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Vaccination is one of the most important measures of preventative care for pets and is the most effective way of protecting them against serious diseases.

dog health check

How do dog vaccinations work?

Dog vaccinations work similarly to when humans have an injection, by inserting a small amount of the viral and bacterial antigen into the pet’s body. The body’s white blood cells quickly react to the antigen and learn to develop a protective response against the disease.

If your pet has been vaccinated against a disease and comes into contact with the virus, their system has already learnt a natural response to fight it off. The immune system recognises the antigens from the initial contact and activates a rapid defence response within a number of hours, to neutralise the disease.

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Animal Trust

Prevention is better than cure

At Animal Trust, our mission is to ensure all pet owners have access to the most affordable care, without compromising on the quality of treatment.

If your dog is not vaccinated, getting the following conditions can be extremely serious, as unfortunately, there still isn’t an available cure for all viral or bacterial diseases, and despite the advances in modern medicine, some unvaccinated dogs that get these conditions do not survive.

Many insurance policies will also require you to keep your pet’s preventative treatments up-to-date, so your policy is still valid to make a claim.

What do puppy and dog vaccinations protect against?

If you’re visiting a veterinary clinic to take your pet for their vaccinations, the vet will run a nose to tail health check to ensure they’re healthy enough to be administered a vaccine. The health check will include checking your pet’s weight, the health of their fur, ears, eyes, teeth and their temperature to detect any possible signs of infection or being unwell. If your pet is sick, they will need to make a full recovery before receiving their vaccinations.

Bringing a new puppy home

What vaccinations do puppies need?

When they’re born, puppies are naturally protected against diseases from the intake of their mother’s milk, which contains the antibodies required to fight infections. This is called maternal immunity and lasts during the earliest stages of a puppies life. While maternal immunity keeps pups safe, it also interferes with vaccines so we have to wait until the level of antibodies drops to administer the vaccination.

Once a puppy is old enough, usually at eight weeks old, they can have their first vaccine, which is followed up two weeks later by a second vaccination to complete the primary set. Because immunity takes a while to develop, it is recommended to not take your pet outside to high-risk areas for at least one week after the second vaccine.

Does my dog need a vaccination?

How long do dog vaccinations last?

Once a pet has had their initial vaccinations, we recommend you provide a ‘booster’ vaccination annually. This helps to remind your dog’s immune system to continue protecting the body against the disease.

We don’t need to boost every element of the vaccine annually as some parts of the immunity last longer than others. Immunity to Parvovirus, for example, will typically last three years, but a disease like leptospirosis requires boosters every year.

While vaccines are extremely safe to give on a yearly basis, some owners prefer us to take their pet’s blood to test their immunity levels, before administering the vaccine.

If you have adopted an older dog and are unsure whether their vaccinations are up-to-date, your vet can restart the vaccination process, just like when they were a puppy. This is the best way to ensure your pet is protected from serious diseases.

Getting your dog vaccinated

Animal Trust is a not for profit business, which means that every penny earned is invested back into our clinics to update and provide our patients with the best treatment and facilities available for sick pets.

We want to provide the best treatments for your pets, which is why our dog vaccination price includes preventative treatment for worms at no extra cost.

If your puppy or dog needs vaccinating, contact your local Animal Trust clinic to book an appointment. If you’re already registered at another practice, this is no problem at all; you are more than welcome to visit one of our clinics in the north-west. Register your pet using our online registration form to speed up the process.

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