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Puppy Shot Schedule for Colorado Dogs

March 13th, 2017 by Cherished Companions Animal Clinic

This adorable Bernese Mountain puppy runs across the grass before heading to the vet for puppy shots.

So, you want to know the best puppy shot schedule for your Colorado pup…

Our Castle Rock veterinarians are happy to help!

We believe that most Colorado dogs don’t need every shot known to veterinary medicine.

That’s why we’ve put together a suggested puppy shot schedule for your pup.

It contains the most important vaccinations.

Keep in mind, these are guidelines.

When you visit our veterinarians, we’re happy to learn about your dog’s lifestyle, so we can tailor our recommendations just for you.

If you don’t live in the Castle Rock area, be sure to discuss your pup’s needs with your local veterinarian.

Important tip!

Be careful where you take your puppy until you’ve completed all shots. Puppies are can get really sick when they’re young.

Your pup isn’t fully protected until completing vaccinations.

Dakota, the siberian husky puppy, is still too young for puppy shots. He has an adoring friend!

First visit: 6-8 weeks old

Puppy shot schedule:

  • Distemper shot #1: This shot is officially known as DA2PP. It covers a variety of common puppy diseases, including canine distemper, parvovirus, adenovirus and parainfluenza.
  • Deworming #1: We give your dog a liquid treatment. It gets rid of any worms your pup may have picked up from its mama’s milk.

What you should know:

  • As soon as you get a puppy, come in for a checkup. Our vets will do a physical exam. We check for conditions you likely want to know about, such as:
    • Heart murmurs
    • Skin issues
    • Umbilical hernias
    • Limb deformities
  • Many breeders require a veterinary visit within a few days of getting your pup. Even if a visit isn’t required, have your puppy’s health checked early. That way, you can make educated decisions for your family before everyone becomes even more attached to your furry friend!
  • Our veterinarians do a physical exam before every vaccination. It helps ensure your dog is healthy enough to receive the shots.
 Come in for puppy shots!

We welcome new patients. Call our Castle Rock vets at 303-688-3757 or:

Book a visit here 

Second visit: 10-12 weeks old

Puppy shot schedule:

  • Distemper shot #2 (DA2PP)
  • Kennel cough vaccination: It’s officially known as the Bordetella vaccination. It’s optional. We highly recommend it for dogs that will be in contact with other dogs, such as on walks, at groomers, at daycare, etc. While the Bordetella vaccination protects against many strains of kennel cough, it doesn’t protect against all strains.
  • Deworming #2

We’ll likely start your dog on heartworm prevention too. It’s a tasty tablet to feed to your puppy. (Sometimes, we’ll suggest starting heartworm prevention after the first visit.)

What you should know:

  • Once you start your puppy shots, plan on visits every three to four weeks for two to three months. This is the puppy shot schedule the pharmaceutical companies recommend for their shots.
  • If you wait too long between visits, you may have to add on extra shots.
  • Our Castle Rock veterinarians are sometimes asked, if we give shots every two weeks, will we boost my puppy’s immunity faster? No, we don’t recommend faster timing. It takes a little while for the shots to take effect. For best results, we suggest following the puppy shot schedule from the companies that make them.

Cindy holds her new pup in her arms because he doesn't have all his vaccinations yet.

Third visit: 14-16 weeks old

Puppy shot schedule:

  • Distemper shot #3 (DA2PP)
  • Rabies shot: This vaccination is good for one year.

What you should know:

  • The rabies shot is required in Colorado. There are a few exceptions, but they typically don’t apply to young puppies.
  • We’ll give your dog its second rabies shot one year from now. After that, you change to a three-year shot schedule.

A happy Wheaten Terrier grins at the camera.

Optional fourth visit: 16-20 weeks old

Puppy shot schedule:

  • Leptospirosis shot #1: This shot is optional. We typically recommend it if your dog will be around water sources or places with rodent populations, including back yards and open spaces. Your dog needs two shots within three to four weeks of each other to be fully effective.
  • Parvovirus booster shot: Parvovirus is common around Castle Rock. Your puppy needs two parvovirus vaccinations when it’s 12 weeks or older. Your puppy may or may not need the booster. It depends on the timing of your DA2PP shots. We’re happy to review your dog’s vaccination record to determine whether a parvo booster is needed. 

This fluffy black puppy gives his humans big puppy eyes before heading to the veterinarian.

Puppy shots we typically DON’T give in Colorado

  • Canine Influenza shot: Camp Bow Wow — a local doggie daycare — requires it. In general, though, we don’t give it unless asked.
  • Lyme Disease shot: This is more common in the southeast United States than in Colorado.
  • Corona Virus shot: This is more common in neo-natal puppies in breeding facilities and shelters. By the time you adopt your pup, though, this risk is essentially over.

If your dog will be traveling outside Colorado with you, let’s talk about which additional shots may make sense!

Learn more about puppy shots

The American Kennel Club has a helpful article explaining puppy shots in more detail.

 Protect your pup!

For puppy vaccinations, call our Castle Rock vets at 303-688-3757 or:

Book your visit here 


Cherished Companions Animal Clinic is a veterinary clinic in Castle Rock, Colorado. Specializing in the care of cats and dogs, our goal is to help you and your pet feel more comfortable, keeping your stress to a minimum.

This article is intended to provide general guidance about a puppy shot schedule for Colorado dogs. If you have specific questions or concerns, please contact your local veterinarian. (If you live in or around Castle Rock, we welcome your call.)

© 2017, Cherished Companions Animal Clinic

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