Once your dog has had his vaccination course, he will require annual booster vaccinations to ‘top up’ his immunity and keep him fully protected. This is done via a yearly injection, if you let this lapse then your dog will be at risk and you will have to start the vaccination course again

We vaccinate against Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvo Virus and Leptospirosis.

The diseases

Distemper causes listlessness, fever, coughing, diarrhoea and vomiting. Convulsions and paralysis may also occur in the final stages. This disease is often fatal. It is highly contagious and is spread by discharge from the nose and eyes of infected dogs. The distemper virus attacks many organs, including the nervous system, which may cause permanent damage if the dog recovers.

Infectious Canine Hepatitis symptoms are similar to those of early stage distemper, causing liver failure, eye damage and breathing problems. The disease is transmitted via bodily secretions such as urine, faeces and saliva.

Parvo Virus is a very contagious and wide spread disease. Bristol is classed as an area of high risk for this disease. Spread through infected faeces, this highly resistant virus can remain in the environment for many months. Symptoms include diarrhoea and vomiting (usually haemorrhagic), listlessness and high fever. The disease is severe in young puppies and often fatal.

Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease which attacks the liver and kidneys. It is transmitted via contact with water contaminated with infected urine. Symptoms include vomiting, lethargy and abdominal pain. In advance stages of the disease, dogs may have an increased thirst and become hypothermic.

Extra vaccines available

Rabies has been eliminated from the UK and so there is no need to vaccinate against this unless you plan to take your dog abroad. Please ask for more information about the Pet Travel Scheme if you plan to travel with your dog.

Kennel cough Please inform the veterinary surgeon if you would like your puppy vaccinated against kennel cough as this is not routinely included in the puppy vaccination course. Kennel cough is a highly contagious disease of the dog’s respiratory tract. Dogs of all ages can be affected and signs include a harsh, dry, convulsive cough – very much like whooping cough in humans. It is passed from dog to dog via airborne droplets and by direct nose to nose contact. Dogs are at risk whenever and wherever they gather together – at boarding kennels, shows, training classes and the local park.

Kennel cough in an otherwise healthy adult dog is usually self limiting. However some may be treated with a course of antibiotics until the cough subsides, normally after a few weeks.

If your dog is likely to be at an increased risk, you should consider vaccination. An intranasal vaccine (a few drops of a liquid introduced into one nostril) stimulates immunity to the two most common bacterial and viral agents that cause kennel cough. This means that potentially your dog could still get kennel cough even if he has been vaccinated, however this risk is greatly lowered with the vaccination. We advise vaccinating three weeks before your dog is exposed to an environment of perceived risk (e.g. boarding kennels) to allow a good level of immunity build up. The vaccination provides continuous protection for 12 months.

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