The Protective Power of Pet Vaccinations
With higher immunity, your pet is more capable of resisting infection. After puppies and kittens are weaned, they begin to lose the antibodies they received from their mother’s milk. This leaves them exposed to potentially life-threatening viruses. The Animalife Veterinary Center in Naples recommends vaccines to build up your pet’s immunity and increase production of antibodies, which are responsible for fighting diseases before they can harm the body. While pet vaccinations are not a complete solution to the spread of disease, they make a positive difference in your pet's life with the protection they offer.
What Vaccines Do We Recommend?
Our hospital carries every vaccine your pet could ever need to keep them healthy and safe. However, they are not likely to need all of the vaccines we have. Though pet vaccinations are certainly important, we do not want to over-vaccinate our patients.
The core (highly recommended) vaccines we offer for dogs and cats include:
The rabies virus is both highly contagious and deadly. Dogs and cats should both receive their rabies vaccine to virtually eliminate their risk of becoming infected. However, if your pet does come into contact with a bat, raccoon, coyote or fox, they should still see their veterinarian for a checkup.
Our distemper combination vaccine protects dogs against canine distemper, parvovirus, hepatitis, and parainfluenza. Canine distemper affects the gastrointestinal (GI), respiratory and nervous systems in puppies and dogs and is a contagious and life-threatening disease. In addition to dogs, foxes, coyotes, raccoons, skunks, and ferrets are known to carry canine distemper.
Feline distemper is different from canine distemper. The combination feline distemper vaccine we offer protects cats against feline herpesvirus 1, calicivirus, and feline panleukopenia. Also known as FP, feline panleukopenia is a viral disease that is a danger to kittens and attacks the bone marrow, intestines, and lymph nodes. Feline herpesvirus 1 is an upper respiratory infection of the nose and throat. Calicivirus is another respiratory disease that can affect the nasal passages, lungs, mouth, and intestines.
Depending on lifestyle risks, your pet may need other vaccines to protect them. This is why we take a customized approach to vaccines, making sure that our patients only receive what they need for a healthy life. Non-core vaccines we offer include Bordetella, Feline Leukemia, and Leptospirosis.
How Soon Should You Vaccinate?
Puppies and kittens should begin receiving their first pet vaccinations between 6-8 weeks of age. We often start with the canine distemper/feline distemper vaccine, giving a series of boosters until about 16 weeks, when we vaccinate for rabies. Depending on your pet’s health, they may receive their vaccinations at a different time. To discuss a vaccination timetable for your own pet, just give us a call at (239) 513-1777.