By Dr. Jess Trimble
A common question we get is “what shots does my dog need?”. While this varies based on local risks, there are some core vaccines that most adult dogs should receive. These vaccines are extremely effective in reducing the risks of disease and have very low instance of negative side effects- In a study of 1.2 millions dogs, only 0.3% had an adverse event to a vaccine.
Generally, the following vaccines are core for adult dogs.
Rabies - typically every 1-3 years
DAPP (DAPP stands for Distemper, Adenovirus, Parainfluenza, and Parvovirus)- typically every 1-3 years
Leptospirosis (aka lepto) - usually annually
Bordetella - usually one shot
Canine Flu (or CIV) - usually annually
Beyond these core vaccines, there are also vaccines for Lyme disease and rattlesnake venom. Which of the vaccines are right for your dog depends on your location and the pet’s lifestyle.
Despite the importance of vaccines, it is important to not over-vaccinate your dog so speak with your veterinarian about the correct vaccine cadence.
But what are the risks? When it comes to vaccines as they relate to preventive healthcare, the benefits far outweigh the risks. While vaccines are considered safe and prevent significant disease, you should nevertheless be aware of potential side effects and adverse reactions. Sometimes, a side effect is observed immediately following the injection, or it may not be noticed for days or even weeks later. Symptoms can range from the mild and more commonly-noticed muscle soreness to the severe and very rarely-occurring anaphylactic reaction.
Other minor vaccine reactions may include increased drowsiness, decreased energy, soreness at the injection site, decreased appetite, diarrhea, and a mild fever. These symptoms typically last no longer than one to two days, very similar to a human reaction to vaccination.
We’re here to help guide your pet’s health - have a health consult with our Veterinary Team for free or schedule an in-home checkup to get your dog vaccinated.