PetMed Animal Health Center

2400 Gateway Dive
Dubuque, IA 52003

(563)583-8387

dbqpetmed.com

Immunization and Wellness Care

Routine vaccinations play a very important part throughout your pet's life starting as soon as 8 weeks of age. These vaccinations protect against the most common diseases among dogs and cats to ensure a happy and healthy life.

Puppies/Dogs

Puppies require a series of vaccinations and dewormings from the time they are 8 weeks old until they are 16 weeks old. Dogs require yearly vaccinations to ensure the proper protection of these infections. 

Rabies: Every dog needs a rabies vaccine as soon as they are 16 weeks of age. Because humans can get rabies, it is required by law. Rabies is 100% fatal if contracted. The vaccine is good for 1 year. If the next year the rabies vaccine is given on or before the due date it was given the year before, the vaccine can be good for 3 years. Owners must for provide records showing that the dog is not overdue before it can be given the 3 year vaccine. 

Distemper (DHPP/CV): The distemper vaccine is important for all dogs, especially puppies. Distemper vaccines are started at 6 weeks of age and given every 3-4 weeks until the puppy is past 16 weeks old. If this schedule is not followed, it leaves the puppy open to the possibility of getting deathly ill.  Dogs older than 16 weeks old are given each year. It is required by law for boarding and grooming in state licensed facilities. 

  • Distemper-Considered to be a contagious and very serious virus that attacks a dogs respiratory, central, and gastrointestinal systems, the virus is passed along from dog to dog through saliva, blood, and urine. 
  • Hepatitis-This is a contagious disease that causes a slight fever, congestion of the mucous membranes, severe depression, marked leukopenia, and coagulation disorders. It is generally passed along from dog to dog through saliva, stool, and urine. 
  • Parvovirus-Canine Parvovirus is a highly contagious disease that can cause life-threatening illness. Once infected, the virus attacks quickly and divides blood cells within the dog. This virus also severely affects the intestinal tract of the dog. 
  • Parainfluenza Virus-This contagious respiratory virus contains the pathogens that cause the respiratory disease called kennel cough. 

Deworming: It is very common for puppies to have roundworms which are intestinal worms that may cause diarrhea, vomitting or your pet may not show any symptoms at all besides noticing them in their stools. If your puppy has never received any deworming medication before from a breeder, etc., your puppy will be dewormed along with being given the distemper vaccine. Once the puppy is 8 weeks old, he will be given a dewormer (typically pyrantel pamoate) and then another one at 11 weeks of age. Generally two doses are all that is needed. 

Bordetella (Kennel Cough): This vaccine is given annually to puppies of the age of 6 weeks. Kennel Cough is a contagious respiratory disease caused by many different types of viruses and bacteria. This vaccine is most compared to a "flu" vaccine in people-it is squirted up the nose and protects from the most common cause of kennel cough. Dogs who groom, board, do daycare, the dog park, shows, breeding, or any other activities where they interact with other dogs should get a bordetella vaccine. 

Lyme: Lyme disease is transmitted by deer ticks. It can cause fever, joint swellings, and in severe cares fatal kidney failure. It is important for dogs who hunt, camp, hike, live next to woods, or are otherwise exposed to ticks. The vaccine is given to puppies over the age of 8 weeks and is boostered 3-4 weeks later. It is then given yearly. 

Kittens/Cats

Kittens require a series of vaccinations and dewormings from the time they are 8 weeks old until they are 16 weeks old. Dogs require yearly vaccinations to ensure the proper protection of these infections. 

Rabies: Every cat needs a rabies vaccine as soon as they 16 weeks of age. Because humans can get rabies, it is required by law. Rabies is 100% fatal if contracted. The vaccine is good for 1 year. If the next year the rabies vaccine is given on or before the due date it was given the year before, the vaccine can be good for 3 years. Owners must for provide records showing that the dog is not overdue before it can be given the 3 year vaccine. 

Distemper (FVRCP): The distemper combo vaccine is recommended for all cats, especially kittens. The diseases it prevents are mostly highly contagious respiratory diseases. Distemper vaccines are started at 6 weeks of age and given every 3-4 weeks until the kitten is 16 weeks old. If this schedule is not followed, it leaves the kitten open to the possibility of chronic respiratory disease. Cats older than 16 weeks are given one vaccine and then it is boostered 3-4 weeks later. This vaccine is then given each year. It is required for boarding and grooming facilities.

  • Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis- This infectious disease is caused by the feline herpesvirus type-1. This virus is very species specific and is known to infect both domestic and wild cats. It is transferred through saliva and nasal and eye discharge of an infected cat to the non-infected cat. 
  • Calicivirus- This common respiratory disease in cats attacks the respiratory tract including the lungs and nasal passages. It also attacks the intestines, musculoskeletal system, and tongue by causing ulcerations.
  • Panleukopenia- Considered to be a highly contagious viral disease that is often fatal and affects cats worldwide. This virus attacks and invades rapid growing blood cells within the digestive system, developing nervous system, lymph tissue.

Feline Leukemia (Felv): Unlike people, leukemia in cats is caused by a virus. All new kittens and cats, especially farm and strays, should be tested for leukemia and FIV. Cats get leukemia when a cat that is infected with leukemia licks by mouth, eyes, or nose membranes of the uninfected cat, or by passing infected blood to a non-infected cat, or an infected mother car can also pass it to her kittens while she is pregnant. Any cat who goes outside should be vaccinated for leukemia. The problem is that even a cat is strictly indoors, they often find a way to sneak outside and so many people will vaccinate their indoor cats as well. The vaccine is given at or after 9 weeks and then boostered 3-4 weeks later. It is then given yearly.

Ferrets    

Ferrets are vaccinated only 1 vaccine at a time and are pre-treated with Benadryl first to lessen the severity of any reactions that may occur. 

Rabies: Every ferret needs a Rabies vaccine. It is required by law in numerous municipalities since humans can get rabies. Rabies is 100% fatal if contracted. Rabies can be given after 16 weeks of age. The vaccine is good for 1 year. 

Distemper: Ferrets can contract distemper from dogs and various wildlife such as coyotes, raccoons, skunks, mink and foxes. They can pick up the virus easily even by having their owner bring it on their clothing and from the air. Ferrets are vaccinated yearly for distemper, but not the same time as rabies. There is no specific treatment for distemper in ferrets at this time.