What to Expect At Your First Puppy Wellness Appointment

Congratulations on your new puppy! At Martindale Animal Clinic our puppy wellness program is designed to offer your new puppy all the benefits of veterinary services available to him or her. At each puppy vaccine appointment, the veterinarian will perform a complete physical exam, administer the necessary vaccines, and address any questions or concerns you may have regarding your puppy.

During your visits we will examine your puppy and discuss many topics including diet, vaccinations, house training, obedience training, and the right time to spay/neuter your puppy.

At the appropriate ages your puppy will be receive the following vaccines:

Distemper is a widespread and often fatal disease which can cause vomiting, diarrhea, pneumonia and neurological problems.

Parvovirus a highly contagious and potentially fatal disease which may cause severe vomiting and bloody diarrhea. It is especially dangerous in young dogs, but all unvaccinated dogs are at risk of contracting this severe disease.

Hepatitis is an adenovirus disease which may lead to severe damage of the liver, kidneys, spleen, and lungs.

Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection that may lead to permanent kidney and liver damage. Leptospirosis can be transmitted to humans. The bacteria is spread through contact with infected urine or contaminated soil or water. The bacteria comes from the urine of wild animals.

Rabies is a fatal infection of the central nervous system. The virus is transmitted through the bite of an infected animal. Rabies vaccination is required by law due to human health risk.

Bordetella aka Canine cough is a highly contagious respiratory disease that causes cold or flu like symptoms. Canine cough can be transmitted by casual contact such as sniffing each other when on a walk, playing, or sharing water dishes. Bordetella vaccination is usually mandatory at boarding facilities. It is a recommended to give your dog the Bordetella vaccine if your dog goes to regular grooming, dog park, boarding facilities, or in general comes in contact with a lot of dogs.

Since your puppy will come in contact with a lot of other dogs during the first year through socialization, puppy classes, and doggie daycare, the Bordetella vaccine is a core vaccine in our puppy vaccine protocol.

Lyme Disease is transmitted through ticks and it infects both humans and dogs. This disease can damage joints, causing fever and lameness. A small portion of dogs can develop a fatal kidney disease. The Lyme Disease vaccine is given to puppies if their lifestyle dictates they are at risk.


Fecal Parasite Screen

When you call to book an appointment for your puppy you will be asked to bring a fecal sample to test for intestinal parasites. Fecal parasites screens should be done at least once a year for your dog and several times a year for puppies. We look at your pets stool sample under the microscope. We are searching for parasite eggs including Roundworms, Hookworms, Tapeworms, and Whipworms. We are also examining for protozoan parasites (single celled organisms) such as Coccidia and Giardia. Dog can get these parasites from the ground (dirt/grass/sidewalks) where they walk, having fleas, hunting, drinking from outdoor water sources, or contact with the stool of other animals. Puppies can become infected with Roundworms and Hookworms from their mom before they are even born or via nursing. Did you know many pets with intestinal parasites do not show any outward symptoms?  Parasites affect their health in less-obvious ways including poor growth, poor haircoat, weakened immune system, and some can infect people. If the stool sample tests positive appropriate deworming medication will be prescribed.


Heartworm, Tick, Flea and Intestinal Parasite Prevention

Preventative care for heartworm disease, fleas, and ticks will be also be discussed at your appointment. Lyme disease, Anaplasma and Ehrlichia are types of bacteria transmitted by ticks that can affect your dog’s blood cells, internal organs, and immune system. Most common signs for these are lameness, fever, lack of energy, loss of appetite, vomiting, and diarrhea.  Heartworm is transmitted by mosquitos. They are long worms that live in the blood vessels surrounding the heart. Many dogs with heartworm disease show no symptoms until it is too late and heart disease develops. Heartworm prevention is given monthly from June to November, but flea and tick season can be much longer depending on the weather.  Fleas will survive indoors and on other animals during the winter, and ticks are active if it is 4 oC or warmer. Intestinal parasite eggs can be present in the soil year-round.

There are a wide range of preventative products available, most are administered once per month either orally or topically. We will help you choose the best product for your puppy based on their lifestyle and your preferences.

Don’t delay your puppy’s first visit to the vet.  Addressing potential health problems for your puppy now will make their transition into your family less stressful and healthier for all of you! Call us today (905) 682- 5551 or click here to book an appointment for your puppy.


Please see a digital copy of our Puppy Care booklet. We will have a copy waiting for you at your first appointment! Click here to download the Puppy Care booklet.