Vaccination recommendations for dogs


Like people, dogs require regular and proper vaccinations to protect them from infection and disease. A tailored vaccination program acts as the first line of defense in ideal health and wellness.

Each animal is unique, with individual needs. Your ZippiVet dog veterinarian will develop an optimal schedule of vaccinations just for your dog, taking into account the American Veterinary Medical Association’s (AVMA) general guidelines.

The following vaccines protect against common serious and fatal illnesses and are considered core for dogs:

  • Rabies: Your dog should have an initial rabies vaccination by 16 weeks of age. There are two forms of this vaccination: 1-year and 3-year. For both forms, a booster should be issued within a year of the first shot. Thereafter, a regular schedule (of 1 or 3 years) should be followed for boosters.
  • Distemper, Parvovirus and Adenovirus: Between your dog’s 6th and 16th week, three doses of each of these vaccines should be given. Every year, puppies should receive a booster, while adult dogs require boosters at least every 3 years.

The following vaccines protect against less common, less fatal diseases and are considered non-core:

  • Parainfluenza and Canine Influenza: These dog flu vaccines are administered by your puppy’s 8th week of life, followed by yearly boosters.
  • Bordetella: Vaccines for this vary. Your veterinarian can advise you about the need for an initial dose and 6-month or annual boosters.
  • Lyme Disease: Two initial doses should be administered before your puppy is 9 weeks old, with potential annual boosters at the beginning of every tick season.
  • Leptospirosis: Around your dog’s 12th week, two doses, separated by a few weeks, will be administered. This is followed by annual boosters if your dog is in a high-risk area.

Vaccination recommendations for cats


Like people, cats require a proper schedule of regular vaccinations to act as a defense against infections and diseases. Your cat has individual, unique needs. However, there are general guidelines published by the American Veterinary Medicine Association (AVMA) that your ZippiVet cat veterinarian will use to work out a perfect course of vaccination.

The following vaccinations defend against common and often fatal diseases and are considered core for cats:

  • Rabies: Your kitten will receive a rabies vaccination by 8 weeks of age. This is followed by boosters either annually or every 3 years, depending on whether the course is a 1 or 3 year version of the vaccine.
  • Feline Distemper, Herpesvirus and Calicivirus: Kittens can receive these vaccines around 6 weeks of age, followed by a series of doses every few weeks until they reach 16 weeks of age. A booster is administered 1 year later, then additional boosters every 3 years. Distemper is very contagious and kittens are particularly vulnerable.

The following vaccines protect against illnesses that are not as common or deadly, and are considered non-core for cats:

  • Feline Leukemia and Bordetella: These vaccines can be administered during your cat’s 8th week of life, followed by an additional dose within 4 weeks of the first. After this, annual boosters will maintain protection.
  • FIV: This vaccine protects against feline AIDS, but the benefits may be offset by the drawbacks. It may not protect against certain strains, and cats who receive this vaccine may test positive for the virus. You should discuss this vaccine carefully with your veterinarian before scheduling it for your cat.