Dogs are our companions, protectors, and loyal friends. We want them to be happy, playful, energetic, and full of life. We feed, walk and care for them to make sure they have everything they need to develop properly. As caring pet owners, taking care of our pet’s health is one of our main responsibilities. Therefore, vaccines play an essential role in preventing unnecessary and risky diseases.

Dog vaccines play an important role in protecting your dog from various harmful and even deadly diseases. If you owned a dog, it’s important to keep vaccinations up to date to ensure the safety of your pet (as well as your family), as some animal diseases can be transmitted to humans. What is pet vaccination all about? What are the risks? What are the benefits?

The need to be vaccinated against certain diseases depends on several factors, such as your pet’s age, medical history, lifestyle, and habits. While some pets must be vaccinated every year, others should only be vaccinated against certain diseases every three years.

List of Dog Vaccination

cropped image of veterinarian doing injection by syringe to dog in clinic


Rabies is a viral disease in mammals that invades the central nervous system and causes headaches, anxiety, hallucinations, excessive drooling, fear of water, paralysis, and death. Treatment within hours of infection is essential; otherwise, you are very likely to die. Most states require regular rabies vaccinations. Check with your veterinarian about the laws and requirements for rabies vaccination in your area. Of course, your veterinarian should give your opinion and can always give you more information and guidance on mandatory and optional vaccines.

Canine Distemper

A serious and contagious disease caused by a virus that attacks the gastrointestinal (GI), respiratory, and nervous systems of stray dogs, raccoons, skunks, and other animals. It spreads through exposure to air (by sneezing or coughing) from an infected animal. The virus can also be transmitted through shared food and water dishes and equipment.

It causes discharge from the eyes and nose, fever, cough, vomiting, diarrhea, convulsions, spasms, paralysis, and often death. This disease used to be called a “hard pad” because the footpad thickens and hardens. There is no cure for distemper. Treatment includes supportive measures and measures to prevent secondary infections, control symptoms of vomiting, seizures, and more. If the animal survives the symptoms, there is hope that the dog’s immune system will have the opportunity to fight it. Infected dogs can eliminate the virus for months.

Lyme Disease

Unlike the famous “bull’s-eye” rash that people exposed to Lyme disease often discover, dogs don’t experience such a tell-tale symptom Lyme disease (or Lyme disease) is a tick-borne infectious ailment caused by a kind of bacteria known as spirochetes. The disease can affect the heart, kidneys, and joints, among others, or cause neurological disorders if left untreated. If diagnosed quickly, antibiotic treatment is extremely useful, and vaccination can help to fight against the disease.


A respiratory disease that is usually transmitted through contact with other dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend this vaccine based on your dog’s lifestyle and history. Booster injections and revaccinations may be required.


Parvo is a critical and contagious virus that affects all dogs. However, unvaccinated dogs and puppies under four months of age are at the greatest risk of contracting it. The virus attacks the gastrointestinal system, causing loss of appetite, vomiting, fever, and often severe bloody diarrhea. Extreme dehydration can occur quickly and can kill a dog in 48 to 72 hours. Therefore, immediate veterinary treatment is crucial. There is no prevention or cure. If you keep the dog hydrated and control its secondary symptoms, the total effect can continue until its immune system overcomes the disease.

Canine Hepatitis

Infectious hepatitis in dogs is a highly contagious viral infection that affects the liver, kidneys, spleen, lungs, and eyes of the affected dog. This liver disease is caused by a virus that is not related to the human form of hepatitis. Symptoms range from low fever and congestion of the mucous membranes to vomiting, jaundice, enlarged stomach, and pain around the liver. Many dogs can get well the mild form of the disease, but those who suffer from the severe may kill. This is not curable, but doctors can treat symptoms.


The canine coronavirus is not the same virus that causes Covid-19 in humans. COVID-19 is not considered a threat to the health of dogs and there is no evidence that dogs get sick. Signs include most gastrointestinal symptoms, such as loss of appetite, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Doctors can keep a dog hydrated, warm and comfortable, and relieve nausea, but no medicine kills the coronavirus. The risk of coronavirus infection is not as high as that of other viral diseases. Therefore, the AAHA guidelines for dogs advise against coronavirus vaccination so Your veterinarian can help you decide if your dog should receive this vaccine.

Are There Optional Dog Vaccines?

While puppy vaccines and vaccinations for dogs are very important to the overall health and well-being of your canine companion, not every puppy or dog should be vaccinated against all diseases. Some doses for dogs should only be done based on the following factors:

  • Age
  • Medical history
  • Environment
  • Travel habits
  • Lifestyle

So, It is very essential to know the appropriate vaccination protocol for your furry friend during your appointment.

When To Start Puppy Vaccinations

In general, a puppy should start getting vaccinated as soon as they receive the puppy (this is usually between 6 and 8 weeks) and then every three weeks until about four months of age until the last round arrives. If the puppy’s mother has a healthy immune system, she will most likely receive antibodies in breast milk while breastfeeding. After weaning a puppy from breast milk, vaccinations should begin.

Some Risk and Side Effects

The benefits of vaccination far outweigh any risks. Side effects from vaccines for dogs are rare. However, as with all medications or vaccination records, puppy vaccines can cause some side effects. We recommend that you vaccinate your puppy or dog at a time when you can monitor it after vaccination.

If you see some reactions of yore dog to the vaccination the symptoms may include: slowness, fever, swelling of the face or legs, and/or hives, loss of appetite, diarrhea, swelling or pain at the injection site, difficulty breathing, collapse and seizures (anaphylactic shock). Like us, mild symptoms of vaccines can be ignored.

Most reactions are mild and short-lived. If you suspect a more serious reaction to puppy vaccines or dog vaccines, such as facial swelling, vomiting, or lethargy, you should contact your veterinarian immediately.

Scheduling An Appointment

During your first visit to the vet, a vaccination schedule for puppies should be established, which must be done within one week of receiving your new puppy. The programs can be planned for adult dogs that include regular booster shots after the puppy’s vaccination schedule is completed or immediately after a young or adult dog is admitted to your family.

As with any other vaccination protocol, a non-deviating vaccination schedule for dogs should be followed to ensure that their companion remains healthy, happy, and healthy throughout their lives.


Further Reading:

Catherine J.M. Diodati, Vaccine Guide for Dogs and Cats: What Every Pet Lover Should Know Paperback – Illustrated, 1 May 2003

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