Just as children get vaccines to stay healthy and help protect them from diseases, so do dogs and cats. Our furry friends are susceptible to a whole slew of unpleasant or dangerous infections, and one way to help prevent unwanted illnesses is by vaccinating your pet.
You might be wondering, “What vaccines does my pet need?” Below we will discuss several vaccinations that could potentially spare you and your pet from facing the effects of various sicknesses.
Rabies vaccines for dogs are vitally important, as this disease is life-threatening. According to American Humane, many states require this vaccination. However, even if your dog has received a rabies vaccine, be sure to still clean out any bite wounds and have them examined by a vet, as the vaccination is not always a 100% guarantee or safeguard against the disease for every pet.
WebMD refers to distemper as a core dog vaccine that should be given to every pet dog, as distemper can lead to brain damage. Usually, puppies are given three shots between six and 16 weeks old, and adult dogs are initially given two shots, three to four weeks apart. According to WebMD, adult dogs need a booster every three years.
Parvo can be fatal to animals, and it can also cause bloody diarrhea and vomiting. Protecting your precious pup from parvo is important for health maintenance. Similar to the Distemper vaccine, puppies are usually given three shots between six and 16 weeks old, and adult dogs are initially give two shots, three to four weeks apart. Boosters are needed.
The bordetella virus is also known as kennel cough. If you plan on boarding your dog anytime soon, the bordetella vaccination can help protect your dog from this upper respiratory infection. This vaccine also comes in handy for show dogs, as well as dogs who go to the park, groomer or any kind of doggy daycare facility, according to American Humane.
Lyme disease can occur in South Carolina, and this particular bacterial infection spreads through ticks. Vaccinations for Lyme disease can be given to puppies and adult dogs, and shots may be needed once a year before tick season starts, according to WebMD.
Just like dogs, cats are also susceptible to rabies and need to be protected from it. This disease can be fatal to felines, and most states also require that pet cats have a rabies vaccination, according to American Humane.
Feline Distemper (Panleukopenia)
Most often, feline distemper affects young kittens, and this contagious disease can lead to death. The first distemper vaccination can be given at six weeks, and then every three to four weeks after that until week 16, according to WebMD. Once a cat reaches 16 weeks, he is given two initial doses three to four weeks apart, which are followed by boosters.
Feline Leukemia Virus
This vaccination is not recommended to all cats, but many times, it is suggested for cats that spend a great deal of time outdoors. The Feline Leukemia Virus, also known as FelV, can cause cancer, and it is spread through close contact with other cats. The earliest a cat can be given this vaccination is at eight weeks of age.
Dogs are not the only pets susceptible to bordetella. Cats who spend time at the groomer or a boarding facility are also at risk for contracting this upper respiratory infection. Bordetella vaccinations are typically given annually after four weeks of age.
According to WebMD, Calicivirus can lead to joint pain, oral ulcerations, fever and anorexia. You can start vaccinating your cat for this disease at six weeks, and then every three to four weeks until week 16. After week 16, two doses are initially given three to four weeks apart, followed by one dose a year later, and one every three years after that.
By no means is this an exhaustive list of vaccines that are recommended for your pet. Each pet is unique with its own individual needs and situations, and your vet is the best-suited person to help you navigate which vaccines are most appropriate for your furry friend.
Thanks for stopping by. We hope you learned something new about vaccinating your pet, and we encourage you to share this article so others can learn about protecting their pets from diseases and infections.