A Pet Owner's Guide to Vaccines
At Bartram Park Animal Hospital in Jacksonville, your pet’s health and safety is our number one priority. It is important to us that pet owners understand how to best take care of their pets. One of the most common things we hear from pet owners is why their pet needs to be vaccinated. We know that knowledge is power and believe that it’s important for pet owners to understand exactly why pets need vaccines. The following pet owner’s guide to pet vaccines will tell you everything you need to know about pet vaccines.
The Purpose of Pet Vaccines
When your pet receives a vaccination, it triggers the immune system to produce antibodies to that specific disease. If your pet happens to contract the disease that it has been vaccinated against, the illness will not be fatal to him or her.
When to Vaccinate Your Pet
Your pet is more likely to develop some immunity if you keep up with the recommended vaccination schedule. The most critical time for vaccinations is the first few months of life because puppies and kittens haven't yet developed a strong immune system, and they are very susceptible to disease. Veterinary professionals typically recommend a series of vaccines every three to four weeks, with the last set occurring around four months of age. After the initial set of vaccines, you’ll need boosters every few years. Since the frequency may vary for each pet, it’s important to discuss your pet’s specific recommended vaccination schedule with your veterinarian.
Importance of Vaccinations
Some pet owners are concerned about potential dangers of vaccinations, but the benefits outweigh any potential problems. Side effects are usually mild and short-lasting and serious side effects are extremely rare. Your pet will be more open to contracting potentially fatal diseases, if not vaccinated. Pets that haven’t been vaccinated can also pass diseases along to other pets or even to humans. In most states, it’s mandatory that your pet receive a core set of vaccinations. It’s not just the responsible thing to do, it’s the law.
Types of Vaccines Available
Our veterinarian can help you find the right vaccines for your pet. Certain vaccines are given based on your pet’s lifestyle. Your pet may receive the following types of vaccines:
Core Vaccines for Dogs: Rabies, canine hepatitis, parvovirus, and distemper
Non-Core Vaccines for Dogs: Leptospira bacteria, Bordetella bronchiseptica, and Borrelia burgdorfer
Core Vaccines for Cats: Feline distemper, rhinotracheitis, rabies, and feline calicivirus
Non-Core Vaccines for Cats: Feline immunodeficiency, Bordetella, Chlamydophila felis, and feline leukemia virus
Your Jacksonville Veterinary Specialists
Whether your pet is due for vaccines or needs other veterinary services, Bartram Park Animal Hospital in Jacksonville can help! Contact us at 904-495-7941 today to schedule your appointment.