Bordetella isn't a core canine vaccine, like rabies or distemper. However, if your new puppy is frequently in contact with new dogs, getting him vaccinated against Bordetella bronchiseptica is a good idea. That's because the vaccine protects him against kennel cough, an extremely infectious disease. If you board your puppy, a kennel will require that he's up-to-date on his Bordetella vaccination.
Unlike other puppy shots, the Bordetella vaccine most often is given intranasally. While the vaccine can't guarantee 100 percent protection against kennel cough, it usually lessens the effects if your puppy is infected. He should receive his vaccine at least a week before going into puppy day care or a boarding kennel. Most dogs receive an annual vaccination. If your puppy's lifestyle includes frequent boarding, dog shows or similar activities in which he's exposed to strange canines, he might require a twice-yearly immunization.
Side effects of the Bordetella vaccine are relatively mild. Your puppy might experience coughing or sneezing for a few hours after the vaccine is administered. That's generally a reaction to the intranasal administration.
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