Labrador puppy vaccinations

Vaccinating your new Labrador puppy is a critical part of their health care regimen. The vaccination schedule for puppies usually starts around the age of 6 to 8 weeks and continues until they are about 16 weeks old. Here’s a general guideline for the typical vaccines:

Initial Vaccinations (6 to 8 Weeks)

  • Distemper, Parvovirus: These are often combined in a single vaccine (often referred to as DHPP, which includes Distemper, Hepatitis, Parainfluenza, and Parvovirus).
  • Bordetella (optional): Especially recommended if the puppy will be boarded or in places with many other dogs.

Follow-up Vaccinations (10 to 12 Weeks)

  • DHPP Booster: A second round of the distemper, hepatitis, parainfluenza, and parvovirus vaccine.
  • Leptospirosis (optional): Often included with the DHPP in a combination vaccine, depending on the area you live in and the dog’s risk of exposure.
  • Canine Influenza (optional): Depending on your region and your dog’s exposure risk.

Additional Vaccinations (12 to 16 Weeks)

  • Rabies: Usually given at around 12-16 weeks of age. The timing can vary based on local laws and veterinary recommendations.
  • DHPP Booster: A third round of the DHPP vaccine.

Later Vaccinations

  • Booster Shots: After the initial puppy vaccination series, your dog will need booster shots. The DHPP is typically boosted at one year and then every 1-3 years, depending on the specific vaccine used and your veterinarian’s recommendation. Rabies is also boosted, usually every 1-3 years as mandated by law.

Other Considerations

  • Health Check: Your puppy should be healthy at the time of vaccination. Your vet will likely perform a health check before administering vaccines.
  • Deworming: Puppies are also commonly dewormed during their first few vet visits.
  • Heartworm Prevention: Often started around 8 weeks of age, depending on your geographic location and the vet’s recommendation.

Always follow the vaccination schedule recommended by your veterinarian, as it can vary based on regional disease risks, the puppy’s health, and specific lifestyle factors (like travel, exposure to other dogs, and local wildlife). Regular veterinary visits are important for more than just vaccines; they’re an opportunity for health screenings and for you to ask questions about your new Labrador’s health and care.

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