Puppy Information

Elm Vets are committed to the best possible patient and client care. Please feel free to discuss any problems with the vet, or telephone for advice from one of our experienced reception/nursing staff.


Your puppy will need a course of 2 injections 4 weeks apart to protect him/her from the main infectious diseases of dogs:

  • Parvovirus
  • Canine Distemper
  • Infectious Hepatitis (adenovirus)
  • Leptospirosis

The second injection must be given when they are older than 10 weeks.

When can he/she go for a walk?

  • One week after the final injection Avoid waterways for a further 2 weeks to allow full protection against Leptospirosis.
  • Your dog then requires a yearly booster to keep the vaccinations up to date. 

Additional Vaccinations

These are not the core vaccinations, but can be given in addition if your pet is at risk of getting these conditions.
Kennel cough. This can be picked up anywhere that your dog is in contact with other dogs. 
Rabies Vaccination. This will be required if you intend to travel with your pet. Since Brexit travel has become much more complicated for pets, please discuss this with us before booking any holidays abroad with your pet.

Worming and Flea Treatment 

  • In most pets we recommend one of the two following combinations of treatment:
  • Bravecto flea and tick treatment + Milbemax wormer.
  • Advocate Flea treatment + milbemax wormer.
  • This gives excellent lungworm cover.
  • It does not cover ticks.
  • It should not be used if your dog swims a lot.
  • It only partially covers mites.

Puppies should be wormed monthly until they are 6 months old. At this stage the frequency of worming will depend on your household, your dogs diet and lifestyle, and if your dog scavenges. Please discuss this with us.


Spaying bitches prevents:

  • Unwanted pregnancies 
  • Womb infections, which can be fatal
  • Decreases the risk of breast cancer 
  • It is not necessary for a bitch to have a litter before she is spayed. If your bitch is not spayed, she will usually come into season between 6 and 12 months of age and every 6-7 months after that. We currently recommend spaying after her first season. 

Dog castration involves removing both testicles and prevents:

  • Some prostatic diseases 
  • Certain behavioural problems e.g. roaming and some types of aggression
  •  Neutered dogs are more prone to weight gain, so it is important that their diet is carefully controlled. In addition we advise against castrating a dog going through a ‘fear stage’ as this can make the behaviour worse not better. Once they have matured out of that stage we are fine to castrate. We usually recommend castration from 9 months onwards.


Your puppy should have been microchipped by the breeder before sale. If your puppy has not been microchipped please inform us. It is a legal responsibility of the owner/keeper to keep your contact details up to date on the microchip database. 


The easiest way to give your puppy a balanced diet is to feed him/her a proprietary puppy diet (large breed variety for large breed puppies). Initially your puppy will need four meals a day, reducing to three by about 12 weeks old. By 6 months of age, they can be on two meals a day. 

We do not recommend raw feeding for the following reasons:

  • Risk of poorly balanced diets – some raw diets have caused Rickets in puppies
  • Risk to your health – we cook our food to reduce this risk of food poisoning from Salmonella and Campylobacter. If our pups are eating raw meat then sneaking up and giving us a cheeky face/hand lick they can smear us in bacteria containing saliva.
  • Public Health England have expressed concerns about the risk raw feeding poses to human health.

Dental Care 

It is a good idea to start caring for your puppy's teeth when they are young. Regular tooth brushing can help to stop plaque forming on their teeth. The vet or nurse will be able to discuss how to accustom your puppy to this and other options which are available to care for your puppy's teeth. 


Your puppy's first 6 months of life are the best time to socialise him/her with different people, places and situations. It is essential to introduce your puppy to different types of people (men, women, children, elderly and disabled people) while they are young to give them confidence and prevent them becoming easily frightened/nervous. It is also helpful to practice ‘vet examinations’ at home - to get your puppy used to having his/her eyes, nose, teeth and paws examined/touched; this makes a trip to the vets much less stressful! If your puppy is long-haired then it is best to start grooming and brushing them as young as possible. If your puppy will be living with other pets, then it is a good idea to socialise them whilst they are young. 

Pet Insurance

Elm Vets strongly recommend that you consider insuring your pet. There are many different policies available. Check whether your policy provides ‘lifetime’ cover, so that if your dog develops a condition which will require treatment throughout its life, e.g. diabetes, the insurance company will continue to pay for the condition. 
Remember if you swap insurance companies any pre-existing conditions will not be covered, even minor things like ear infections.