All dogs require yearly vaccination boosters to keep them healthy; puppies must have a series of initial shots to start them on a lifelong health care program.
DA2PV – This shot is also known as a Distemper shot. It contains vaccinations for four common viral and bacterial diseases of dogs, including parvo and distemper. Puppies should receive this shot at 6-8, 10-12, and 14-16 weeks of age. Puppies and dogs started after 16 weeks should still get two initial shots 3-4 weeks apart. This vaccine is given every 3 years after initial 1 year vaccine.
Leptospirosis(L4)– This show is also known as a Lepto shot. It contains vaccinations for the four most common strains of Leptospirosis. Puppies should receive this shot at 10-12 weeks and 14-16 weeks of age. Puppies and dogs started after 16 weeks should still get two initial shots 3-4 weeks apart. This vaccine is given annually.
RABIES – Vaccination for Rabies is required by law. Pups should receive this vaccination at 16 weeks along with their DA2PV + L4 shot. The first booster is given one year after the initial injection; after that boosters are given every three years.
Vaccinations for Lyme disease and for Bordetella (Kennel Cough) are also available; contact us with any questions you may have regarding these.
Intestinal parasites are common in puppies. The only way to detect them is by examining a fecal (stool) sample under a microscope. Bring a stool sample in for examination at least once during your puppy’s
initial visits and at least annually after that.
Heartworm disease is a major killer of dogs and is on the rise in Michigan. The adult heartworm gets its name from the location of infection in the heart and pulmonary arteries of dogs. These parasites are carried by mosquitoes, and dogs are in danger whenever mosquitoes are present. Dogs must be checked for heartworms every year, and should receive preventive medication throughout the year. All dogs should be on a monthly preventive to eliminate any larval heartworms acquired during the previous month. We will send you a reminder every year to bring your dog in for a heartworm test, and to pick up more heartworm medication. Very young puppies need not be tested, but must begin prevention early. Please alert us if your dog travels south with you during the winter so we can provide extra medication for a safe trip.
Spaying (females) and castration (males) is performed after 6 months of age. Females should be spayed before their first heat to maximize health benefits and prevent unwanted pregnancies; males should be done before 1 year to reduce roaming and aggression. There is no benefit to waiting until the dog is older.
A good tooth care program starts at an early age. Dogs can develop severe periodontal disease; prevention includes regular teeth cleaning. Ask us for information on tooth care programs.