Keeping your pet current in his or her vaccines is very important to their overall health!
Vaccinations protect your pet from harmful diseases by exposing their body’s immune system to an inactive bacteria or virus. Part of your annual Wellness Exam will include a consultation during which the doctor will assess your pet’s health, and help you to determine which vaccines should be administered. Proper administration and timing are very important when it comes to your pet’s vaccine health.
Typically, healthy puppies and kittens begin their first round of vaccines between the ages of 6 and 8 weeks. During the next several weeks, boosters are administered, and the series are usually completed at around 16 weeks of age. Following this first round of vaccines, your pet will generally be due for their vaccines annually.
Your veterinarian will help determine exactly which vaccines are needed for your pet, but some of the most common include:
- Rabies – State Law requires that all dogs be current on their Rabies vaccines. The rabies virus is a very serious disease which can not only affect dogs, but which may also be transmitted to humans.
- Canine Distemper – The Canine Distemper virus is highly contagious, and can be fatal to dogs who are unprotected. It is particularly deadly to puppies. Protection against the Distemper virus is administered in the same vaccine as the Parvovirus.
- Parvovirus – The Parvovirus is another potentially deadly virus which can lead to acute gastrointestinal disease. Without aggressive treatment, dogs who have contracted the virus are at great risk, and death may occur despite therapy. Protection against the Parvovirus is administered in the same vaccine as the Distemper virus.
- Bordatella – Otherwise known as Kennel Cough, Bordatella is highly contagious among unprotected dogs, and affects the respiratory systems of those afflicted. Most boarding facilities require that dogs be current on their Bordatella vaccines. Some facilities require the vaccine to be current on a yearly basis, while others require that it be administered every 6 months.
Some other common vaccines you may want to discuss with your veterinarian include:
- Rabies – State Law requires that all cats be current on their Rabies vaccines. The rabies virus is a very serious disease which can not only affect cats, but which may also be transmitted to humans.
- Feline Rhinotracheitis & Feline Calcivirus – These two viruses are responsible for most respiratory diseases in cats. They are dually protected against with the administration of the FVRCP vaccine.
- Feline Leukemia – It is generally recommended that kittens receive 2 doses of the Feline Leukemia vaccine. After an initial vaccine, a booster is administered when the kitten is between the ages of 15 to 18 months. Additional protection is then determined by the veterinarian.
If you have any questions or concerns about your pet’s vaccines, our veterinarians and technicians would be happy to help you!