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Why Should I Vaccinate My Dog?

Why Should I Vaccinate My Dog?

Following the recommended vaccine schedule for your dog helps keep them safe from serious, often deadly diseases. Here, our Houston County vets share the reasons why it's important to vaccinate your dog and when they should be getting their vaccines.

Why Vaccinate Your Dog

Similar to the vaccines that are made for humans, dog vaccinations are made to keep your pup safe from a variety of serious illnesses and diseases that could be threatening to their life.

You may think that it's a waste of time and money to vaccinate your dog, but it's very important for them to get their shots. Also, the vaccinations themselves will probably cost less than treating the disease they protect your pooch from.

Does My Dog Require All Available Vaccines?

The vaccines our vets recommended for dogs in the Houston County area include immunizations to help prevent bordetella, distemper, parvovirus, hepatitis, and rabies.

Your vet will be able to recommend the vaccines they deem appropriate for your dog based on their age, where you live, and your dog's lifestyle.

Dog & Puppy Shot Schedules

Puppy Vaccination Schedule

6 - 8 Weeks

  • *DHPP Shot 1
  • Lyme
  • Influenza Virus-H3N8
  • Influenza Virus-H3N2

10 - 12 Weeks

  • Influenza Virus-H3N8
  • Influenza Virus-H3N2
  • DHPP Shot 2
  • Bordetella
  • Leptospira
  • Lyme
  • Rabies

14 - 16 Weeks

  • DHPP Shot 3
  • Bordetella Booster
  • Leptospira Booster

Adult Dog Vaccine Schedule


  • Bordatella
  • Leptospira
  • Lyme
  • Rabies
  • Influenza Virus-H3N8
  • Influenza Virus-H3N2

Every 3 Years

  • DHPP Booster
  • Rabies

*DHPP: this vaccine protects against Distemper, Adenovirus, Parainfluenza, and Parvovirus.

Age Restrictions

Ask your vet which vaccines they believe are appropriate for your pooch. Really young puppies and dogs in their senior years that have compromised immune systems aren't eligible for all of the shots listed above.

Possible Dog Vaccination Side Effects

Some dogs might develop allergic reactions to one or more of their shots. This is usually caused by a sensitivity they have to an individual ingredient in a specific vaccine. Different breeds tend to have a higher risk of developing a reaction to some ingredients.

German shepherds, various collies, and some sheepdogs are known to be sensitive to individual vaccinations. Your vet will skip any vaccines that contain ingredients that your dog may be sensitive to.

Usually, when dogs develop a reaction they are mild, short in duration, and not as dangerous as the diseases the vaccines protect your dog from. Some mild reactions include lethargy, bumps/lumps, and cold-like symptoms.

Keep in mind, it's very rare for dogs to develop a serious reaction after being vaccinated, such as facial swelling, diarrhea, vomiting, and anaphylaxis. If your dog is developing a reaction after receiving a vaccine call your vet immediately.

Why Vaccines are Important for Dogs

Vaccinations are a critical part of your canine companion's preventive health care. Taking your pooch to the vet for their shots early in life, then routinely bringing them back for their booster shots when they are an adult, provides your dog with their best chance at life-long excellent health. 

Contact our Houston County vets today if it's time for your pup's shots.

New Patients Welcome

Smith Animal Hospital is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of Houston County companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

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