Vaccinations are the safest and most effective way to protect our pets from harmful diseases. A vaccination is a simple injection given by the veterinarian after performing a physical examination. The examination allows the vet to detect any problems or potential issues and address any concerns before they become a health problem to reduce the chance of your pet’s quality and length of life being affected.
Puppies should be vaccinated at 6, 10 and 12 weeks of age, and adult dogs should be vaccinated yearly. Common diseases in dogs that we vaccinate against are Distemper, Herpesvirus, Parvovirus, Parainfluenza and Bordatella.
Kittens should be vaccinated at 6, 12 and 14 weeks of age, and adult cats should be vaccinated yearly. Common diseases in cats that we vaccinate against are rhinotracheitis, feline calicivirus, panleucopenia virus and FIV (feline immunodeficiency virus).
WHICH OTHER DISEASES SHOULD YOUR DOG BE VACCINATED AGAINST?
Canine parvovirus can affect dogs of any age, but is most serious in puppies and older dogs. It targets the intestines, causing blood-stained diarrhea, vomiting and severe abdominal pain. Even with intensive veterinary care, dogs can still often die from severe dehydration. Direct contact with other dogs is not needed for the disease to be spread. The virus is very persistent, therefore an infected dog’s environment must be cleaned with a strong disinfectant to prevent it spreading to other dogs.
Canine distemper is a highly contagious viral disease that affects dogs of all ages, however puppies are at the greatest risk. Symptoms of canine distemper can vary, but can commonly include coughing, fever, vomiting, sneezing, nasal discharge, loss of appetite, diarrhea and depression. Fits, muscle tremor and paralysis can occur later in the disease.
Canine hepatitis is also a viral disease and, like distemper, is highly contagious and often fatal. It can affect dogs of any age, however severe cases are rare in dogs of two years of age or older. Symptoms of canine hepatitis can include vomiting, high fever, loss of appetite, depression, diarrhea and acute abdominal pain. Death can occur within 24 to 36 hours in severe cases. Dogs that recover can develop long-term kidney and liver problems, and can continue to carry and spread the disease for many months after they recover.
Canine cough is produced by several highly infectious diseases, and is easily spread in places where dogs congregate, such as parks, obedience schools, shows and boarding kennels. Dogs that are affected with canine cough can have a dry hacking cough which can persist for several weeks and is very distressing for the dogs. Infection can also lead to pneumonia.