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Some questions about puppies, vaccinations, socialisation etc

(21 Posts)
JulietBravoJuliet Mon 30-Jun-14 10:48:07

Pup is 9 weeks old, has had first vac and is due second next Monday. My vets told me to carry him round and allow him to meet as many vaccinated dogs as possible - fine, but when I asked them could a vaccinated dog still be a carrier of things like parvo, they said that yes they could, and it can also be carried on shoes etc.

I have an older dog who obviously runs around off lead, plays with dogs etc, so she could be exposed to all sorts and everything she is exposed to, surely pup will be exposed to as well? I understand why pup is not allowed to go on the floor in theory, but realistically, is he going to be at any more risk by being on the floor than he is meeting every dog that big dog meets and being fussed by everyone we meet?

I've had conflicting advice from several people - one old school vet that I know walks his pups from day one, as he says more dogs are pts from issues caused by behavioural problems than die from diseases, and he also believes that unless they are wrapped in cotton wool and kept indoors until 12 weeks, they will be exposed to everything their owner is anyway. My own vet says vaccinated dogs are fine to socialise with, but agrees they can also be carriers of diseases, and another vet I spoke to says she advises not taking pup out anywhere until 2 weeks after their second jab.

So what's the general consensus on here?

Lilcamper Mon 30-Jun-14 13:02:19

Pups have a certain amount of immunity from their mums up until about 14 weeks. The vet that says more dogs are PTS through behavioural issues than die of disease is correct.

Arudonto Mon 30-Jun-14 13:20:00

I always like to say its about risk.the chances of your dog or shoes carrying in parvo are quite low. However in outdoor areas where their are a lot of dogs the environment is much higher risk. dogs can also shed the virus before they get sick and its a virus that can lives in the environment for up to a popular dog walking spots are a hotspot for parvo...for example our local beach promenade seems to be a trigger point behind serveral of our cases lately.

Parvo is rampant where I am from(thanks to a certain rough estate) so I am very much pro carrying the pup around and only exposing to know dogs in safe contained areas(ie your own garden) to get socialisation.
Exposure to household noises and new people is quite easily done and very few puppies have got the hang of walking on a leash by 13 weeks anyway.

More dogs are PTS through behavioural issues then die of disease....but not all of these are due to socialisation issues....

So our new puppy (due to arrive mid July) can mix with vaccinated dogs? But not go to popular dog walking areas ... have I understood correctly?

JulietBravoJuliet Mon 30-Jun-14 20:55:59

It seems to depend which vet you speak to!

Arudonto Mon 30-Jun-14 21:15:10

la belle ..that would be what I would advise.known dogs with known temperament (ie tolerate puppies well) playing in areas where strange dogs have no access until the week after the second vaccination.otherwise the pup gets to cruise in someones arms to see new things.

affafantoosh Mon 30-Jun-14 22:33:37

This isn't about the vet "allowing" owners to do things - it's all about weighing up risks. In some areas the risks are perceived to be high (eg if there are a lot of parvo cases), in others they are low. The risk of not socialising a dog adequately is real though, and in my opinion overly strict veterinary advice to keep dogs in until they are 10/12 plus weeks of age has contributed to the spate of anxious, nervous dogs around.

We now know more about the importance of socialising and habituating puppies, not just that it needs to be done but that the timing is critical - after 14 weeks it is a much bigger and harder job, and in herding breeds it really has to be done sooner. I would agree with the above post that not all behavioural issues are due to poor socialisation, but well-socialised and habituated puppies develop into very resilient dogs who are better equipped to cope with the scary and confusing situations life throws at them, and are therefore less likely to suffer from anxiety, which can lead to aggression.

This is one to discuss with your vet in more detail. You are aiming to minimise the risk of contracting disease (small risk, high severity) while minimising the risk of behavioural issues due to inadequate socialisation (high risk, moderate severity). Vets can only really give you their opinion, which of course will vary. Without a crystal ball nobody can give you a rock solid answer on this one. Personally, not working in a particularly high risk area, I will suggest meeting fully vaccinated dogs in a safe space such as a garden, but will qualify this by explaining that it does carry some risk, just one that I perceive to be small. Research has suggested that puppies inadequately socialised with dogs will make up for this in later months much more successfully than those inadequately socialised with humans, suggesting that interspecies socialisation should be the main priority in the early stages anyway.

As far as meeting other dogs goes, it is so important to avoid bad experiences, so it is vital not just to casually introduce them to dogs but to carefully control the interactions and make sure you remove your puppy if they show any signs of being frightened or anxious.

JulietBravoJuliet Tue 01-Jul-14 10:21:22

The vet I have used for vaccinations is an inner city vet so I think they err on the side of caution as there's a problem with parvo in the city centre. The vet I spoke to that walks his pups from day 1 is the old guy in the village I live in, who says he's not known of a case of parvo around here for several years, so I guess the risk is much lower. I know most people in this village that have dogs, and all the ones I know are vaccinated, but there's always the chance that an "outside" dog could bring diseases in.

It's not an issue as I'm carrying him everywhere at the minute, but if was just curious as received three different views from three different vets!

Now, pup has his second vac next Monday - should I wait a week, two weeks or what before I let him down to play? He's a wriggly little bugger and is scratching me to bits carrying him!!

PivotPIVOT Tue 01-Jul-14 19:58:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JulietBravoJuliet Tue 01-Jul-14 20:24:45

3rd set of vacs? Mines only having 2 - is that a new thing?

It's frustrating isn't it? I want him to be as socialised as possible, as big dog wasn't socialised well enough as a pup (she was 12 weeks when I got her and it was another 4 weeks before I was allowed to take her out - vet at the time said not to let her leave the house until two weeks after the second vac) and consequently she's a bit grumpy with a lot of dogs and scared of her own shadow and of random men!

But presumably can met lots of people in dog-free zones ... going to invite lots of friends round and carry puppy to vaccinated dogs' houses ... In a very rural area, so I suppose less problem with parvo concentration

PeonyStick Wed 02-Jul-14 18:02:09

Similar issues .. 8 week okd lab , can't have first jabs until next week as he has got loose stools ... Vet says can't go out until a week after second set jabs .
I am going to take him to friends houses where I know their dogs are vaccinated to socialise and apart from that not a great deal - as carrying him isn't easy . He is big already , very wriggly and vet 'mouthy' nippy bugger

kelpeed Thu 03-Jul-14 00:10:10

i have just wandered around through the same confusing circles for my puppy's vaccination schedule.

vet said: ok for pup to walk around in public spaces after the second jab (12 weeks).

vet nurse (who worked for above vet) vehmenently said: definitely not ok for pup to walk around until 2 weeks after 2nd jab(ie at 14 weeks). the sky will fall in otherwise.

rspca manager: ok to walk around after 2nd jab, stressed importance of making the most of this critical socialisation period. also stressed that 95% of dogs they take in were due to lackof socialisation and training. THEN confused me by saying that is was best to avoid heavily dog populated areas (especially grassy areas) a couple of after the jab in case... quieter areas were ok.

various dog websites: all of the above. including specialised dog forums some of which said no way until after 3rd jab.(16 weeks). some owners also only had 2 jabs before the 12-14 month jab.

the clearest statement i saw from one vet group said after 12 weeks. in addition to my own vet's advice, i interpreted this statement as having the weight - they are putting themselves in a tricky legal position if it wasn't true.

my pup is now out and about in the world, although we are not going to popular dog-walking parks. Now i am more worried about worms...

and no talking about crocodiles puppies without sharing photoes. <sets example using the least blurry shot>

JulietBravoJuliet Thu 03-Jul-14 00:37:26

I've spoken to a different vet at my surgery today who said anytime after second vac is fine, which contradicts what her colleague said last week!

Here's my puppy picture smile

JulietBravoJuliet Thu 03-Jul-14 00:39:45

Oops didn't mean to make that a clicky link!! Didn't even know my phone could do that lol

Have another cute puppy picture to distract from my stupidity grin

PivotPIVOT Thu 03-Jul-14 06:16:59

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JulietBravoJuliet Thu 03-Jul-14 16:05:56

Look at him in his little harness smile

PeonyStick Thu 03-Jul-14 18:32:22

Gorgeous pics - they all look gorgeous in our virtual
Vipers puppy socialisation grin
PeonyPup just went crazy in the garden as next door is having a bonfire and flakes of ash are floating in the air - I wasn't sure if he was excited or anxious , but then he just fell fast asleep crazy dog

kelpeed Fri 04-Jul-14 09:25:26

all these viperpups are

TheFisherKing Fri 04-Jul-14 11:29:32

We are keen to get ours socialised and it's very frustrating not being able to take him out.

He'll be eight weeks on Monday so will receive first vaccination, then two weeks later at ten weeks he'll get his second one and then they said a week after that he can go out.

Ours was removed from the mother at six weeks so I am being very careful to ensure he is not at risk.

I took him in for a check up and he's doing brilliantly health wise but I don't want to take any chances.

We are missing the big RSPCA open day which is held yearly as it's the day before his first vaccination. It is a fantastic day out which every breed of dog imaginable going and the ideal place to meet other dogs and owners.

PeonyStick Mon 07-Jul-14 15:24:07

We have just got back from Yorkshire - and PeonyPup had a fab time at exDH ' a with his ancient lurcher . Seems he exhausted himself as he slept a lovely lie in this am !
Vet today for first jab .... 3 more weeks of house arrest ! Raining here +++ ....... we are all rather caged !

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