Why ​​​​​​​are Pet Vaccinations Important

Regardless of what illness you have, being unwell isn’t a pleasant experience. The symptoms of viruses, infections and other health problems can be painful and debilitating and often the worse the underlying illness, the worse the symptoms can be. As humans we have the fortune to be able to vaccinate ourselves against some of the most serious diseases. Thankfully, thanks to advancements in veterinary medicine, it is now possible to extend this benefit to our household animals, and today, pet vaccinations are more affordable and accessible than ever before.

Understanding the importance of vaccines

One of the largest problem with germs is just how quickly they can spread. There are four major types of germ: bacteria, viruses, fungi and protozoa and all of these can invade your pet’s body and make him sick. Unfortunately, animals don’t have the hygiene habits of human beings which make them significantly more likely to come into contact with these germs, which they can then spread themselves through contact, bodily fluids etc.

Vaccinations are used to help prevent the spread of some of these serious and potentially life-threatening illnesses amongst the pet (and sometimes human) population. They work by helping to prepare your pet’s immune system to fight the invasion of disease-causing organisms, such as bacteria or viruses. This is because the vaccine contains antigens which masquerade as the disease-causing organism, but don’t actually cause any harm. However, your pet’s immune system will still kick into action, albeit mildly, and will store the memory of this so that it is ready to fight off the real disease if required.

It is important to understand that while some vaccines may completely protect the animal they have been administered to, others will only reduce the severity with which the illness attacks.

Key benefits of vaccinating your pet

- Helping your pet to live a healthy, happy life

- Help control the spread of serious viral and bacterial disease in your local area and further afield

- Protecting your pet from diseases from which there is no current treatment

- Reduce the risk of complications associated with symptoms of disease

- Less stressful visits to our veterinarian

- Fewer veterinary bills

What vaccinations does my pet need?

There are a wide variety of different vaccines now available, and which are right for your pet will depend on what type of animal you have and their age. Our veterinarian will be able to work with you to establish a robust vaccination program so that you can rest assured that your pet gets the protection necessary to live a long and healthy life. You must ensure that you stick to the schedule as recommended, and that your pet attends all booster vaccination appointments, which will keep him protected at all times.

Most varieties of pets have some core vaccinations that are recommended to them.

For dogs this includes:

- Parvovirus

- Distemper

- Adenovirus

- Parainfluenza

- Leptospirosis

For cats this includes:

- Feline herpes virus

- Feline infectious enteritis

- Feline calcivirus

- Feline chlamydophilosis

Vaccination regulations

Some States have specific regulations to follow regarding pet vaccinations. For example, Washington State specify that all dogs, cats and ferrets must be vaccinated against rabies, and proof must be shown to the county animal control office. Many pet shelters and boarding kennels also like to see proof that the animals they take into their care are up to date with their vaccinations which helps them to ensure that their facility is as clean and disease-free as possible.

If you want to know more about the vaccination requirements where you live, contact our city or county animal control office or local health department.

If you have further questions about vaccinating your pet, our veterinarian will be delighted to advise you further. Contact and make an appointment today to ensure your pet gets the protection he needs as soon as possible.