2018 Vaccine Protocol

Recommended Vaccination Protocol

 Each year I update my vaccination protocol. This year’s major change is performing a distemper parvovirus titer after puppy vaccinations, proving immunocompentence as early as possible, and detecting those puppies who fail to produce adequate antibodies so action can be taken immediately. A downloadable PDF of the protocol is available at the bottom of the page.


Age                                                    Vaccine                             


10 weeks                                                         Parvovirus


14 weeks                                                         DAP (Distemper, adenovirus, parvovirus)


18 weeks                                                         Distemper/Parvovirus titer. If inadequate, repeat DAP and re-titer in 4 weeks.


22 weeks                                                         Rabies


1 year post last vaccination                             Distemper/Parvovirus titer if desired


1 year post initial Rabies vaccination              Rabies Vaccine 3 year, according to applicable laws

Perform vaccine titers for distemper and parvovirus every three years thereafter, if desired. However, a “low” titer in a dog who previously had protective antibody levels is not necessarily an indication for revaccination, as memory cells likely persist. Vaccinate for rabies virus according to applicable state laws.

As common sense and good medical practice would dictate, do NOT vaccinate females during heat, pregnancy or lactation. Do not vaccinate during times of stress such as: surgery, travel, boarding, grooming, illness or infection. Do not vaccinate puppies earlier than 8 weeks.

Note: This schedule is one I recommend. All protocols should be tailored to the individual patient’s needs and/or situation.


Best Practices for Vaccination of Dogs

Best Practices for Vaccination of Dogs



  1. In accordance with fundamental medical principles and vaccine manufacturers’ recommendations, vaccinate only healthy dogs. If there is a health condition present, it should be addressed, and the vaccine administered at a later date, when the condition is resolved.


  1. If blood testing, such as 4Dx or a complete blood count and body chemistry profile, is being run, wait for results before vaccinating the dog. If results are abnormal, resolve the abnormality before vaccinating.


  1. Do not administer more than one vaccine at a time.


  1. When spreading out vaccines, use a 4-week interval between them.


  1. A puppy’s initial vaccine should be administered no earlier than 10 weeks of age.


  1. Do not vaccinate females in season. Hormonal changes can alter a normal response to vaccines.


  1. Do not vaccinate at times of stress, such as during boarding, grooming, or at the time of surgery. Do not vaccinate dogs with a previous history of adverse reactions, autoimmune disease, or cancer. Utilize titers to assess immune system function.


  1. Kennel cough (Bordetella) is not a vaccine preventable disease.


  1. Canine influenza is typically a mild and self-limiting disease. Vaccination is not indicated for most dogs.


Grab your PDF copy here!

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