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Puppy Vaccination Schedule

One of the first things we recommend to new puppy owners is to visit a veterinarian to have their pet examined and put on a vaccine schedule. Today, our Pflugerville vets explain why those first puppy shots are important. We'll also share a puppy vaccination and deworming schedule to keep on hand. 

Why are puppy shots important?

Just like the array of vaccines designed for use in people, vaccines for dogs in the Pflugerville area help to protect your pet from a wide range of serious, and potentially even fatal, conditions and diseases that can spread rapidly between unvaccinated dogs. 

While it may seem inconvenient (and even a bit costly) to bring your new puppy to your vet's on a regular, frequent basis throughout their first year, your puppy's first vaccinations and their annual renewals are critical to protecting them from illness and ensuring they're set up to live a long, healthy and happy life. 

What illnesses will my puppy's vaccinations address?

Vaccines for puppies and adult dogs in Pflugerville can prevent and reduce the severity of illnesses like hepatitis, distemper, Bordetella, rabies, and parvovirus. Our veterinarians can recommend a shot schedule for your puppy based on where you live, your dog's age, lifestyle, and other factors.

What are the core vaccines my puppy will need?

Below, we list the core vaccines all puppies should get.

DHPP (Distemper, Hepatitis, Parainfluenza, Parvovirus)

This combination vaccine offers protection against canine distemper (D), infectious hepatitis/adenovirus (H) and parvovirus (P) in addition to parainfluenza (P). Vaccines for distemper, infectious hepatitis and parvovirus are categorized as core vaccines. This means that every dog should receive these, regardless of location or lifestyle. 


The lethal rabies virus can have devastating effects on the brain. Rabies, which is transmitted through contact with animal saliva, is almost always fatal. When symptoms of the deadly virus appear, dogs and other animals typically die within a few days. There is no treatment for the virus, so getting a rabies shot is critical to protecting your pet's health. Our Pflugerville veterinarians recommend the rabies vaccine as a core vaccination for puppies.

Are there any vaccines that are optional?

Although we highly recommend getting all the vaccines for your puppy, there are a few that you may be able to skip based on lifestyle and risk factors. These include:


Bordetella bronchiseptica is a bacteria that causes inflammation in a dog's upper respiratory system, resulting in coughing and illness and exposing your pet to secondary infections. Many veterinarians refer to the disease as kennel cough.

The Bordetella non-core vaccine is given to dogs that frequently spend time around other dogs in boarding, daycare centers, dog parks, shows and other social settings. 


Caused by leptospira bacteria that's often found in water and soil in lakes, streams and rivers, leptospirosis is a zoonotic disease, which means it can spread from animals to people. 

The potentially fatal illness can cause diarrhea, vomiting, loss of appetite, fatigue, muscle tenderness, fever, shivering, and other flu-like symptoms. Long-term, it can cause permanent kidney and liver damage.

The non-core vaccine can benefit dogs who are at increased risk for exposure. Ask your veterinarian if this vaccine is recommended for your pup based on their lifestyle. 

Puppy Vaccination Schedule Chart

6 - 8 Weeks

  • *DHPP (Distemper, Hepatitis, Parainfluenza, Parvovirus) Shot 1

10 - 12 Weeks

  • Booster: *DHPP Shot 2
  • Bordetella (Optional)
  • Leptospirosis (Optional)

14 - 16 Weeks

  • Booster: *DHPP Shot 3
  • Bordetella (Optional)
  • Leptospirosis (Optional)
  • Rabies
  • Spay (female)
  • Neuter (male)

12 to 16 Months

  • Final Booster: *DHPP Shot
  • Final Booster: Bordatella
  • Final Booster: Leptospirosis
  • Rabies

*DHPP: this vaccine protects your dog against a combination of illnesses: Distemper, Adenovirus, Parvovirus and Parainfluenza.

Age Restrictions

Ask your vet to find out more about what vaccines are appropriate for your dog when they are still a puppy. Depending on your pet's age, their immune system may not be strong enough to effectively be boosted by all shots. 

Is there a recommended schedule for deworming?

Puppies should be dewormed every two weeks starting at two weeks of age until they are three months old. After that, they should be dewormed monthly until they are six months old. Regular deworming is important to prevent the spread of parasites and keep your puppy healthy.

How much do vaccines for puppies cost?

The cost of your dog's shots will vary depending on your puppy's health status, age, lifestyle and exposure risks. During your puppy's visit to our vets in  Pflugerville, we will perform a comprehensive exam and recommend puppy vaccinations to suit their needs. 

Remember that investing in vaccinations for your puppy will almost certainly pay off in the long run, as preventive care is preferable to treating conditions and diseases that can cause serious illness and shorten your four-legged friend's life. Please do not hesitate to discuss any vaccine-related questions or concerns with your veterinarian; we are happy to answer any questions.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Is it time for your puppy's shots? Contact Pfennig Lane Animal Hospital today for advice and to book an exam.

New Patients Welcome

Pfennig Lane Animal Hospital is accepting new patients! Our experienced vets are passionate about the health of Pflugerville companion animals. Get in touch today to book your pet's first appointment.

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