How Often Do Dogs Need Rabies Shots

You wouldn’t want your dog to contract the rabies virus because of how detrimental it is not just to the dog but to you as the human friend. This guide will show you all you need to know about the rabies vaccine and how often your dogs need their rabies shots. 

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What Shots Do My Dogs Need?

After birth, your dogs need a series of vaccinations that will keep them healthy and prevent them from contracting diseases from the environment. Majorly there are two categories of vaccinations that your dogs need;

Core puppy vaccines

Noncore dog and puppy vaccines

#1. Core Puppy Vaccines

These are medications that are considered essential so that your puppies can stay healthy. This vaccine is commonly called DAP or DHP. Core vaccines are required for all dogs and puppies at 8, 10 and 12 weeks of age. These medicines include:

  • The rabies vaccine is required by law.
  • Adenovirus vaccine to prevent canine hepatitis.
  • Canine distemper vaccine to avoid diseases of the respiratory, nervous, and gastrointestinal (GI) systems.
  • The parvovirus vaccine protects puppies against viruses that attack the GI system.

#2. Non-core Dog and Puppy Vaccines

Non-core puppy vaccinations are optional vaccines that are recommended by vets based on your puppy’s level of risk and factors such as age, activities, and geographic location.

These vaccinations include parainfluenza and canine influenza.

These medicines include:

  • Lyme vaccine to prevent Lyme disease.  
  • Bordetella vaccine to prevent the bacterial infection Bordetella.  
  • Parainfluenza and canine influenza vaccines prevents catching or spreading other forms of kennel cough. 
  • Leptospirosis vaccine to prevent the bacterial infections lepto. 

What Is The Schedule For Puppy Vaccination?

The scheduling for your puppy vaccinations is determined by your dogs vet after determining your puppy’s risk of exposure to illnesses that are not included in any of the vaccines the dog took. 

From research, here is what the schedule of your dogs vaccination shots for rabies or other vaccines;

At 6-8 Weeks

  • Core vaccines: DAP
  • Non-core vaccines: bordetella; parainfluenza

At 10-12 Weeks

  • Core vaccines: DAP
  • Non-core vaccines: leptospirosis; lyme; canine influenza

At 14-16 Weeks

  • Core vaccines: DAP; rabies (if not given earlier)
  • Non-core vaccines: leptospirosis; lyme; canine influenza

What Is Rabies Vaccine For Dogs?

Rabies vaccines for dogs is a vaccination required by law especially in the USA  for all dogs to prevent them from contracting the rabies virus. 

Why Does My Dog Need Rabies Shots?

Dogs need the rabies shots to build immunity against the rabies virus and how to respond to the virus if it attacks the system.

When Should I Vaccinate My Dogs The Rabies Shots?

All dogs should be vaccinated for rabies at approximately 14 weeks of age, and then again at one year of age.

When Should I Revaccinate My Dogs Rabies Shots?

When you should Revaccinate your dogs for rabies shots will depend on the rabies regulation in your place or country of residence. Depending on your local regulations, re-vaccination should happen every one to three years after the first vaccination.

Revaccination of the rabies vaccine is important because over time, the effectiveness of the vaccine starts to wear off, and if your dog is to stay protected, you have to revaccinate them.

How Long Does a Rabies Shot Last?

How long a rabies shit lasts depends on two factors state law and the medical recommendation. Some states require you to Revaccinate your dog for rabies after 1 year of the vaccination other states allow for 3 years. Because state laws vary there is no standard duration for how long a dog’s rabies shot lasts.

However, medically, rabies vaccines are labeled as being effective for 1-3 years.

Can a Vaccinated Dog Get Rabies?

Although the rabies vaccine is 100% effective records have shown that some vaccinated dogs contracted the rabies virus even while they’re vaccinated. So chances are that your dog even if it is vaccinated with the rabies vaccine can get the rabies virus. This does not mean that the rabies vaccine is ineffective rather it is a possibility.

Are There Any Side Effects Of The Rabies Vaccine?

Dogs may show the following symptoms within hours of the vaccination; 

  • Slight fever
  • Mild discomfort 
  • Decreased appetite 
  • Decreased activity level. 
  • Swelling at the vaccination site.

If these symptoms worsen, contact your veterinarian. But here are the common side effects of rabies vaccination:

  • Hives
  • Vomiting or diarrhea
  • Swelling of the muzzle and around the face, neck, or eyes
  • Severe coughing or difficulty breathing, and even collapse 

What Is The Cost Of Dogs Rabies Shots?

There is no standard cost of a rabies vaccine because the cost will depend on the provider and your country of residence. However, the average cost of dogs’ rabies vaccine shots is between $30 and $50. 


The rabies vaccine is meant to prevent your dog from the rabies virus. This person is required by law in most states of the USA. It’s ideal for you to get a rabies shot for your dog to prevent them from contracting the rabies virus which is detrimental to their health and yours as well.


  • – Dog and Puppy Vaccinations Timeline: When to Get What Shots
  • – Does My Dog Need a Rabies Vaccine Every Year?
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