Seasonal Care

Vaccination Recommendation for Social Dogs

Vaccination Recommendation for Social Dogs

- Ronald Schultz PhD, DACVM Honorary

In August 2016, experts in infectious disease, vaccinology, and veterinary medicine formed a consensus statement based on the needs of social pets and those that visit pet professional businesses, such as boarding kennels, groomers, training facilities, and doggie day cares.1 The results were key recommendations of best practices for pet businesses. The following has been agreed upon as appropriate guidelines for facilities seeking to ensure the highest standard of animal care and safety.

Vaccination is a medical decision made by a pet owner's veterinarian that should entail the same consideration and reasoning as other medical treatments. The American Animal Hospital Association and the World Small Animal Veterinary Association have created guidelines that recommend two categories of vaccines: core and non-core. Core vaccines are those vaccines that every dog should have. Core vaccines include rabies, canine distemper, parvovirus, and hepatitis (adenovirus). Non-core vaccines are those that are only recommended for dogs that are at risk or live in certain geographical areas. Non-core vaccines include canine parainfluenza, canine influenza (H3N8 and H3N2), Bordetella, leptospirosis, and Lyme (Borrelia burgdorferi).

Social dogs, including those that are boarded, groomed, group trained or group walked, are at more risk of infectious disease, especially respiratory diseases. Therefore, in addition to core vaccinations, social dogs should be vaccinated against infectious respiratory diseases including Bordetella, adenovirus type 2, parainfluenza virus, and both types of canine influenza virus (H3N2 and H3N8).

Leptospirosis is a very serious disease and should be of concern of all pet businesses since it can affect dogs and humans. Dogs that are at risk for leptospirosis should be vaccinated.2

For more information about vaccination recommendations, please review the American Animal Hospital Association Vaccine Guidelines:

  1. Kennel and Boarding Recommendations: Pet Business Consensus Statement 2016, AAHA Trends, February 2017.
  2. Sykes Jane E, Leptospirosis, World Small Animal Veterinary Association World Congress Proceedings 2014.