Dogs & Puppies: Man's Best Friend Deserves the Best


Dogs and puppies are man's best friend and your choice in size and variety is virtually endless. When you come in for your new puppy's first wellness visit, you will receive our Puppy Kit–puppy food, pet products, and other items just for puppy owners. This gift to you is our way of welcoming your newest member of the family to our family of professionals from Knoxville Veterinary Clinic.

The Puppy Kit includes a fecal collection container, in which you will bring a stool sample for an intestinal parasite test. This is especially important for your young pet, so that treatment and preventives can be started immediately. Dogs of every age are susceptible to disease from intestinal parasites, but puppies, seniors, and dogs with compromised immune systems are particularly vulnerable.

While every pet is different, we have prepared a basic checklist for the care of your young pet. This helps you understand our system of graduated wellness care for your puppy, beginning when your new pet first arrives and ending with protection from disease for a full year.

Puppy Wellness Care Checklist

At 6 weeks of age

  • Vaccinate for distemper, adenovirus, parainfluenza, corona, and parvovirus (abbreviated DA2P/P/C)
  • Deworming against roundworms and hookworms with Strongid T
  • Discuss flea and tick preventive (use vet-approved products only)

At 8 weeks of age

  • Vaccinate again for DA2P/P/C
  • Vaccinate for leptospirosis
  • Second deworming with Strongid T
  • Stool sample tested for intestinal parasites
  • Start heartworm preventive, usually with Heartgaurd

At 12 weeks of age

  • Vaccinate again for DA2P/P/C
  • Vaccinate for leptospirosis
  • Vaccinate for bordetella
  • Continue heartworm preventive monthly, year-round
  • Schedule spay or neuter appointment

At 16 weeks of age

  • Vaccinate again for DA2P/P/C
  • Vaccinate for bordetella
  • Vaccinate for rabies
  • Spay or neuter surgery

After the puppy year, your adult dog will require annual visits to insure ongoing protection from major diseases and parasites, as well as professional examination and general veterinary care.

At your annual visits, discuss general canine care and medical concerns with your veterinarian. Meanwhile, the following tips will help you focus on the basics:

  • Pet-proof your home to provide a safe environment for your dog.
  • Obtain only vet-approved products such as play toys, dog bed, and chew aids.
  • Use high–quality food for the proper stage in your dog's life–never feed human food!
  • Always leave fresh, clean water for your dog.
  • Groom your dog regularly for healthy skin and coat.
  • Follow a home dental care regime.
  • Provide your dog with plenty of exercise and a safe outdoor elimination area.
  • Play with your dog every day for socializing and to enhance the human–animal bond

For more on pet dental care and services, visit our Pet Dental Care page. For an in-depth discussion of vaccines and the diseases they prevent, visit our Vaccinations page. And when your dog reaches those special senior years, visit our Senior Pet Care page for information, tips, and resources.

For a comprehensive and informative look at canine care and enjoyment, visit the AAHA's website for dog lovers. The WebMD Dog Health Center offers information about puppy care, behavioral training, canine wellness, and more.