Preventative Health Checklist for Dogs
Part of the Dogs For Dummies Cheat Sheet
Be pro-active to prevent illness and injury and keep your dog healthy and happy. Use the list below as a guide for care at each stage of your dog's life. Also, talk with your vet about what is best for you and your pet.
Puppy veterinary care
Initial exam within 48 hours of adoption.
Four to five combination vaccinations at three-week intervals, starting at the age of 6 to 8 weeks. Rabies vaccination at 16 weeks.
Wormings as prescribed by your veterinarian, at two- to three-week intervals or until the fecal test comes up clear.
Heartworm preventive. No heartworm test required if puppy’s mother was on preventive and puppy is started by the age of 12 weeks.
Follow-up exam at time of final vaccinations to spot congenital problems, retained baby teeth, and so on.
Spaying or neutering, as early as 8 weeks, as recommended by your veterinarian.
Adult veterinary care
Annual examination, which may include periodic chemistry prolife and urinalysis, especially for older pets and prior to procedures requiring anesthesia.
Combination vaccination, annually. Rabies vaccination, once every three years or as required by law.
Dental cleaning and scaling under anesthesia, annually or as recommended by your veterinarian.
Adult home care
Heartworm preventive, daily or monthly
Nail trim, weekly
Regular bathing and grooming
Home exam, including checking for lumps and bumps, weekly
Tooth-brushing, two to three times a week
Regular flea-control program