Vaccinations are important for maintaining good health in pets. Whether you have a puppy or kitten, dog or cat, regular vaccinations can help your pet in Overland Park avoid common illnesses and fatal diseases. At Nall Hills Animal Hospital, we administer core and non-core pet vaccinations in our community.
When to Bring Your Pet In For a Vaccination
Pets get their first vaccinations when they’re about eight weeks old. Follow up shots happen a few weeks later, and again a few weeks after that. In the first year of life, puppies and kittens may get a variety of vaccinations including distemper and rabies. After the first year of life, pets need to follow up vaccines and booster shots to maintain immunity.
Your pet’s veterinarian will help you determine when your pet should get vaccines and which vaccines are right for your pet. At Nall Hills Animal Hospital, we help pet owners track their pet’s vaccination schedule. Pets who come in for wellness exams are given shots when they are due. For pets who are not yet due for shots, we give pet owners reminders and help them schedule their pet’s next vaccination appointment.
Core Vs. Non-Core Vaccines
Core vaccines are given to all pets regardless of their habits and environmental factors. Non-core vaccines are only given to pets if they are at high risk for certain illnesses. Your pet’s veterinarian at Nall Hills Animal Hospital can help you determine whether or not your pet needs non-core vaccines along with core vaccines.
Required Vaccinations for Dogs and Cats
Dogs and cats are given a variety of core vaccines. Cat core vaccines include feline calicivirus, feline panleukopenia, feline rhinotracheitis, and rabies. Dog core vaccines include distemper, canine parvovirus, canine hepatitis, and rabies. The rabies vaccination is administered to pets in order for the pet to be licensed.
Types of Vaccinations / Schedule
Your pet’s veterinarian at Nall Hills Animal Hospital will help you determine when your pet should get a shot. A typical shot schedule might go like this:
Contact Your Pet’s Veterinarian in Overland Park
As your pet’s veterinarian in Overland Park, Nall Hills Animal Hospital is committed to ensuring that your pet gets the right vaccinations at the right age. We can help protect your pet from a variety of deadly and serious conditions. We also administer a variety of other puppy and kitten preventative measures to keep young pets healthy. To make an appointment and to get your pet vaccinated, contact us at 913-341-8836
Vaccines are inert, non-infectious “lookalike” substances that bear the same molecular markers as the germs we want to protect your pet against. When they’re introduced into your pet’s body, the immune system reacts as if it sees a genuine threat and manufactures antibodies that will be effective against the real thing.
Baby animals haven’t created their own lifesaving antibodies yet; they also have whatever immunity their mother’s milk has temporarily lent them. Vaccinations are a safe, effective way to build that immunity without actually exposing them to diseases.
Core vaccinations are those “must-have” protections against, particularly common and dangerous infections. Dogs require core vaccinations against rabies, hepatitis, parvovirus, and distemper; cats must be vaccinated against rabies, calicivirus, rhinotracheitis, and panleukopenia.
Elective (“non-core”) vaccinations are those that aren’t necessary for every animal but may prove extremely beneficial in certain high-risk situations. For instance, cats and dogs who will bring into close company with other pets might need to be vaccinated against Bordetella, while animals in tick-infested areas might benefit from a Lyme disease vaccination.
Puppies and kittens should receive their first round of core vaccinations from your Overland Park veterinarian at 8 weeks, with 3 additional rounds by the age of 16 weeks. This helps ensure a strong foundation of immunity.
Vaccines may vary in the duration of their protective powers, fading after anywhere from 1 to 3 years. Your Overland Park veterinarian will recommend booster shots at specific intervals to keep your pet’s immunity intact.
Most vaccinations produce minimal, if any side effects, such as slight fever or flu-like symptoms. Rarely a pet may exhibit an allergic reaction, which our Overland Park, Kansas clinic can treat with prompt attention. But it’s important to bear in mind that the benefits of this form of disease protection far outweigh any risks.