Charles here. The other day, Mom took me to the Pet Doctor to get my yearly checkup and vaccinations. I was scared at first but it really didn’t hurt and there are so many good reasons why I need to have vaccines. Mom is very conservative when it comes to putting stuff in our system, so she does a thing called a TITER, if possible, to see if I still have immunity from the last shot. If so, we wait. There are a lot of things that can protect me from getting horrible diseases. I get 4 core vaccines: distemper, infectious hepatitis, parvovirus, and rabies.
- Vaccinations protect me from getting diseases like rabies, which I can get from other animals.
- Vaccines protect me from airborne viruses like distemper, parvovirus, coronavirus (yes we get a Corona too), infectious canine hepatitis, bordetella, parainfluenza.
- There are also vaccines for things like Lyme disease (which I had when Mom first rescued me), which comes from ticks, and leptospirosis, from wild animals.
To determine what vaccines I need, Mom and the Vet, base it on 3 things:
- My Age – puppies need a lot of stuff to help their bodies build up resistance to certain bugs, but adults, like me, only need an occasional booster shot.
- Where we live – our luck is that the mid-Atlantic is rampant with ticks. This could mean Lyme disease and a whole host of other tick-borne diseases.
- Lifestyle: I am never boarded, I don’t go to day-care or the dog park, so my exposure to things like ‘kennel cough (bordetella), is low.
Don’t forget the Cats who should get some core vaccines too. They are different than us dogs. The need at a minimum: Feline herpesvirus-1/feline viral rhinotracheitis (Which Noel has. When Mom rescued her she was seriously ill), Calicivirus, and Panleukopenia. If they go outside, they need more things like Rabies and FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus).
Many Vets and Clinics offer low-cost, sometimes even free, vaccinations.
Take care of me and I will live a long, healthy, life.