Canine Vaccines

Is your dog at risk?

CANINE DISTEMPER: This virus attacks many body organs including the nervous system. Symptoms include listlessness, fever, coughing, diarrhea, vomiting and discharge from the eyes and nose. In the final stages, it can cause convulsions and paralysis. Dogs which appear to recover often proceed to develop neurological signs as they get older. Most dogs are at risk of exposure to this virus at some point in their lifetime and, even with supportive treatment, it is often fatal.

INFECTIOUS CANINE HEPATITIS: This virus primarily affects the dog’s liver. In the acute phase it can be spread among dogs by contact with urine, feces and other secretions. The effect of this infection varies from mild illness to death.

PARVOVIRUS: Parvo first appeared in 1978 as a highly contagious and debilitating disease. Symptoms include high fever, listlessness, vomiting and diarrhea. In severe cases it leads to shock and death. Puppies that recover are often left with residual cardiac abnormalities.

LEPTOSPIROSIS: This spirochete attacks the dog’s kidneys and liver. Infection results from contact with the urine of infected dogs, rats and other wild animals. The organism is frequently found in ground water pools, ditches and slow moving waterways. Symptoms can be severe and include loss of appetite, fever, jaundice and internal bleeding. The prevalence of this disease varies with geographical location. It is readily transmissible to humans.

CANINE CORONAVIRUS: This virus causes vomiting, diarrhea, inappitance and lethargy. It can be very severe in puppies, even lethal, especially if acting concurrently with other viruses.

TRACHEOBRONCHITIS: Often referred to as “kennel cough” this highly contagious disease causes inflammation of the trachea and bronchi. This condition can be caused by several airborne viruses and bacteria acting together or on their own. The most common among these are Canine Parainfluenza virus, Canine Adenovirus and Bordetella bronchoseptica. Infected dogs have a dry nonproductive cough.

LYME DISEASE: This is a tick-borne bacterial disease affecting both humans and animals. It was first reported in dogs in 1984. The bacteria, Borrelia burgdorferi, is transmitted to animals via blood-sucking ticks. When an infected tick bites, the bacterium is transmitted to the host animal. Lyme disease can exist in any area where Borelia burgdorferi infected ticks are found. Signs of Lymes disease in dogs include loss of appetite, lethargy, depression, fever, sudden onset of severe pain and lameness and arthritis.

RABIES: Rabies is a fatal disease that attacks the nervous system. All mammals are susceptible, including humans. It can be found in bats, raccoons and skunks. Rabies is a major health hazard. In many areas vaccination is required by municipal law and for travel outside Canada. If required for travel the initial vaccine can be given at 12 weeks of age.

GIARDIA: Recently a vaccine has become available for the prevention of Giardia. Giardia can be passed through the feces to contaminate ground/surface water sources. It is sometimes referred to as “Beaver Fever”. It can, but does not always, cause severe diarrhea. It can be treated effectively with oral Metroidazole. However, in some areas the water is heavily contaminated and prevention, through vaccination, may be recommended.

Baseline Canine Vaccine Protocol

Initial Vaccine Series

Booster Interval


8 wk

12 wk

16 wk




12 months Highly recommended for all dogs
Parainfluenza + + 12 months Highly recommended for all dogs
Leptospirosis + + 12 months Recommended for all dogs
Corona + + 12 months Recommended for all dogs
Adeno Adeno-2 + + 12 months Highly recommended for all dogs
Parvo + + + 12 months Highly recommended for all dogs
Bordetella + 12 months Recommended depending on lifestyle
Lymes + + 12 months Recommended if high risk lifestyle and geography

+ initially 12 then 36 months

Highly recommended for all dogs


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