Custom Dog Vaccination Programs

Dog vaccinationWe’re here to help you ensure your dog’s health and well-being. We use and recommend certain vaccines to prevent and control infectious diseases that present dangers to your dog.

However, vaccinating every patient against every possible disease on an annual basis carries risks, is probably not needed and may be harmful to your pet. The veterinarians at Murrayhill Veterinary Hospital take the age and lifestyle of your dog into account when recommending vaccinations and work diligently to protect your dog from unnecessary vaccinations.

Although no age group can be considered entirely free from risk, puppies younger than 6 months are generally more susceptible to infection than adult dogs after exposure. Therefore, these young puppies are the target population for canine vaccination protocols. The following recommendations are simply guidelines; we will customize a vaccination program specifically for your dog. We constantly review scientific studies, expert opinions and vaccine technology to determine which vaccines and protocols are best for your pet. We are committed to giving as few vaccines as possible at any given visit. By splitting the vaccine antigens and using the only 3-year, USDA-approved vaccines on the market, we provide a safer, more personalized vaccine plan for your pet.

Biannual Exams

Regardless of the vaccines your dog may require, we recommend a physical exam every 6 months to evaluate your pet’s health. Remember: Dogs age faster than humans. Every year of your pet’s life is equivalent to 6 human years. During these regular checkups, your veterinarian can identify developing problems including dental disease, heart disease and other conditions that might not be apparent to you at home. With early detection, many of these diseases can be easily prevented and treated.

Vaccine Titers

We use vaccine titers to determine vaccine effectiveness in puppies. For pets with histories of allergies, we may recommend checking antibody/titer levels to make sure your dog is still protected against the most dangerous viruses. With a small blood sample that can be collected on the day of your pet’s exam, we can verify that your dog still has protective immunity to the vaccine viruses.

Vaccine Recommendations

DAPP (Distemper virus, Adenovirus or hepatitis, Parvovirus & Parainfluenza)

  • For a puppy under 16 weeks old: series of 3 vaccines, 4 weeks apart, then 1 vaccine every 3 years.
  • For adult dogs: vaccine or vaccine titer every 3 years to verify protection.


  • For puppies and dogs over 16 weeks we administer one dose followed by a booster one year later; then every three years thereafter


  • For puppies and dogs over 12 weeks we administer one dose followed by a booster two weeks later; then every  year thereafter

Bordetella (Kennel Cough)

We recommend this vaccine for all puppies and for adult dogs that are more social, especially dogs that stay in boarding facilities/kennels, visit dog parks and visit our grooming facility. The vaccination is given orally.

  • 1 oral dose at 8 weeks, then 1 booster every year.

Vaccine Reactions

Fortunately, vaccine reactions are rare in pets. Most dogs never experience adverse vaccine reactions, but please notify us right away if you notice any the following symptoms: facial swelling, hives, itching, sneezing, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, difficulty breathing, pain at the injection site, lethargy, collapse or seizures. Dogs will often be temporarily sore at the site of vaccination, but any pain or swelling should be reported and checked by your veterinarian.