Dog vaccines: the importance of vaccinating your dog
An adorable chocolate Cocker Spaniel puppy is being checked over by a friendly vet nurse.

Dog vaccines: the importance of vaccinating your dog

7 June 2023

Written by Dr. David Tweedle, BVetMed MRCVS Clinical Director
Reviewed by Dr Jill McMaster BVM&S MBA MRCVS, Veterinary Surgeon and in-house expert at BorrowMyDoggy on 8 Jun 2023

Vaccinating your dog is an essential part of keeping them happy and healthy, as vaccines provide immunity from harmful diseases. Dr Dave Tweedle, Clinical Director at the My Family Vet practice Natures Vet in Somerset, talks to us about the importance of staying up to date with your dog’s vaccines.

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Why should I vaccinate my dog?

Vaccinating your dog is essential for protecting them from life-threatening diseases, such as parvovirus, canine distemper, leptospirosis and infectious canine hepatitis.

If your dog hasn’t received its yearly vaccinations, they are at an increased risk of picking up these nasty illnesses. Without vaccination, your pet is vulnerable to picking up viruses that can often be fatal.

Even if your pet recovers from diseases such as parvovirus & leptospirosis, there are often long-term complications, which can cause lifelong discomfort for your dog.

Regular vaccination against rabies is also one of the requirements which need to be fulfilled to allow your pet to go on holiday with you.

To take your pet with you into an EU country, you’ll need to obtain an animal health certificate, known as an AHC. The AHC acts as a confirmation that your dog is microchipped and has been vaccinated against rabies.

How do dog vaccinations work?

When your dog is vaccinated, the process works in much the same way as it does when human’s get vaccinations. A small amount of the viral and/or bacterial antigen is injected into the dog. The dog’s white blood cells react against the antigen and they develop protection against the disease.

By building up a defence within your dog’s immune system, they’re able to fight off diseases, should they come into contact with them.

This article is for information only, and should never replace any advice, diagnosis or treatment from your veterinary surgeon. Always contact your local vet or out of hours vet without delay if you have any concerns about your dog.

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