When should the first check-up for the little puppy be done?

New pets should be examined for the first time on the 4th or 5th day after they enter the household. This allows them to get used to their new home, and it allows the new owner to observe them for any potential problems. Of course, if any issues are discovered, they should consult a veterinarian immediately. If your pet has a passport or other document with vaccinations marked, bring it along so we can assess which health program is best for your puppy. It’s also a good idea to bring a stool sample for examination for intestinal parasites.

Why are vaccines necessary?

Puppies are vaccinated to stimulate their immune system to produce antibodies that protect them from diseases. Although puppies receive some antibodies from their mother’s milk, their effect is temporary. Several vaccinations are necessary for your puppy to develop adequate immunity to protect them from diseases.

When does the health program begin?

Ideally, care for the puppies begins as early as when they are with their mother, around 3 to 4 weeks of age. The puppies should be tested for intestinal parasites and dewormed if necessary. Vaccinations and check-ups should start around the 45th day and should be repeated at 2-3 week intervals until 3-4 months of age. During this period, it is desirable to perform several tests for intestinal parasites.

What vaccines will my puppy receive?

The vaccination program for your pet depends on its age, previous vaccines, and specific care requirements. Here are some of the main diseases against which vaccines are available:

Canine Distemper: A highly contagious viral disease that is almost always fatal.

  • Canine Hepatitis (Adenovirus): Viral disease that is almost eradicated. It causes respiratory and liver problems.
  • Canine Parainfluenza: Respiratory infection, often a component of kennel cough.
  • Canine Parvovirus: Severe gastrointestinal infection characterized by vomiting and bloody diarrhea. It can be fatal and highly contagious.
  • Rabies: Your puppy should be vaccinated against rabies at around 3-4 months of age. This disease is invariably fatal and poses a risk to human health. Bulgarian law requires all domestic dogs to be annually vaccinated against rabies.
  • Leptospirosis: Bacterial infection that can cause permanent kidney damage. For hunting breeds, revaccination every 6 months is recommended.
  • Less commonly, vaccines against Bordetella, Lyme disease, and coronavirus are administered.

Why are intestinal parasites dangerous?

There are different types of parasites – roundworms (worms), flatworms (tapeworms), single-celled parasites (isosporae, etc.). Many puppies are infested with these parasites, but they can easily be removed if detected early. Parasites cause diarrhea, anemia, delayed growth, and even death (in more severe cases with serious infestation). Some parasites can also be dangerous to humans (especially children).

What should I feed my puppy?

It is very important to feed growing puppies high-quality food tailored to their breed and age. Some breeds have specific dietary requirements, such as brachycephalic breeds, for example (consult with a veterinarian). Avoid table scraps as they can cause digestive problems, and your puppy may become accustomed to them (getting used to a normal diet may be difficult). Every animal should have continuous access to fresh water.

Should I neuter my pet?

Neutered animals live longer due to the avoidance of several sex-related diseases. If you don’t intend to breed your female dog (in 90% of cases), we recommend early neutering, around six months of age. Generally, your dog will have a more relaxed demeanor, and you’ll encounter fewer medical issues if you have them neutered. Also, as a responsible pet owner, you won’t contribute to the problem of stray animals on the streets, many of which are euthanized. Statistics show that the most common victims of car accidents are unneutered dogs, as they are more prone to wandering.

By visiting your veterinarian, you’ve already taken the first step toward ensuring a better life for your pet. Routine check-ups, annual vaccinations, regular external and internal parasite control, and high-quality food are things you can do to have a healthy pet at home. Prevention is much easier and much cheaper than treatment!

Enjoy your new pet and friend. They don’t need much, but they gift you with so much positive energy! If you have any concerns or questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to us!