The major infectious diseases of dogs are Canine Distemper, Infectious Canine Hepatitis, Parvovirus, Leptospirosis and Parainfluenza – DHLP/P. Leptosprosis can affect humans. Bordetella or Kennel Cough is another that can be prevented. Intranasal vaccine is sprayed into the dog’s nose. These are all preventable diseases as there are vaccines available. Your vet will tell you when your puppy is old enough to be vaccinated. There is an ongoing debate whether annual booster shots are necessary after the first 12 month booster. Having read the current information, the jury is still out. I thought about the booster shots but with my dogs being older and one with cancer, I think I’ll skip them this year. As a matter of fact, I’ve decided on either doing titers or vaccinating only every 3 years except for rabies. Rabies shots are mandatory yearly where I live, so I’d rather be safe than sorry. If your new dog is an older animal and you have no information on whether it has received vaccinations, check with your vet as to what to do.
Rabies is another preventable disease and can be transmitted to humans, either by being bitten by a rabid animal or its saliva gets into an open wound or eyes, nose or mouth. Check with your vet to determine at what age, usually 3 months old, your puppy should be vaccinated against this deadly disease. After the first shot, depending on what vaccine is used, shots can be good from 1-3 years. If you or your pet have been bitten by what you suspect may be a rabid animal, don’t hesitate, see your doctor immediately.