Vaccination has revolutionised control of infectious disease in our pets. It is essential that all pets are adequately vaccination to help protect the pet population as a whole. Responsible pet care requires kittens to be given their initial course of vaccinations, but this cannont protect them for the rest of their lives. Adult cats require regular vaccination to maintain immunity agaisnt disease.
Kittens are 'temporaily' protected against many diseases by antibodies received through their mother's milk. These maternal antibodies decline in the first couple of months of their lives, however until they drop sufficiently they can also neutralise vaccines. This is why a series of vaccinations is necessary for a kitten.
Adult Cat Vaccinations
The immunity from kitten vaccinations weakens over time and your pet can again become susceptible to disease. Annual health checks and booster vaccinations will provide the best protection for the life of your pet.
A Guide To Cat Vaccinations
Initial vaccination programs should provide at least two vaccinations 3 - 4 weeks apart against some or all of the following: feline panleucopenia, calicivirus, rhinotracheitis, chlamydia and leukaemia virus at or after eight weeks of age. Three vaccinations, 2 - 4 weeks apart, against feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) are recommended at or after eight weeks of age.
After Vaccination Care
Following vaccination your cat may be off-colour for a day or two, or have some slight swelling or tenderness at the injection site. Access to food and water and a comfortable area to rest are usually all that is required for a quick recovery. However, if the response seems more severe, you should contact us for advice.
Infectious Diseases That We Vaccinate Agaisnt
Feline Enteritis (also known as Feline Panleucopenia)
It is very contagious and the death rate is high, especially under 12 months of age. Pregnant cats may lose their young or give bith to ktitens with abnormalities, quite often with brain damage. Symptoms are depression, loss of appetite, uncomfortable vomiting and diarrhoea, often with blood and severe abdominal pain.
The virus spreads so easily that heavily contaminated areas may need cleaning with a special disinfectant. Cats that do recover may continue to carry the virus for some time and infect other cats.
Feline Respiratory Disease (Cat Flu)
It is caused in 90% of cases by feline herpesvirus (feline rhinotracheitis) and/or feline calicivirus.
Feline respiratory disease affects cats of all ages, especially young kittens, Siamese and Burmese cats. It is highly contagious and causes sneezing, coughing, running eyes, nasal discharge, loss of appetite and tongue ulcers.
fortunately, the death rate is low except in young kittens, but the disease is distressing and may persist for several weeks. Recovered cats can continue to carry and spread the infection for long periods, and can show signs of the disease again if they become stressed.
Chlamydia (also known as Chlamydophila)
Feline chlamydia causes a severe persistent conjunctivitys in up to 30% fo cats.
Kittens are more severely affected by chlamydia when also infected with "Cat flu", and chlamydia can be shed for many months. Vaccination agaisnt cat flu and chlamydia helps protect against clinical disease.
Please given us a call to discuss a suitable vaccination regime for your kitten or cat.