Pet Vaccines for Healthy Cats & Dogs Your cat or dog is a member of your family, and you want to make sure that they are getting everything they need. One of their biggest needs is proper veterinary care, and in particular, routine vaccines that prevent against common diseases and infections. Keeping up with your vaccines is a good way to keep your pets healthy and free of discomfort and ailments.
Cats and dogs are susceptible to different types of diseases. Vaccines help your cat or dog develop necessary immunities to many life-threatening infections. The most commonly recommended vaccines are:
As a pet owner, you don’t have to understand the complex science behind vaccine antigens, but you should know what type of vaccines your cat or dog needs and how often they need them. Talk to your vet and set up a plan for a vaccination routine. She’ll be able to tell you what core vaccines your pet absolutely needs and what noncore vaccines are a good idea, too, based on your pet’s breed and age.
One thing pet owners may not realize is that where they live and their pet’s lifestyle may play a big role on what diseases their pets encounter. Your veterinarian may recommend additional vaccinations against diseases like feline leukemia, Lyme or even canine influenza if your pet’s geography and regular routines put them at risk. Outbreaks of some diseases can spread quickly throughout the animal populations. When that happens, it’s a good idea to reach out to your vet and find out if your pet is at risk and if a vaccination can help. Keep an eye out in your local newspaper for articles about animal-health issues. Your local humane society may also post bulletins of disease outbreaks in the area.
Many vaccines require injections given at different intervals or boosters to keep immunities active. Think about making your next appointment before you leave the vet’s office. Mark your calendar and set alarms on your computer and cell phone. These are appointments you don’t want to miss.Recently, in the realm of veterinary science, there has been a great debate about when and how often pets should be vaccinated. The answer is that it varies from pet to pet and vaccination to vaccination. One thing you can do have your pet take a blood test, called a titer, to check the level of antibodies present. This will tell your vet whether your pet needs a booster.
Besides that famous Husky on YouTube who woofs a perfect “I love you,” most of our pets have yet to verbalize how they feel. That makes it difficult to know if they’re healthy and comfortable. Be wary of any changes in your pet’s behavior: lethargy, stiffness, fever, loss of appetite, etc. These could be early signs of infection and are good reasons to make a visit to your vet’s clinic. Routine vaccines do an amazing job of keeping pets free of preventable ailments. And remember, the sooner you catch an infection, the stronger chance your pet has of recovering with the least amount of discomfort and long-term health consequences.
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