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Albuquerque VetCo

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valentines pet safety

What Shots Does My New Puppy Need?

valentines pet safetyDid you just get a new puppy for the holidays? What a great addition to your family. It is easy to get caught up in the excitement of a new puppy and still not be sure what they need as far as shots go. Some puppies will have already started their puppy shots when you get them. Make sure to ask the previous owner where they are in their shots and what shots they still need.

What are the puppy vaccines?

Puppy shots are probably the most frustrating because you have to keep coming to the vet repeatedly to get the whole series done. We know it is frustrating but it is important to complete the series, otherwise, your puppy will not have full immunity. Full immunity can help keep your puppy safe from potentially deadly diseases, which, with vaccines are mostly preventable. At Albuquerque Vetco we try to get you in and out as quickly as possible during our shot clinics so you don’t have to spend too much time getting vaccines.

Here is a good overview of puppy shots.

Bordetella Bronchiseptica

This highly infectious bacterium. It is a mandatory vaccine for kennels and doggy daycares and a very good idea for all dogs. Bordetella, aka Kennel cough, causes severe coughing fits, whooping, vomiting, and, in rare cases, seizures and death. This is vaccine takes 10 days to 2 weeks to reach effectiveness and kennels/doggie daycares, and even groomers will often require proof of vaccine. Bordetella can live on surfaces for up to a week, which means your puppy can catch it by going on a walk, even if they never meet another dog.

Canine Distemper

This is a severe and highly contagious virus. It is cross-species with skunks and raccoons. It can be transmitted through the air or through food and water bows. It causes discharges from the eyes and nose, fever, coughing, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, twitching, paralysis, and, often, death. There is no cure for distemper. Treatment focuses on helping treat symptoms and hoping your dog is able to come through.

Canine Hepatitis

This has nothing to do with human hepatitis. This is another highly contagious virus. It affects the liver, kidneys, spleen, lungs, and eyes. Symptoms include fever, congestion, vomiting, jaundice, pain around the liver, and stomach enlargement. There is no cure and it can kill your dog. A vet will try to help manage the symptoms and hope your dog makes it through.


One of several viruses that can cause kennel cough.


Parvo is highly contagious and puppies are at the most risk of catching it. It attacks their gastrointestinal system, causing symptoms such as loss of appetite, vomiting, fever, and bloody diarrhea. It can lead to rapid and sever dehydration which can kill a dog within 72 hours. There is no cure so your vet would treat the symptoms and try to keep your dog hydrated.


Rabies is a very serious viral disease. Vaccination against rabies is required by law. Rabies is typically transmitted through the bite of a rabid animal. If your animal is suspected of rabies, the state will put them down.

Puppy Vaccination Schedule

It is best for you to check with Vetco about what is the best puppy vaccination schedule. Some breeds of dogs are on different schedules. Here is an example of a typical schedule.

Puppy’s Age Recommended Vaccinations Optional Vaccinations
6 — 8 weeks Distemper, parvovirus Bordetella
10 — 12 weeks DHPP (vaccines for distemper, adenovirus [hepatitis], parainfluenza, and parvovirus) Influenza, Bordetella,
16 — 18 weeks DHPP, rabies Influenza, Bordetella per lifestyle
12 — 16 months DHPP, rabies Coronavirus, Bordetella
Every 1 — 2 years DHPP Influenza, Bordetella,
Every 1 — 3 years Rabies (as required by law) none