Important Reasons to Vaccinate Your Dog or Cat:

1) Immunizations can save your pet’s life. Because vaccinated animals are at minimal risk for catching a deadly disease, they live much longer and healthier lives and do not put other animals at risk for catching these illnesses. Examples of such diseases are rabies, canine distemper, parvovirus, feline distemper, and feline leukemia. Keep in mind that many diseases can be carried and transmitted by wildlife that our pets are likely to encounter when outdoors.

2) Vaccines are very safe and effective. The protection provided by many immunizations may last for many years, and most common side effects, such as pain at the injection site or lethargy for a day or two, are much less traumatic than the effects of the disease itself.

3) Immunizing your pet will save you time and money. Many preventable diseases result in prolonged hospitalization, time taken off work and higher veterinary bills. Some result in permanent ongoing problems or death. Vaccines will often either prevent a disease from occurring or temper the infection when your dog or cat is exposed so the symptoms are much milder.

You and your veterinarian should discuss you and your pets’ lifestyle to determine which immunizations are important for your pet. The American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) and the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) have released guidelines on vaccinating dogs and cats

4) Puppies and kittens receive a series of immunizations to protect them from deadly viruses administered every three to four weeks between the ages of 6 to 16 weeks.

Rabies is a core immunization in both dogs and cats. It is initially given at 16 weeks of age and then boosted one year later. Because rabies is a public-health hazard and is fatal to humans, there are laws dictating the frequency of rabies vaccination in Texas. Municipal or county rules may be stricter than state law so it is important to discuss this with your veterinarian.

Immunizations are vital to your pet’s health. Feel free to call our hospital anytime to determine the vaccinations that will keep your pet healthy.

Have an Amazing August!

Dr. Bonnie