Blog Social Dog Guide to Vaccines

While there are 2 core vaccines that we highly recommend for all dogs, we often see dogs that are more socially-inclined.    You know these dogs:  they’re the ones you see taking their pet parents for a walk in your neighborhood … at dog parks … at doggy day care … at boarding facilities … at the local pet groomer … shopping inside pet stores … even dogs at veterinary clinics.   These are the dogs that are, well, “social”.  They are around other dogs, and even though they may not necessarily be in direct contact with other dogs, they are often in close enough contact that the more highly contagious diseases may put other pets at risk of infection.

The 2 vaccines that all dogs should have are:

  1. Rabies, which is required by law, and
  2. Distemper-Parvo, which protects against several diseases, including 2 forms of kennel cough.

But most dogs, at some point, will be in close (or even direct) contact with other dogs.  And for those dogs, there are 2 other vaccines that we strongly recommend.

  1. Bordetella, which protects against one form of “kennel cough” (as mentioned above, the Distemper-Parvo vaccine protects against 2 forms of kennel cough, and there are still several other viruses and bacteria that are responsible for kennel cough)
  2. Canine Influenza Virus (CIV, or ‘Canine Flu’)

Because it is fairly common and highly contagious, Bordetella is typically required for those dogs attending doggy day care and staying in boarding facilities.  Many pet groomers will require each dog to receive a Bordetella vaccine before entering their facility.

Canine Flu can be a life-threatening disease in dogs.  There are 2 different variations of Canine Flu, and our vaccine protects against both kinds.  Some kennels require it for dogs that are either boarding or attending day care.

Nobody knows the social nature of your dog better than you, but if in doubt, I recommend taking all necessary precautions to protect your dog.   Should you have additional questions, please contact us at or 704.288.8620 (Mon – Fri, 8am – 5pm).