In France, dog vaccination is compulsory in certain cases only, but it is strongly recommended for all dogs. Let’s take stock of the value of having your dog vaccinated even if it is optional, what are the legal obligations in this area in our territory, the penalties provided for in the event of non-compliance with the regulations in force, and see if vaccines can be reimbursed by an animal health mutual.
Why and at what age should your dog be vaccinated?
Vaccination helps protect the health of your dog against many diseases of parasitic, viral or even bacterial origin. It’s here most effective prevention solution and it is better to ensure that the vaccination record of your canine is up to date because these pathologies are extremely serious since most of them are fatal. Moreover, given their strong contagiousness between animals but also towards humans, dog vaccination is a matter of public health.
The earlier the dog is vaccinated, the better since it benefits from a optimum protection. It is therefore possible to have him vaccinated from the age of 2 months for certain vaccines and from 3 months for the rabies vaccine. At this period of life, the maternal antibodies which protected him since his birth have already significantly diminished. Also, to prevent the puppy from being too exposed to the risks of certain pathologies, it is necessary to opt for a solution which takes over from these antibodies, and which is none other than the vaccine.
However, it is never too late to vaccinate a dog and even if it is old, it should be able to benefit from this protection until the end of its life. Aging has a considerable impact on the animal’s immune system, which then becomes much more vulnerable in terms of health, hence the interest of having your old doggie vaccinated as well.
What vaccines can a dog benefit from?
There are different vaccines that the veterinarian can administer to a canine in order to protect it against the following pathologies:
- Diseases of parasitic origin: Lyme disease, piroplasmosis, leishmaniasis,
- Diseases of viral origin: rabies, parvovirus, Rubarth’s hepatitis, distemper,
- Diseases of bacterial origin: leptospirosis, infectious tracheobronchitis commonly known as kennel cough …
Be careful, in some cases, it is not enough to have your dog vaccinated once for him to be perfectly protected. Its protection can only be maintained if the animal also benefits from vaccination reminders except of course in the case where a single vaccine protects for life. All owners must therefore refer to the veterinarian and ensure that everything is recorded in their dog’s health record.
Regarding reminders, you should know that the animal first receives a primary vaccination but for him to remain immune to the target disease, he must receive a booster within a given time. The maximum time between the primary vaccination and the booster varies from 1 year to 3 years depending on the type of vaccine. It is therefore absolutely fundamental to refer to the vaccination schedule established by the veterinarian on a case-by-case basis.
Note that a week before having your dog vaccinated, it is useful to deworm because if his digestive system is infested with parasites, the vaccine will be less effective.
What are the cases which fall under the obligation of vaccination in dogs?
In France, there are four situations which are covered by this obligation, namely:
Travel to a foreign country
Any dog from the age of 12 weeks, regardless of breed or sex, must obligatorily be vaccinated against rage above all exit from national territory (intra and extra EU).
Dog boarding stays
If you decide to entrust the care of your dog to a structure such as a kennel or an animal shelter, whether for a short or a long period, you must be able to justify that the animal has received the vaccines. following:
- Against the rage,
- Against the kennel disease or infectious tracheobronchitis,
- Against the parvovirus.
The production of the animal’s health record is therefore required at the time of its registration in this type of establishment or, failing that, a certificate issued by the veterinarian.
The change of owner
The law requires that any dog that is the subject of a sale, transfer or donation must be vaccinated against rage but also identified by transponder (electronic chip). Be careful therefore to check whether the animal is vaccinated when it is imported, if it comes from a French department officially declared ” infected with rabies Or if you buy a dog at a fair, in a market or through a classifieds site. Better to go to a breeder or a breed club.
Group 1 and Group 2 dogs
Sheepdogs and Bouviers (Group 1) as well as Pinscher, Schnauzer and Molossoids (Group 2) are covered by the legislation in force in terms of compulsory vaccination against rabies. A single vaccine is enough for the animal to be protected for life. There is therefore no reminder to be expected.
We do not joke with the obligation to vaccinate his animal. The non-compliance with the law exposes the offender (owner of the dog) to 15,000 fine and 2 years imprisonment.
Are vaccines reimbursed by mutual health insurance for dogs?
Many expenses are covered by animal health insurance once the owner of the animal has taken out a contract. But you must also have chosen the right formula, namely the one that allows you to be reimbursed, partially or totally, for compulsory but also optional vaccines. Reimbursement is then made as soon as the vaccination is carried out by a veterinarian, and on production of a copy of the dog’s health record or any document provided by the practitioner.
To receive several quotes for dog health insurance, it is useful to use a comparator online. This tool is free and without obligation. The interested party can quickly receive different offers and after having scrutinized them, he just has to choose the one that best meets the needs of his dog. By opting for a formula without waiting period, his dog will be covered as soon as the contract is signed. He can therefore be vaccinated quickly and at a lower cost for his owner.