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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We are getting our GSD puppy in January at around 8wks old. I want to start him in puppy classes and I want everyone's opinion here. Is it safe at 8wks old to bring your puppy around other puppies? Obviously I will ask for proof that all other dogs are fully vaccinated. Also, are GSDs more prone to getting Parvo than other breeds?

Thanks
 

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All dogs are equally able to get Parvo, but I'm sure the healthier the pups are and their mom was, the better their immune system.

Most puppies start puppy class a bit later than 8 weeks so you may be a bit further along in their vet visits and shot schedule.

That said, my Glory B was in classes the week I got her and that was around 9 or 10 weeks. I had no qualms about starting that young with her. The facility is clean and well run. I also have found that those people that choose to spend the time, and then money to find and start puppy classes also seem to be those who are RESPONSIBLE with their puppies and where they go.

So I hang out with people with healthy puppies and dogs in puppy classes. As well as with my friends/neighbors that I know are responsible with their pups/dogs. It's so vital to socialize and socialize EARLY that I choose the slight chance of my dog getting sick over the HUGE chance of getting temperment issues down the road from lack of socialization they need.

Common sense is key with this. And if you meet someone with a dog/pup you are not sure of, just step in and prevent interaction. You don't have to make a big deal about THEIR dog, heck, you can 'lie' and say you think YOUR pup is sick and you don't want to affect their dog! See, helpful and considerate :)
 

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I've taught puppy classes that allows puppies starting at 8 weeks old and never had an issue. What you should understand about Parvo is that it is everywhere and it is a very hardy virus. Puppies get parvo through feces to mouth contact and only through that. The reason it is so scary is that it requires very little virus to make a young puppy sick. Your puppy doesn't need to be exposed to other puppies to be exposed to parvo, he or you just need to walk some where were parvo infected feces had been. Most general cleaners/disinfectants don't kill parvo and it can live a very long time outdoors, long after infected feces have been removed.

An indoor training facility is probably less risky than most public areas because generally at indoor training facilities, any potty accidents are quickly cleaned and the area disinfected. So more important than the vaccine status of the other puppies is the cleanliness of the facility. Before my puppy classes, I used to mop the whole building with a parvocide disinfectant. I generally avoid pet stores until puppies have had at least 2 shots for this reason (or I carry them). Those big stores where people are coming and going are generally do not have their floors disinfected regularly and there are often things puppies want to eat laying around.
 

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It's my understanding not to take any puppy out that has only one shot done. I've heard that after the 2nd shot they are 50% protected and after the 3rd shot they are 90% protected.

I don't get mine out until they've had at least the 3rd shot, it's not worth the risk. There's a thread on here now with a baby that has parvo and she had some shots (not sure how many). For me it's worth waiting a few weeks.
 

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It's my understanding not to take any puppy out that has only one shot done. I've heard that after the 2nd shot they are 50% protected and after the 3rd shot they are 90% protected.

I don't get mine out until they've had at least the 3rd shot, it's not worth the risk. There's a thread on here now with a baby that has parvo and she had some shots (not sure how many). For me it's worth waiting a few weeks.
I agree 100%. Once you've had a pup that contracted parvo, you never want to go through it again. Not only is it very costly to treat, it is heart wretching to watch your pup that ill. It only takes one contact.
 

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Our rescue dog, Kona, ended up getting Parvo. She came to us with it, but didn't show symptoms until 4 days after we got her. Kona had already had 2 sets of vaccinations. We took Kona out to many places during those first 3 days when she didn't seem sick and I still feel terrible that we could have unknowingly contaminated someone else's puppy. We got lucky, as she had great medical care and survived and is a normal, healthy dog, but she was very sick and it was a terrifying ordeal for her and our family.

Our new little guy, Thor, is not going out to many public places until has had all his puppy vaccinations. As far as socialization, he has been introduced to many of our family and friends' dogs and gets to explore our neighborhood, go for rides in the car, etc. Thor will start puppy classes at 12 weeks old and in the meantime we are working with him 2-3 times a day on the basics. I think if the obedience facility you are going to is clean and well-kept, you should be fine, but you just have to be aware that there is always a risk. I think I am overly cautious having lived through Kona's illness and not wanting to ever go through that again.
 

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The training club I belong to allows pups to start at 8 wks, but they do require proof of vaccinations so I imagine it's safe. That being said, my vet recommended keeping my pups from coming in contact with other dogs until fully protected at 12 wks. He didn't even want pups to walk on the floor of his office until then and definitely no trips to pet stores, dog parks, etc. So if you feel the place is safe, it's your decision.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
great thanks. So how many vet visits are needed between 8wks-12wks? The puppy is being picked up with one vaccination. When does the 2nd parvo get administered?

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Socialization is VERY important and the most important window is 8-16 weeks so if you wait til 12 weeks and the 3rd shot you are still in that window and will be ok. Of course it's important to socialize beyond that but that is a critical window.
 
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