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Dog Vaccines

Core Vaccines

Recommended for all puppies and dogs.

Canine Distemper

  • Widespread in the dog population
  • Virus attacks all the mucous membranes
  • Clinical signs include eye and nose discharge, fever, poor appetite, coughing, vomiting, diarrhea, calloused nose and footpads
  • Infections can be mild and resolve or progress to neurological signs: seizures, tremors, and imbalance and limb weakness
  • Death may occur

Canine Parvovirus

  • Virus is found everywhere, shed by animals that appear normal
  • Attacks the intestines causing vomiting, diarrhea and intestinal bleeding
  • Damage occurs to the bone marrow, suppressing the immune system
  • Survival possible but requires supportive care

Canine Adenovirus-2 and Canine Parainfluenza

  • Viruses involved in kennel cough
  • Highly contagious
  • Transmitted via direct nose-to-nose contact or indirectly through the nasal secretions of infected dogs

These vaccines are given at approximately 8 weeks of age followed by 2 boosters 3-4 weeks apart and then every 3 years.


  • Transmitted through saliva of infected animals via a bite wound from wildlife such as raccoons, skunks, foxes and bats
  • The virus attacks nervous tissue
  • Death occurs within 10 days once symptoms present
  • Can be transmitted to humans
  • Ontario requires vaccination of all dogs

The first vaccine is given at 12-16 weeks of age, followed by a booster at 1 year, then every 3 years thereafter.

Optional/Non Core Vaccines

Canine Tracheobronchitis

  • Commonly called kennel cough
  • Causes hacking cough, appetite loss and a lack of energy
  • Usually resolves within 2 weeks
  • Secondary bacterial pneumonia or chronic bronchitis can develop
  • Canine adenovirus, canine parainfluenza virus and bordetella bronchiseptica bacteria involved
  • Recommended in dogs that are boarded, go to off-leash parks or frequent grooming facilities

This vaccine is given annually and can be given via an injection or intranasally.


  • Bacteria that occurs throughout the world
  • Affects both humans and numerous domestic animals
  • Infection through skin, mucous membranes, direct exposure to infected urine or by drinking affected water
  • Clinical signs: fever, increased drinking and urinating, vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, refusal to eat, depression
  • Treatable if caught early but can result in death due to liver and kidney failure
  • Vaccine protects against the four most common strains

This vaccine is given as two boosters 3-4 weeks apart, then annually.