvovirus at the same time.  In fact, dual infections can lead to severe enteritis and death.

Leptospirosis - Commonly known as Lepto, is a bacterial infection resulting from the contact with the urine of infected wildlife, or contaminated water or food.  Leptospira bacteria infect the kidneys and liver, causing fever, anorexia, depression and generalized pain.  Several types of Leptospira bacteria can infect dogs.  Your veterinarian can advise you on which types to vaccinate against.  Leptospirosis can be transmitted to humans by contact through breaks in the skin or mucous membranes.

Lyme - Lyme disease is a devastating bacterial disease which can cause permanent and painful disabilities in dogs.  Symptoms include arthritis, sudden onset of severe pain and lameness, fever and lethargy, depression and loss of appetite.  Severe forms of Lyme disease can affect the heart, brain and kidneys.

Infectious Tracheobronchitis - Infectious Tracheobronchitis (more commonly known as Kennel Cough or ITB) is an acute, highly contagious disease.  Several organisms can cause ITB: Bordetella bronchiseptica, canine parainfluenza (CPI), canine adenovirus 1 (CAV-1), canine adenovirus 2 (CAV-2), canine distemper virus (CDV), reovirus and small organisms called mycoplasma.  Symptoms include severe coughing spells sometimes followed by vomiting and gagging.  The dog may also have watery eyes and/or a nasal discharge.  

Help prevent infectious diseases by maintaining high levels of general pet health, limiting your pet's exposure to possible sources of infectious agents and vaccinating your dog.  Call us today to schedule your dog's examination and vaccination appointment.  330-769-3838.


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