Jul 30
2012

Vaccinations – What are they? – rabies, leukemia, distemper

Vaccinations are a necessary part of the health of your cat.  Below you will find a list of the most commonly recommended vaccinations and the suggested time table.

Vaccine
(Click on name for more info)
Kittens
Start Age
# of Boosters
FVRCP 8-9 weeks 3 administered, 3 weeks apart, finished at 16-20 weeks. (Updated at 1 year, then every 3 years after that.)
FELV
(Feline Leukemia)
9-10 weeks Started when indicated. 2 administered, 3 weeks apart. Updated annually.
Rabies after 12 weeks Updated annually.
Combo Test at first visit Then annually, if indicated.

 

We do not recommend the following vaccines:

  • FIP
  • FIV
  • Giardia
  • Ringworm

Our vaccinations are tailored to fit each patient’s individual needs.  Dr. Ray closely follows the American Association of Feline Practitioner’s recommendations, and works hard to stay on top of recent developments in vaccination technology and safety.  Annual vaccinations are not necessarily appropriate for all cats.  We can discuss your cat’s lifestyle, and vaccinate appropriately and safely.  Vaccine titers are also available for any especially sensitive patients and for geriatric patients.  The titers will allow an objective assessment of the cat’s current level of immunity.  The booster series must be given 3-4 weeks apart for the immune system to respond and protect the kitten/cat.

FVRCP

This vaccine will protect against upper respiratory viruses (Rhinotracheitis, Panleukopenia, Calicci).

FELV (Feline Leukemia)

Feline Leukemia is an immunosuppressive virus that can be fatal in cats.  It can cause leukemia cancer, anemia, fevers, chronic infections, and other cancers.  It is spread through saliva, urine, and blood.  The virus is not very stable and therefore only survives for a few minutes outside of the host.

FELV vaccination is appropriate for any cat with the potential to meet other cats (largely meaning any cat with outdoor access.)  In an indoor-only lifestyle, this vaccine is not appropriate, because the cat is protected by its indoor status.

All cats should be tested for the FELV virus and never assumed to be negative for the virus. This is especially true for new cat adoptions, purchases and all new introductions to an existing population of cats.  Outdoor access cats should be retested annually prior to vaccination.

Rabies

This vaccine is the only one that is required by law.  If one of your cats bites someone and is not current on the rabies vaccine, the cat will be quarantined for at least 10 days.

The law requires vaccination of all pets because our wildlife in the state of Georgia is endemic for the Rabies virus.  Skunks, Racoons and Bats are the primary vectors in our area.  By state law, only a licensed veterinarian can administer the vaccination.  We are very happy to offer the PureVax, canary-pox vectored Rabies vaccine.  This vaccine is the safest cat rabies vaccine on the market.  The vaccine does need to be done annually to be kept current.