Puppy Care

Learn everything you need to know about vaccinations, flea treatment, worm treatment and so much more!



Vaccinations

When a puppy is born they are partially protected from external infections via immunity transferred to them through the milk of their mother. However, this will only protect them during the first few weeks of life. Vaccination is then needed to protect your puppy from a wide range of life threatening diseases. We vaccinate puppies against 4 different diseases:


  • Distemper

  • Infectious Hepatitis

  • Parvovirus

  • Leptospirosis


In order to provide immunity against all of the diseases listed above for your puppies first vaccinations they will require two separate injections, administered four weeks apart.

The 1st vaccinations can be given from 6 weeks of age. The 2nd vaccination is then given 4 weeks after the first. Regular booster injections are required every year to ensure that your pet is protected throughout his life. We alternate between full and part boosters to ensure your dog gets just what they need and are not over-vaccinated.

Flea and Tick Treatments

Treating your puppy against fleas and ticks is strongly advised. The flea is an ectoparasite, which feeds on the blood of your pet. They can make life for you and your pet very miserable with a vicious cycle of biting and scratching.


Fleas can also transmit tapeworm to your pet. A regular flea treatment program will ensure no fleas are seen on your pet. Ticks are another parasite that attach themselves to your pet. They are arachnids and have 8 legs and are related to spiders, mites and scorpions. Ticks can be removed but often cause discomfort to your pet.


There are plenty of flea and tick treatments available for your pet and it can often be confusing. They come in the form of spot on treatments, usually applied to the back of the neck, and tablets.


Nexgard Chewable Tablet - Minimum age 8 weeks

Treats against fleas and ticks


Nexgard Spectra Tablet - Minimum age 8 weeks

Treats against fleas, ticks, roundworm, heartworm, hookworm, and whipworm.


Stronghold (spot on) - Minimum age 6 weeks

Treats against fleas, roundworm, heartworm, ear mites, sarcoptic mange.


Worm Treatments

Worms are another parasite that are common in our pets. Worms are endoparasites, this means they live inside your pet, often without you even knowing. Your puppy can pick up worms from places such as the local park and even your own back garden. Worm eggs and larvae can be passed from the mother through the placenta or from the milk.


There are different types of worms all of which pose different risks to your pet if untreated. Worms can cause health issue not only for your puppy but also for you and your family.


Panacur (paste or granules) - Minimum age 2 weeks

Treat at 2 weeks, 5 weeks, 8 weeks and 12 weeks of age.


Milbemax (tablet) - Minimum age 6 weeks

Treat monthly until 6 months old, then every 3-6 months.


Microchips

This involves implanting a tiny ID chip into the loose skin between the shoulder blades. It’s carried out during a consultation, usually at the time of 2nd vaccination (or under general anaesthetic when neutering). Your puppy may already be microchipped when you collect him/her. A microchip is £10.


Neutering

Neutering is the general term used for the surgical removal of the reproductive organs in both male and female dogs and cats. Castration is the removal of both the testicles in the male cats and dogs, spaying is the removal of the ovaries and uterus in the females. If you decide that you would like to get your pet neutered, we would generally suggest that male dogs can be castrated between 4-12 months according to their breed and temperament and bitches spayed from 5 months of age. The operation should not be performed if the bitch is showing any signs of being in season or of a false pregnancy.


Diet

Feed your puppy a well-balanced and complete ‘puppy’ diet - there is a huge selection of dog foods available today and it can be difficult to know which to choose. Whichever you decide to feed, it is important to ensure the diet is tailored for the appropriate age, weight and activity of your dog. For example, a Yorkie will have very different nutritional requirements to a Great Dane! Similarly, the requirements of a domestic pet dog will vary greatly from those of a working border collie. Read the food packaging to ensure it is suitable for your dog, a large dog breed will need food developed specifically for large breeds.


Remember, a puppy is growing and developing all the time and in order to stay fit and healthy and avoid physical abnormalities – he/she will need a suitable diet.


It is also important to check how much you need to feed, each should provide a feeding guide on the packaging to help you and will vary according to your dog’s age, weight and breed – do try to stick to the guidelines as an overweight puppy results in an overweight adult dog with health problems. Our practice Nurses are happy to discuss dietary requirements with you.


Insurance

Veterinary fees can be a concern for many pet owners and unfortunately there is no National Health Service (NHS) for pets. Every practice is different and will have different overheads so there is no standard fee within the veterinary profession. With advances in veterinary medicine we can offer high levels of care to your pets but this does come at a cost and some conditions, particularly those that require referral to a specialist can be very expensive to treat.


That’s where pet insurance comes in. Having a good pet insurance policy allows you to concentrate on what’s best for your pet, knowing help is there for the cost of unexpected treatments, especially as 1 in 3 of our pets may require urgent veterinary treatment each year. However, it’s important to be aware that not all pet insurance is the same. Some policies limit the amount of time or money that you can claim for, so we suggest that you don’t choose a policy based on price alone.

COVID-19 Information.

We have updated precautionary measures in an effort to keep our staff and their families and you, our clients, safe from the infection while fulfilling our obligations to your pets and stock.

Learn more at ottervets.co.uk/coronavirus

Chandlers' Lane, Sidmouth

Devon, EX10 9BX

64 Mill Street, Ottery St Mary

Devon, EX11 1AF