Every veterinarian has their protocol for vaccinating puppies and for follow-up vaccinations. These protocols can change over time due to new research findings for how long the vaccine’s immunity may last. Here is a general vaccine protocol for your Miniature Schnauzer puppy. Your puppy will have received a NeoPar (Parvo virus) vaccine at 4 to 5 weeks of age and the first combination vaccine at 8 weeks old. We will provide you with his/her shot records at pickup. All veterinarians agree vaccines are necessary, but they may differ on the frequency that they are given. In order to ensure the existence of immunity, titer testing may me done.
- 8 weeks of age: At Let-R-Buck Schnauzers we administer the first combination vaccine (Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvovirus, Parainfluenza) combination vaccine without leptospirosis.
- 12 weeks of age: Administer second combination vaccine
- 16 weeks of age: Administer the third combination vaccine, include leptospirosis in the combination vaccine if in an area where it occurs or if traveling to an area where it is a concern. Puppies should be fully vaccinated at this point. Some Vets will recommend another combination vaccine at this time. I would recommend you titer test before doing a 4th injection of the core vaccines.
- 19 weeks of age: Administer rabies vaccine. The timing of this vaccine may depend on the laws in your state. Check with your veterinarian and your local and state laws.
CORE VACCINATIONS NEEDED
Your puppy should receive a series of vaccinations with a combination vaccine that protects against parvovirus, distemper and hepatitis. Your puppy must also be vaccinated against rabies.
FACTORS THAT CAN AFFECT THE PUPPY VACCINATION SCHEDULE
The age at which puppies can effectively be immunized is related to the amount of antibodies the puppy receives from it’s mother. When high levels of maternal antibodies are still in the puppy’s bloodstream, they will block the effectiveness of the vaccine and it will not immunize the puppy. When the maternal antibodies drop to a lower level in the puppy, then immunization by the vaccine will occur. That is why the same shot is given 3 times in an attempt to catch the magic window of time when the maternal antibodies wear off.
Another factor to keep in mind is your state’s laws that govern the administration of the rabies vaccine. Some areas require yearly rabies vaccination. Other states call for vaccines every three years. But no matter where you live, a current canine rabies vaccine is required. Be sure to keep proof of your dog’s rabies vaccine with his medical records.
Vaccinations and Safety For Your Puppy
Your puppy has had his initial vaccine against Parvo, Distemper and other diseases at 8 weeks of age. This is the first of 3 combination vaccines in a series. Once your puppy has been vaccinated, veterinarians then recommend they receive a booster every 3 to 4 weeks, until they reach 16 weeks of age. YOUR PUPPY IS NOT IMMUNE TO THESE DISEASES UNTIL HE’S RECEIVED THE ENTIRE SERIES. Parvo is highly contagious and can be transmitted from dried up feces, shoes, tires, etc. I recommend that you not take your puppy to any public areas, parks, etc, until he has completed his full series. If you are traveling by car and must stop to let your puppy go potty, look for an area where no other dogs have gone (no public doggy areas at rest stops). I prefer to take a baggy and let him relieve himself in a non-doggy area, and then clean it up (invert baggie with hand inside and scoop it up, seal bag and dispose).
Your puppy has received a “negative for worms” at my veterinarian’s office, however puppies can pick up worms very easily from exposure to other dogs and feces. I recommend he be checked every few months with a stool sample to your vet. Also, if you live in an area where there are fleas, along with being an annoying, hard to get rid of pest, they also transmit tapeworms. So, you will want to use a product like Advantage or Frontline, to keep your puppy free of fleas.
Another product you will want to talk with your veterinarian about is heartworm medication. This would be given monthly, as dogs can be exposed to heartworms from something as simple as a mosquito bite.
Make sure to do a “safety check” around your house and put away any hazardous items that a puppy could get into: antifreeze spills, chemical cleaners, small toys they might choke on, large water buckets or toilets, electrical cords they can reach to chew on. If you have a hot tub, make sure the lid is closed, a fence around the swimming pool. Also check for poisonous plants that are in reach he could chew on. Remember, your puppy is a baby, just like a human baby, your home needs to be puppy/baby proofed!