Your new puppy may come with some passengers and will be at risk at picking up fleas if in contact with other animals. We recommend the use of products from the vet, which will be a lot more effective than those from the supermarket or pet store. Old treatments, such as powders and collars, are not as efficient as liquids which are applied to the back of the neck or as oral tablets. Certain products are also highly effective against ticks.
Please contact us if you require further advice and our nurses will be happy to advise you on your individual circumstances.
Microchipping is a legal requirement for dogs.
If your pup is a pedigree animal, microchipping will have been performed by the breeder in order to register your puppy with the Irish Kennel Club (IKC). It is essential to change your puppy’s registration information on the IKC register.
If your puppy is not microchipped, we recommend you do so. Microchipping is a deterrent against theft and will help re-unite you with your pup if it goes missing. The microchip, approximately the size of a grain of rice, is inserted under the skin at the back of the neck. This is a relatively painless procedure. The microchip contains a unique barcode, which is registered on fido.ie. We will also give you a tag for your puppy’s collar.
Your puppy will need two vaccinations 4 weeks apart. A thorough health examination will be carried out at each vaccination visit to ensure your puppy is healthy. We will advise you on all aspects of your puppy’s health, training, diet and behaviour at your first consultation visit.
The vaccinations include protection against:
- Distemper – a virus that causes respiratory, gastrointestinal disease and seizures and is usually fatal
- Hepatitis – two viruses that cause an often fatal liver disease and jaundice
- Leptospirosis – four types of bacteria picked up from rivers, stagnant water or rats causing blood disorders, liver and kidney failure. This can also be transmitted to people
- Parvo virus – an often fatal viral infection causing bloody vomiting and diarrhoea
Puppies can be vaccinated at six weeks and have their vaccination course completed by nine weeks. For complete immunisation, please allow ten days after the second vaccination before you bring your puppy out for its first walk. Early vaccination will allow for early socialisation, enabling your young puppy to learn how to meet and greet other dogs without being aggressive. Re-vaccination is advised every year with a concurrent health examination.
Kennel Cough vaccine: Kennel Cough is a severe croup-like cough, distressing to both dog and owner, which can sometimes progress to cause pneumonia. For full protection, Kennel Cough vaccination is needed every year. This is a requirement of all good kennels.
Approximately 75% of all dogs over three years of age suffer from dental disease. Other than breaking teeth, the main dental problem is Periodontal disease, which is the growth of plaque and calculus from food build up. Dogs don’t brush their teeth! And some breeds, like Yorkshire terriers, have a genetic predisposition to periodontal disease.
Most small breed dogs need their teeth brushed regularly. Please contact us for further information. Our dental nurse will be happy to offer you further advice on dental hygiene and we run free dental hygiene clinics.
Please note, that for some large or giant breeds of dog, it is now recommended that neutering is performed once they have reached adult size. This is usually around 12 months of age or shortly thereafter.
If you do not intend breeding your dog, we recommend that all pets, male or female, be neutered.
Females: This procedure is called spaying and involves the removal of the ovaries and uterus. A female dog will have her first season between six and 12 months of age. Spaying before the dog’s first season will almost completely eliminate mammary tumours/breast cancers, prevent unwanted puppies, and avoid uterine/womb infections and cancers in later life. The dog’s personality does not change but we do give diet advice to prevent excessive weight gain afterwards.
Males: The main advantages to neutering a male dog are to prevent aggression, fighting, and wandering to find a mate. This procedure is called castration and is carried out between six to ten months of age.
Are there any adverse risks to neutering? A neutered animal requires fewer calories. Neutering, in conjunction with getting older, will mean they are more likely to put on weight. All animals need a correct combination of exercise and feeding to prevent obesity. Getting the correct balance should maintain their correct weight. Our nursing staff offer a free weight watchers clinic for our plumper patients.
Spayed females may be at a slight increased risk of developing urinary incontinence in adult life. This is an uncommon occurrence and usually can be easily managed with medications. Urinary incontinence is also seen in unneutered females.
Puppies can have worms from the age of two weeks. Your new pup should be wormed straight away. Worming should be performed every three weeks until your puppy is six months old and every three months after that as a minimum. Due to the presence of lungworm in County Galway, we now advise monthly worming for dogs deemed to be at risk. If very young children are in contact with your pup, we advise that you de-worm your pet each month. Worms like Toxocara canis can cause human blindness and liver disease, with children being the most susceptible. Although rare, it also is very preventable.
We recommend you use a good quality wormer as the cheaper alternatives are less reliable. Make sure you purchase your wormers from the veterinary surgery for this reason.