Dog vaccination basics

Dog vaccination basics

This page contains relevant information on the dog vaccinations recommended by Vet Hospital Port Shepstone in the South Coast area – the dog vaccination basics. For more in-depth information on the topic, please refer to our cat & dog vaccinations page.

Vaccinations, also referred to as ‘jabs’ or inoculations, creates immunity against the vaccinated diseases. In dogs, vaccinations are given as injections under the skin.

To make sure all your dog’s relevant vaccinations are up to date, please phone our reception for enquiries.

Necessary or core canine vaccinations

The core dog vaccinations recommended for the Hibberdene – Port Shepstone – Shelly Beach area are against Canine Parvovirus (the incorrectly, so-called ‘cat-flu’ virus – severe gastrointestinal disease), Canine Distemper Virus (‘Hondesiekte’ – severe respiratory and neurological disease), Parainfluenza Virus (respiratory disease), Adenovirus Type 1 (Infectious Canine Hepatitis), Adenovirus Type 2 (respiratory disease) and Rabies Virus. The Adenovirus Type 2 vaccine protects against both Adenovirus Type 1 and Type 2.

Puppies are given primary vaccinations at 6 weeks, 9 weeks and then again at 12 weeks of age. When a puppy is not vaccinated at these exact ages a series of three vaccinations are given three weeks apart. All the necessary vaccinations are then boosted annually.

Optional or non-core canine vaccinations

The optional vaccines are catered more towards the lifestyle of a dog. One disease that we frequently encounter at Vet Hospital Port Shepstone is Bordetella bronchiseptica (Kennel cough), especially in young dogs and dogs that are exposed to other unknown canines during times such as puppy school training, dog shows, training, travelling, kennelling and working dogs. The Kennel cough vaccine is a single jab, lasts for about six months and can be given with or separate from the core canine vaccines.

The vaccination consultation

At Vet Hospital Port Shepstone, we use the annual vaccination consultation to ‘catch up’ on your pet. Where possible, the attending veterinarian will do a full clinical exam and answer questions or concerns you might have about your pet.


Being sniffers and chewers, dogs, unlike humans, find themselves in situations where they are exposed to high amounts of worm eggs. Routine deworming is necessary to keep your dog healthy. The standard protocol for deworming dogs are 3 to 4 times a year or every 3 to 4 months. During the vaccination consultation, the attending veterinarian will also enquire about the last deworming date and suggest the best dewormer if deworming is not up to date.

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