Some cat owners are hesitant to vaccinate their cats, but we feel that getting cats vaccinated is gravely important. Our Turlock vets provide insights and advice on why it’s important to have your cat vaccinated even if they are indoors.
Many feline-specific diseases affect many cats every year. To protect your feline friend from contracting a preventable condition, it’s critical to have them vaccinated. It’s equally imperative to follow up your kitten’s first vaccinations with regular booster shots during their lifetime, even if you expect your cat to be an indoor cat.
The booster shots “boost” your cat’s protection against a variety of feline diseases after the effects of the initial vaccine wear off. There are booster shots for different vaccines given on specific schedules. Your vet can provide advice on when you should bring your cat back for more booster shots.
Why Should I Get My Cat Vaccinated?
Though you may not think your indoor cat needs vaccinations, by law, cats must have certain vaccinations in many states. For example, most states require cats over the age of 6 months to be vaccinated against rabies. In return for the vaccinations, your veterinarian will provide you with a vaccination certificate, which should be stored in a safe place.
If you take your cat to the groomer you are putting them in an area that is frequented by many different cats. Some illnesses that cats can contract are airborne meaning that just being in the space that another cat has been in can result in them catching a virus.
When considering your cat’s health, it’s always important to be cautious, as cats are often curious by nature. Our Monte Vista Small Animal Hospital vets recommend vaccinations for indoor or outdoor cats to protect them against diseases they could be exposed to.
Kitten Vaccination ScheduleFirst visit (6 to 8 weeks)
- Review nutrition and grooming
- Blood test for feline leukemia
- Fecal exam for parasites
- Vaccinations for chlamydia, calicivirus, rhinotracheitis and panleukopenia
- Examination and external check for parasites
- First feline leukemia vaccine
- Second vaccinations for calicivirus rhinotracheitis, and panleukopenia
- First feline leukemia vaccine
- Rabies vaccine
- Second feline leukemia vaccine
When Will My Cat Need Booster Shots?
Depending on the vaccine, adult cats should get booster shots either annually or every three years. Your vet will tell you when to bring your adult cat back for booster shots.
Potential Side Effects of Cat Vaccinations
Most cats will not experience any side effects as a result of receiving cat vaccines. If reactions do occur, they are usually minor and short in duration. However, keep these potential negative side effects in mind:
- Loss of appetite
- Redness of swelling around the injection site
- Severe lethargy
If you have any concerns that your cat is having an adverse reaction to the vaccine please contact your vet.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.