How Failing to Vaccinate Can Affect Your Dog’s Long-Term Health and What Could Happen When Missed
We can all become absent-minded at times. At times, we have all missed paying a bill on time or missed an appointment because we forgot. Many pet owners can add having their pets vaccinated to that list. Some pet owners view being late on vaccinations as entirely acceptable and think their pet will be fine if they are brought in some time down the line. In reality, the situation is more urgent than these pet owners realize. Dr. Rand Spongberg and the team at All Creatures Care Cottage Veterinary Hospital offer vaccinations for your pet in Costa Mesa, CA.
Failing in making sure your pet gets the proper vaccinations (and on time) can lead to several negative consequences in the future. Let’s look at dogs specifically and how vaccinations are handled.
Schedule of Vaccinations for Your Dog
For a young puppy, their first year will likely consist of several trips to the vet. You may need to have your new little buddy checked for worms, fleas, and other pests. It is especially true if you have rescued them or adopted from someplace that has not had them already checked. You will also possibly want to spay or neuter your new dog. It is a practice that is highly recommended by vets. When your new dog reaches six weeks, it will be time to start looking into what vaccinations they need to make sure they are completely protected against any virus or diseases they may be susceptible to.
Potential Side-Effects of Vaccinating
Your puppy may not enjoy their first trips into the veterinarian’s office or the sensation of being stuck with a needle for the administration of the vaccination, but don’t worry, it’s no worse than when you go to your doctor for a shot. Your dog will feel a small pinch (depending on the size of the needle), and then it is over before they even know it. Your pet may fight getting into the carrier for the car ride and transfer to the vet but, since it is for their good, it is completely worth the added effort.
Once the vaccination is administered, there could be some mild side-effects. These could include a low-grade fever, decreased energy, and a reduced appetite. Don’t worry! This is completely normal. It is important, however, that you keep an eye on your dog and report any worrisome symptoms that you may notice so that action can be taken if necessary. Before you leave after the vaccination, your vet should provide you with instructions on what to watch for that would require you to reach out for assistance.
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How A Vaccination Works
We have all heard how vaccination is simply an injection of the disease we are being protected from, which is true. But it is not so ghastly when you think about why this is. When your immune system recognizes the vaccination and the threat it could pose to the body, antibodies are generated as a natural defense to fight off the disease. Memory cells are eventually formed which will be ready to defend when confronted with this same disease in the future. Your body is naturally becoming its own shield against the disease. The same goes for animals. When your dog is vaccinated, they are being made stronger and are being prepared to fight off the disease if they come across it later. Your dog will have a significant advantage when faced with microscopically hostile environments.
The Negative Effects of Missing a Vaccination
It is never safe to not have your pet vaccinated. It does not matter how you look at it. If your dog is not vaccinated, it will be vulnerable to several conditions, some of which could be fatal. Why take a chance? Let us look at a few diseases your dog could be vulnerable to when not vaccinated:
- Canine Parvovirus is one of the worst diseases your dog, especially when a puppy, could be infected with. Parvovirus affects the gastrointestinal tract and can kill your dog if not treated.
- Your dog will be susceptible to respiratory infections including kennel-cough and parainfluenza. These are both incredibly contagious and will rapidly progress. Puppies are especially susceptible to these.
- A particularly frightening situation, canine hepatitis will cause severe damage to your dog’s internal organs and can be fatal.
This all probably sounds very scary, and you’d do anything to make sure that your dog is protected from these. Luckily, some vaccinations help protect your dog from coming down with these afflictions. Depending on if your dog is an outside or inside pet, different vaccinations may be needed. Once you have received a vaccination schedule from your vet, must be followed to help protect your pet. It may even save their life.
If your pet needs vaccinations, please call Dr. Rand Spongberg and the team at All Creatures Care Cottage Veterinary Hospital. They are here for you and your pet and want the best for them. To schedule an appointment, please call (949) 430-7576 today.