Every owner wants their dog to stay as healthy as possible. Dog vaccinations are an important part of making sure your pet doesn’t contract a number of potentially fatal diseases and conditions. 

Vaccines generally contain minute doses of the virus or bacterium that cause a particular disease giving the dog protection against it. If your dog then comes in to contact with the disease their immune system is strong enough not to contract it.

Dog vaccination schedule 

The first dog vaccinations usually take place when puppies are 8 weeks and then two to four weeks later at 10-12 weeks. They can be started as early as 6 weeks in some cases.

It’s always best to ask your vet when the best time is to vaccinate. To support you with your vaccinations, download our Dog Vaccination Schedule.

After these initial vaccinations dogs may need boosters as the body’s immunity fades. They may be every year or once every few years.

Routine dog vaccinations 
  • Canine parvovirus
  • Canine distemper virus
  • Leptospirosis
  • Infectious canine hepatitis.

Dogs may also have the canine parainfluenza vaccine and the kennel cough vaccine.
Dogs travelling abroad may need a rabies vaccination.


What does each dog vaccination prevent?
Canine parovirus (CPV) is a highly contagious viral illness. Its symptoms are bloody diarrhoea, vomiting and weight loss or in its cardiac form the wasting away of the heart muscles in puppies which can often lead to death.
Canine distemper is a viral illness that’s highly contagious between dogs. It has no known cure, and often proves fatal. Its symptoms are a high temperature, red eyes, discharge from the nose and eyes, weight loss, vomiting, diarrhoea, and the hardening of the pads of the paws.
Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection that if contracted in susceptible puppies can lead to major organ failure and fatality. Mainly in the UK, the bacteria is picked up from rat and fox urine. There are many symptoms including thirst, jaundice and bloody diarrhoea.
Infectious canine hepatitis is a potentially fatal condition that can affect all dogs. It can also affect and be spread by foxes. The condition affects the liver, kidneys and other organs. In mild cases it can resolve itself and, go away on its own as the body develops the necessary antibodies to fight off the virus.
Kennel cough used to be very common across the UK. It’s very easily spread and symptoms are a strong and persistent cough. It causes pain and inflammation to the dog and can lead to more serious complications like pneumonia. It can be serious in dogs with an underlying illness.

Generally though, the condition can be resolved within a few weeks, and most dogs make a full recovery from kennel cough.

Canine parainfluenza is also known as race flu or Greyhound disease. It’s also one of the component factors that make up kennel cough.

It’s not one of the main conditions dogs are always vaccinated against, so you may have to ask your vet to vaccinate your dog to prevent this.

Kennel cough occurs when canine parainfluenza, which is a viral condition, combines with a bacterial infection called Bordatella bronchoseptica, which is again, highly contagious.

Most dog vaccinations are injections. The kennel cough vaccine is usually a nasal spray.

Rarely some dogs and puppies may have a bad reaction to vaccinations. Your dog or puppy should always be in good health when vaccinated.

A few may develop a rash around the injection site or may feel a little lethargic for a couple of days following the injection.

Dog vaccination costs 

The cost of dog vaccinations varies depending on where you live and which vet you go to. A rough guide is approximately £20 for the first set of puppy’s injections and £20 for the second set.

The kennel cough vaccine is done separately and is about the same price £20. Booster injections cost between £20 and £40 pounds depending once again, on where you go.

The RSPCA does give help for people in financial need. You can find out from the charity whether or not you can get subsidised dog vaccinations at one of their clinics.

The first jabs your puppy will require are Canine parvovirus, Canine distemper virus, Leptospirosis and Infectious
canine hepatitis at 8 weeks old and then the rest at 10–12 weeks old. After their first set of jabs, your dog will need
to be given a booster every year thereafter to keep up protection against diseases.

Download our Dog Vaccination tracker to monitor your dog’s vaccinations.