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Vaccination Recommendations For Dogs


Race Foster, DVM
Marty Smith, DVM
Holly Nash, DVM, MS
Drs. Foster & Smith, Inc.

Vaccines are now being divided into two classes. 'Core' vaccines for dogs are those that should be given to every dog. 'Noncore' vaccines are recommended only for certain dogs. Whether to vaccinate with noncore vaccines depends upon a number of things including the age, breed, and health status of the dog, the potential exposure of the dog to an animal that has the disease, the type of vaccine and how common the disease is in the geographical area where the dog lives or may visit.

The AVMA Council on Biologic and Therapeutic Agents' Report on Cat and Dog Vaccines has recommended that the core vaccines for dogs include distemper, canine adenovirus-2 (hepatitis and respiratory disease), and canine parvovirus-2.
Noncore vaccines include leptospirosis, coronavirus, canine parainfluenza and Bordetella bronchiseptica (both are causes of 'kennel cough'), and Borrelia burgdorferi (causes Lyme Disease). Consult with your veterinarian to select the proper vaccines for your dog or puppy.

AVMA Vaccination Recommendations for Dogs

Component
Class
Efficacy
Length of Immunity
Risk/Severity of Adverse Effects
Comments
Canine DistemperCoreHigh> 1 year for modified live virus (MLV) vaccinesLow
MeaslesNoncoreHigh in preventing disease, but not in preventing infectionLongInfrequentUse in high risk environments for canine distemper in puppies 4-10 weeks of age
ParvovirusCoreHigh> 1 yearLow
HepatitisCore High> 1 yearLowOnly use canine adenovirus-2 (CAV-2) vaccines
RabiesCoreHighDependent upon type of vaccineLow to moderate
Respiratory disease from canine adenovirus-2 (CAV-2)NoncoreNot adequately studiedShortMinimalIf vaccination warranted, boost annually or more frequently
ParainfluenzaNoncoreIntranasal MLV - Moderate Injectable MLV - LowModerateLowOnly recommended for dogs in kennels, shelters, shows, or large colonies; If vaccination warranted, boost annually or more frequently
BordetellaNoncoreIntranasal MLV - Moderate Injectable MLV - LowShortLowFor the most benefit, use intranasal vaccine 2 weeks prior to exposure
LeptospirosisNoncoreVariableShortHighUp to 30% of dogs may not respond to vaccine
CoronavirusNoncoreLowShortLowRisk of exposure high in kennels, shelters, shows, breeding facilities
LymeNoncoreAppears to be limited to previously unexposed dogs; variableRevaccinate annuallyModerate
A possible vaccination schedule for the 'average' dog is shown below.

Dog Vaccination Schedule
Age Vaccination
5 weeks
Parvovirus: for puppies at high risk of exposure to parvo, some veterinarians recommend vaccinating at 5 weeks. Check with your veterinarian.
6 & 9 weeks
Combination vaccine* without leptospirosis.
Coronavirus: where coronavirus is a concern.
12 weeks or older
Rabies: Given by your local veterinarian (age at vaccination may vary according to local law).
12 & 15 weeks**Combination vaccine
Leptospirosis: include leptospirosis in the combination vaccine where leptospirosis is a concern, or if traveling to an area where it occurs.
Coronavirus: where coronavirus is a concern.
Lyme: where Lyme disease is a concern or if traveling to an area where it occurs.
Adult (boosters)§
Combination vaccine
Leptospirosis: include leptospirosis in the combination vaccine where leptospirosis is a concern, or if traveling to an area where it occurs.
Coronavirus: where coronavirus is a concern.
Lyme: where Lyme disease is a concern or if traveling to an area where it occurs.
Rabies: Given by your local veterinarian (time interval between vaccinations may vary according to local law).
*A combination vaccine, often called a 5-way vaccine, usually includes adenovirus cough and hepatitis, distemper, parainfluenza, and parvovirus. Some combination vaccines may also include leptospirosis (7-way vaccines) and/or coronavirus. The inclusion of either canine adenovirus-1 or adenovirus-2 in a vaccine will protect against both adenovirus cough and hepatitis; adenovirus-2 is highly preferred.

**Some puppies may need additional vaccinations against parvovirus after 15 weeks of age. Consult with your local veterinarian.

§ According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, dogs at low risk of disease exposure may not need to be boostered yearly for most diseases. Consult with your local veterinarian to determine the appropriate vaccination schedule for your dog. Remember, recommendations vary depending on the age, breed, and health status of the dog, the potential of the dog to be exposed to the disease, the type of vaccine, whether the dog is used for breeding, and the geographical area where the dog lives or may visit.

Bordetella and parainfluenza: For complete canine cough protection, we recommend Intra-Trac II ADT. For dogs that are shown, in field trials, or are boarded, we recommend vaccination every six months with Intra-Trac II ADT.

Researchers at the Veterinary Schools at the University of Minnesota, Colorado State University, and University of Wisconsin suggest alternating vaccinations in dogs from year to year. Instead of using multivalent vaccines (combination vaccines against more than one disease), they recommend using monovalent vaccines which only have one component, e.g., a vaccine that only contains parvovirus. So, one year your dog would be vaccinated against distemper, the next year against canine adenovirus-2, and the third year against parvovirus. Then the cycle would repeat itself. Other researchers believe we may not have enough information to recommend only vaccinating every 3 years. Manufacturers of dog vaccines have not changed their labeling which recommends annual vaccinations. Again, each dog owner must make an informed choice of when to vaccinate, and with what. Consult with your veterinarian to help you make the decision.

Downloadable Vaccination Record Keeper, brought to you
by United Kennel Club, Inc.
Download a vaccination schedule here.
References and Further Reading:


Al-Sarraf, R. Update on feline vaccine-associated fibrosarcomas. Veterinary Medicine. 1998;729-35.

American Association of Feline Practitioners/Academy of Feline Medicine. Recommendations for Feline Leukemia Virus Testing. The Compendium on Continuing Education for the Practicing Veterinarian. 1997;1105-7.

Bell, FW. Recommendations for FeLV- and FIV-positive cats with cancer. In August, JR (ed.) Consultations in Feline Internal Medicine. W.B. Saunders Co. Philadelphia, PA; 1997;572-8.

Bergman, PJ; Couto, CG; Hendrick, MJ; Macy, DW; Richards, JR; Starr, RM (contributors). Vaccine-associated feline sarcoma symposium. Sponsored by the Vaccine-Associated Feline Sarcoma Task Force and the Arm & Hammer Division of Church & Swight Co., Inc. July 25, 1998.

Brakeman, L (ed.) Researchers suspect genetic cause for vaccine site sarcomas. dvm 1998; July 1, 41-45.

Cole, R. Rethinking canine vaccinations. Veterinary Forum; 1998 Jan;52-7.

Greene, CE. Immunoprophylaxis and immunotherapy. In Greene, CE (ed.) Infectious Diseases of the Dog and Cat. W.B. Saunders Co. Philadelphia, PA; 1998;717-750.

Jarrett, O. Development of vaccines against feline leukemia virus. In Kirk, RW; Bonagura, JD (eds.) Current Veterinary Therapy XI. W.B. Saunders Co. Philadelphia, PA; 1992;457-60.

Klingborg, DJ; Hustead, DR; Curry-Galvin, EA; Gumley, NR; Henry, SC; Bain, FT; et al. AVMA Council on Biologic and Therapeutic Agents' report on cat and dog vaccines. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association. November 15, 2002 (Volume 221, No. 10); 1401-1407.

Pfizer Animal Health. Duration of immunity in companion animals after natural infection and vaccination. Pfizer Animal Health; June 30, 1998.

Roitt, I; Brostoff, J; Male, D. Immunology. CV Mosby Company. St. Louis, MO; 1985.

Rosen, DK. Feline infectious diseases and rational vaccine protocols for immunization. Presented at the Wisconsin Veterinary Medical Association Convention. October 10, 1998.

Schultz, RD. Current and future canine and feline vaccination programs. Veterinary Medicine. 1998;233-253.

Tizard, I; Yawei, N. Use of serologic testing to assess immune status of companion animals. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association. 1998;213;54-60.

Veterinary Learning Systems. Recombinant vaccine technology. Supplement to The Compendium on Continuing Education for the Practicing Veterinarian. 1997;19(2).

Veterinary Learning Systems. Vaccine technology in the 21st century. Supplement to The Compendium on Continuing Education for the Practicing Veterinarian. 1998;20(8c).

© 2008 Foster & Smith, Inc.
Reprinted as a courtesy and with permission from PetEducation.com (http://www.PetEducation.com)
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