What to Expect for Your Puppy's First Year

Bringing home a puppy is always an exciting time. You’ve got a cute and cuddly new family member who is just too irresistible to resist. Soon after you’ve introduced your new friend to everyone, it’s important to set up an appointment with a veterinarian in Etobicoke. Make sure to bring any health information that the shelter, breeder or seller provided you with, such as records of vaccinations. Also, bring a fresh stool, so the vet can test for the presence of intestinal parasitesPuppies in Toronto

What To Expect During Your Puppy’s First Exam

During a puppy exam, our Eotbicoke vet will weigh the puppy, check temperature, test for heartworms and check pulse.  In addition, a vet will listen to the heart and lungs and examine internal organs by palpating. Your puppy’s nose-to-tail exam will include an inspection of ears, eyes, teeth, gums and genitals.  Based on your puppies history and age,  we will discuss the series of vaccines required and vaccinate your puppy with core vaccinations, such as canine parovirus, canine distemper, bordetella  and rabies.

Our Etobicoke veterinarian will also recommend the routine administration of heartworm prevention  to protect your puppy from heartworm infection.

Most vets recommend spaying or neutering your puppy by six months of age. It’s particularly helpful to have your female puppy sterilized before her first heat cycle. The benefits of having this procedure done on your female puppy include prevention of cancer of the reproductive system, prevention of uterus infections, reduction in the chance of breast cancer and unwanted pregnancy.

Neutering a male puppy will prevent prostate cancer, testicular cancer and reduce roaming. Plus, a puppy exam will give you a good opportunity to learn about recommended nutrition, daily oral home care, and behaviour  for your pet’s optimal development and health.

Microchipping your Puppy at our Animal Hospital in Etobicoke

We also offer microchipping. Microchips are inserted under your puppy’s skin between the shoulder blades and contain a unique identification number. If your little puppy gets lost, the finder or shelter can have the chip scanned and provide the location of your cute companion. You’ll get a phone call from the lost pet service center.

Pet owners can also shop our online vet store for puppy collars, food, toys, grooming supplies, toothbrushes and toothpaste. As a matter of fact, we offer over 3000 pet products online. Even refill your pet’s prescriptions. Orders over $50 ship for free.

Toronto Dog Licensing 

Pet licensing is a Municipal Code in Toronto that requires all dogs and cats to be licensed and wearing a tag. Richview Animal Hospital would love to help you license your pet with the city of Toronto. Learn more about Toronto Pet Licensing.

Puppy Vaccination Schedules:

In their first year of life, puppies require a lot of care and attention. A series of vaccinations is given in the first year to help ensure a healthy beginning. At every vaccination appointment, a full physical examination is performed by the doctor to make sure that your puppy is growing and developing properly.

  • 8 wk - Full Examination + distemper, adenovirus, parainfluenza & parvovirus
  • 12 wk - Full Examination + distemper, adenovirus, parainfluenza, parvovirus, bordetella & leptosporsis for high risk pets
  • 16 wk - Full Examination + distemper, adenovirus, parainfluenza, parvovirus & rabies (1yr vaccine) & leptosporsis for high risk pets
  • 1 yr - Full Examination + distemper, adenovirus, parainfluenza, parvovirus & rabies (3yr vaccine) & leptosporsis for high risk pets

The protection provided by the vaccine will gradually decrease over time. This is why your pet will need boosters at regular intervals.

Spay or Neuter Surgery for Dogs

At Richview Animal Hospital, we emphasize the importance of sterilization surgery. This simple procedure will not only to help reduce over population but can also improve the overall health and well-being of your dog. We recommend spaying or neutering your dog before the six month mark. Learn more about why it is important to Spay/Neuter.

Why do Puppies Require Boosters?

A puppy that is nursing will receive maternal antibodies passed through its mother's milk. These maternal antibodies will protect the puppy from disease during its first few months, gradually declining in efficacy over time. These maternal antibodies will interfere with any vaccinations given and make them ineffective. Puppies need to be given a series of boosters within their first 4 months of life to gradually stimulate the production of the puppy's own antibodies while minimizing the interference of its maternal antibodies.

How Do Vaccines Work?

Vaccines work by preventing infection and decreasing the physical symptoms of disease. Vaccines contain altered viruses or bacteria (these altered states don't cause disease). At the time of vaccination, your pet's body will produce antibodies in response to the introduction of these altered viruses. These antibodies will destroy any disease causing viruses or bacteria that are subsequently exposed to your pet.

Why Do Puppies Need Vaccines?

The instinctual social behavior in dogs increases their exposure to other animals. This, in turn, increases the risk of disease. Many diseases that dogs can get from other dogs are serious. Some are fatal or can seriously jeopardize good health. Fortunately, there are vaccines made available that can greatly decrease the risk of contracting disease. The best way to treat disease is to prevent it altogether. Along with a full physical exam, vaccinating your pet is an effective way of preventing disease and illness.

Time for a puppy exam? Give us a call at Richview Animal Hospital by dialing 416-245-8805 to set up an appointment. We look forward to meeting your little companion!

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