Is Your Pet Protected? What to Know about Vaccines and Your Pet

Most dog and cat owners know their pets need rabies vaccines. The majority of states require vaccination against this potentially fatal disease. But did you know that for best health, your pet needs several core vaccines and may benefit from optional ones as well? Even more important, did you know that once vaccinated, your pet may still need periodic boosters?

In humans, vaccines help the body build up resistance to certain illnesses. Vaccines in pets work the same way.

Essential Vaccines for Your Pet

For dogs, the core vaccines help prevent:

-Rabies: a contagious and fatal viral disease that is transmitted through saliva, from infected mammal to other mammals.

-Distemper: a highly contagious, often fatal viral disease that affects the respiratory, gastrointestinal and central nervous system in dogs.

-Canine parvovirus: a highly contagious, life-threatening viral disease that affects the dog’s intestinal tract and can also damage the heart muscle.

-Canine adenovirus: causes canine hepatitis, an acute liver infection that can be spread among canines.

For cats, core vaccines help prevent:

-Rabies: a contagious and fatal viral disease that is transmitted through saliva, from infected mammal to other mammals.

-Feline distemper (panleukopenia): very contagious, life-threatening disease that is spread among cats, affecting the digestive tract.

-Feline viral rhinotracheitis: an upper respiratory that is very contagious among cats, and can cause pneumonia.

Optional Vaccines for Your Dog or Cat

In addition to the core vaccines that can help decrease the chance of your pet developing a life-threatening or fatal illness, other vaccines may be useful, depending on your dog or cat’s lifestyle. For example, if you board your dog frequently, you might consider a vaccine to guard against kennel cough or canine influenza, contagious respiratory illnesses. If your cat likes to wander outside, she may need a chlamydophila vaccine to protect against pneumonia or the feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) vaccine, to protect against a disease that weakens a cat’s immune system.

How to Continue to Protect Your Pet

Although vaccines can lower your pet’s risk of getting a serious illness, that protection doesn’t last a lifetime. Your dog or cat will likely need a booster every one to three years.

Make sure your pet gets the protection needed to protect these serious illnesses. Talk with your vet to get and keep your dog or cat on a vaccination schedule that will keep them healthy for a lifetime.

Have questions? At Dogwood Veterinary Hospital & Pet Resort in Chapel Hill, we are a full0-service veterinary facility and pet resort, AAHA accredited in 2009. We can provide the answers and quality service you and your pet deserve. Give us a call at 919-942-6330 or email us at info@dogwoodvethospital.com.

By |2015-10-12T15:53:09-04:00October 12th, 2015|Seasonal News|