Necessary Dog Vaccinations

Dog vaccinations are important to keep your pet healthy and to prevent common canine diseases. There are a few vaccinations that are necessary for all dogs, while others may be recommended by your vet, depending on the health history, your geographic location and the genetic coordinates of your pet. Puppies should be vaccinated and then they should receive a booster every year or as indicated by the vet.

Necessary Vaccinations

The necessary vaccinations for a puppy are known as the DHLPPC vaccinations. These are six vaccinations that are combined in a single vaccine that can be administered when the puppy is 8 weeks old, and then again as boosters at 12 and 16 weeks.

The DHLPPC is a vaccination that will protect against the following diseases:

  • Canine distemper
  • Hepatitis
  • Leptospirosis
  • Parvovirus
  • Parainfluenza
  • Corona virus

The dog should also receive a rabies vaccination at the age of 16 weeks. Booster shots are recommended on a yearly basis. Some vets may only recommend boosters every three years.

Distemper Vaccination

The distemper vaccine is part of the DHLPPC vaccine and will protect against a highly contagious virus that can be fatal. Distemper is actually an upper respiratory infection manifested through elevated fever and neurological signs.

Hepatitis or the Adenovirus 2

The hepatitis vaccine protects against the adenovirus 2 that can be fatal in dogs. The virus is spread through urine and feces and will cause kidney and liver damage. The disease manifests through fever, lack of appetite, lethargy, stomach pain, diarrhea or blood in the stool.


Leptospirosis is a disease that will cause liver and kidney damage and may be fatal. The disease is highly contagious and may also be transmitted to humans through urine and feces. The disease manifests through fever, lethargy, lack of appetite and jaundice.


Parainfluenza is a virus that can cause an upper respiratory infection. The virus is spread through air or direct contact with an infested animal. The disease can be fatal in puppies.


The parvovirus causes an intestinal disease and will manifest through vomiting, diarrhea and severe dehydration. The virus may be contracted through feces or air. The severe dehydration may result in death. The disease often occurs in puppies that haven't been vaccinated.

Corona Virus

The corona virus will cause an intestinal disease and vomiting and diarrhea, which will lead to dehydration. This virus can be deadly if the dog is not vaccinated.


The rabies vaccine is necessary, as rabies is a disease affecting the nervous system. Rabies is a deadly disease.

Other Vaccines

The vet may recommend the administration of other vaccines that are not compulsory, but will protect your pet from some common diseases.

The Bordetella vaccine will protect the dog against kennel cough, which is not a fatal disease but may cause complications and can weaken the pet. This disease may be contracted in boarding facilities, so the vet will only recommend this vaccine if the dog is likely to go to such boarding or grooming facilities where the virus can be contracted.

Other recommended vaccines may be against Lyme disease and giardia.