All dogs should be vaccinated against Parvovirus, Leptospirosis, Distemper and Infectious Canine Hepatitis. We also recommend that dogs are vaccinated for Canine Infectious Tracheitis (Kennel Cough / Park Cough).
When puppies are newly born they acquire antibodies from their mother’s milk. Provided their mother was vaccinated, the antibodies given to the puppy will provide some protection against disease for the first few weeks of life. These antibodies however also stop vaccines from being effective in very young puppies. We therefore advise giving puppies their first vaccination between six and eight weeks of age, when their maternal antibody levels have dropped.
Booster vaccinations are needed on a yearly basis as the protection from the primary course of immunisation does not last forever. The cost of the vaccination includes a full health check and clinical examination by the vet, together with advice on your dog’s healthcare.
We recommend your dog is vaccinated yearly against Leptospirosis and Kennel Cough, and every three years for Distemper, Hepatitis and Parvovirus after the initial booster. We will record your pet’s vaccinations on our computer system, so this will be done automatically for you.
Parvovirus causes severe vomiting and diarrhoea in susceptible dogs, often resulting in death. This virus is highly resistant in the environment and direct contact with an infected dog is not needed. The incidence of Parvovirus is increasing and we unfortunately see several cases of Parvovirus each year.
Leptospirosis can cause either a sudden severe disease with a fever, vomiting, dehydration (and often death), or a more chronic disease leading to progressive kidney and/or liver failure. The disease is usually caught by contact with contaminated water, but can also be caught directly by contact with infected urine. Leptospirosis is infectious to people and can cause serious illness (Weil’s disease). We use the Nobivac Leptospirosis vaccine which provides better protection against the different strains of the disease.
Distemper causes a fever initially, often with vomiting, diarrhoea, coughing and cracking of the nose. Hardening of the foot pads, fits and pneumonia sometimes develop. It is usually caught from contact with the ’aerosol’ produced when an infected dog coughs or sneezes.
Infectious Canine Hepatitis in an unvaccinated dog typically causes vomiting, abdomenal pain, low blood pressure, collapse and often death. A “blueness” of the eye may be noticeable. It is caught from contact with urine, faeces or saliva from an infected dog. In dogs whose vaccination boosters have lapsed it can cause a chronic hepatitis resulting in liver failure.
Kennel Cough has many names, including Park Cough and Infectious Canine Tracheitis. It is not a single disease, but rather a group of diseases with very similar signs. The main infectious agents responsible are Parainfluenza and Bordetella bronchiseptica. Affected dogs typically have a distinctive cough, which in mild cases is quite soft but in more severe cases is often described as “honking”. Kennel Cough is rarely life threatening, but the cough can be very unpleasant and persist for several weeks.
Our vets and nurses provide a 24 hour emergency service from our Bicester Veterinary Hospital.