The below recommendations are current as of 2014.
6 to 8 weeks of age: C3 vaccination or DHP vaccination (Distemper, Hepatitis & Parvo)
10 weeks of age (previously 12 weeks of age but this changed around 2009): C5 vaccination given in two components
16 weeks of age: Final C3 vaccination
Your puppy SHOULD have had its first vaccination prior to you picking it up. If not, then it can be done at the health check. A puppy’s first vaccination is given between 6 and 8 weeks of age. You must then keep your puppy strictly confined to your home so that it has NO contact with other dogs, and does NOT WALK where other dogs may have been. This is very important as PARVO virus can be picked up from the environment many months AFTER an infected dog has been there – up to 15 months under ideal conditions!
You should confine your puppy to your home for its first week with you as this is a quarantine period. IF your puppy came to you and had already contacted a virus or bacteria before you picked it up and took home, then this will cause symptoms within the first 4-5 days of that quarantine period. This rarely occurs these days because breeders and pet shops take great care of their puppies - but if your puppy does show signs of illness, then you and we know that it was not from you taking it out for walks and must have been infected prior to you collecting it!
ONCE you have had your puppy for one week and it is obviously healthy, it is important to begin socialisation immediately. This can include other dogs and puppies, as long as you know that they are fully vaccinated and healthy.
The second vaccination is given at 10 (to 12) weeks of age, but we advise the closer to 10 weeks of age, the better. It takes two full weeks to be protected from the FIVE diseases that are vaccinated against, so by giving the vaccine at 10 weeks of age, your pup can be out meeting other dogs, people and getting to know your neighbourhood BY 12 WEEKS of age. This socialization is one of the most important times in your pup’s development and the more interactions and experiences it can have while under your protective care, the better it will know how to respond to the same experience when it is older.
If you are careful, you may take your puppy out for a walk ONE week after its 10 to 12 week C5 vaccination because the Parvo protection is strong enough to allow this - BUT the respiratory disease are NOT YET COVERED. So avoid contact with ANY unknown dog or puppy until 2 weeks after this vaccination.
The third and last puppy vaccination is given at 16 weeks of age. This has been introduced in 2009 because of the change to triennial vaccination programs and ensures maximal Parvo protection. The first adult vaccination is given 12 months after the second puppy vaccination, usually between 13 and 15 months of age.
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