Why Dog Vaccinations are Important
Although your new puppy will likely squirm and maybe even cry when getting his shots, dog vaccinations are just as important for your dog as people vaccinations are for your children or yourself. In fact, by keeping up on your dog’s vaccinations, you could be saving his life.
Vaccinations are injections of a small dose of a disease, which will prevent your puppy from developing that very disease. Just like immunizations in children, it is required by health departments and is the right thing to do for your dog.
There are 2 different types of vaccinations;they are a Killed Vaccine and a Modified Live Vaccine. A Modified Live Vaccine is the live disease being injected, while having been altered by the drug company to be unable to cause the disease it is protecting against. A Killed Vaccine is when the virus itself has been killed before any injection occurs.
Once vaccinations are given, your dog’s immune system will recognize the presence of a disease and will then create barriers or reinforcements (antibodies) to fight it off, should it appear. These barriers only last from six months to a year, which makes regular appointments extremely important for your dog.
A few of the more commonly heard of diseases that affect dogs are often at the top of a vaccination list. These include: Canine Distemper, Infectious Hepatitis, Rabies and Corona Virus.
Regular vaccinations can prevent your dog from contracting these diseases; however you should still be aware of what they are. Canine Distemper is caused by a virus that attacks the body and can be damaging to the dogs central nervous system. 50% of dogs who contract this disease will have a fatal outcome. It mainly affects middle aged dogs. Puppies and older dogs are usually safe from contracting it.
Another vaccination, which is important to your dog’s health and should not be confused with the human disease, Hepatitis is Infectious Hepatitis, which is a life threatening viral disease. It is transmitted through urine, saliva and feces. All ages of dogs are at risk for this disease. Fortunately, it’s not contagious to humans.
Vaccinations for Rabies are probably the most commonly talked about vaccine. The disease itself is the most well known in animals and can quickly affect humans through saliva and bites. Aggression, excessive salivation and erratic behavior will follow the onset of rabies, although it may not be as clear as “Cujo”, the famous rabid-infected dog in the movies.
Another disease that is commonly confused and is important to have vaccinations for is Corona Virus. This disease affects young dogs and is usually mixed up with Parvo, which is a totally different type of disease. Corona Virus is contagious and is passed through feces ingested by another dog, causing trouble with the intestinal system. This disease is usually treatable before Parvo sets in.
As you can see, there are many diseases that can affect, sicken, or even kill your beloved family member. Dog vaccinations are extremely important to yours and your dog’s health and it is your responsibility as a dog owner to have regular visits with the vet.
"A really companionable and indispensable dog is an accident of nature. You can't get it by breeding for it, and you can't buy it with money. It just happens along."
~ E B White, The Care and Training of a Dog