The Core Vaccines Your Pet Needs
When it comes to disease and illness, one of the best ways to protect your pet is through prevention. As with humans, your pet’s routine vaccines are a crucial way to help your pet stay healthy from their puppy/kitten years into adulthood.
Here are the core vaccines your pet really needs — your veterinarian will help determine which additional “lifestyle” vaccines are recommended, based on your location and lifestyle.
Rabies is a deadly disease caused by a virus that attacks the nervous system. The virus is secreted in saliva and is usually transmitted to people and animals by a bite from an infected animal, such as a rodent.
The Rabies vaccine should be administered no earlier than 12 weeks of age. The vaccine is boostered after 1 year and then again every 3 years.
The DA2PP vaccine guards against:
Canine Distemper - nervous system virus
Canine Adenovirus 1 - canine hepatitis
Canine Adenovirus 2 - respiratory disease
Canine Parainfluenza - highly contagious respiratory virus
Canine Parvovirus - highly contagious gastrointestinal virus
Bordetella is a bacteria associated with Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex, the highly contagious disease known as “Kennel Cough.” Dogs commonly contract CIRDC at animal shelters, grooming salons, doggy daycare, dog parks & boarding facilities where many pets are sharing space. Read more on the Bordetella vaccine here.
Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease that can cause serious illness in both dogs and humans, often from exposure to the bacteria in rivers, lakes, or streams or contact with rodents. Read more on the Leptospirosis vaccine here.
Lyme disease is caused by infection with the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi, transmitted to humans and animals through the bite of infected black-legged ticks, such as deer ticks. After contracting Lyme disease, dogs can develop a fever, lameness in their joints, sluggishness, and swollen lymph nodes.
Canine Influenza Vaccine
Canine influenza is a highly contagious viral infection affecting dogs and cats. Two strains of canine influenza virus have been identified in the U.S.: H3N8 and H3N2. Canine influenza is transmitted through respiratory secretions from coughing, barking, and sneezing and can cause a cough, runny nose, fever, sluggishness, inappetence, and eye discharge (though some pets will be symptomless). Dogs who spend time at kennels, groomers, daycare facilities, and shelters are at increased risk of infection.
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Rabies is a deadly disease caused by a virus that attacks the nervous system. The virus is secreted in saliva and is usually transmitted to people and animals by a bite from an infected animal, such as a rodent. Rabies starts with flu-like symptoms and then progresses to cerebral dysfunction, confusion, agitation and anxiety.
The FVRCP vaccine is a core vaccine that guards against the following:
Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis Virus - respiratory virus
Feline Calicivirus - upper respiratory and oral virus
Feline Panleukopenia Virus - highly infectious and contagious virus that attacks multiple body systems
Even if your cat spends their time primarily indoors, it’s still beneficial to vaccinate them. These viruses can cause sneezing, coughing, runny nose, conjunctivitis, corneal ulcers, and fever, and can progress to pneumonia and in rare cases, death.
Feline leukemia virus (FeLV) is one of the most infectious diseases of cats worldwide. Affected cats can develop anemia, cancers, and/or suppression of the immune system. The disease worsens over time and is usually fatal.
It can be transmitted via bite wounds, deep scratches, sharing food & water bowls and sharing a litter box, so prevention is essential.
In conclusion, vaccines — especially core ones — are an imperative aspect of primary care. Stay on track with regular wellness visits, and if your pet is due for a vaccine, book a visit below.