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August is Immunization Awareness Month: Have You Checked Your Pet’s Immunization Record?

Vaccines fundamentally changed modern medicine. Beginning with the smallpox vaccine in the 18th century, vaccines have continued to be developed for both human and animal health. The rabies vaccine, developed by Louis Pasteur, was first administered to dogs in 1881. Vaccines play a crucial role in preventive medicine to protect both people and animals from the risk of serious and sometimes fatal diseases.

A vaccine is a preparation that helps the body’s immune system prepare to fight disease-causing organisms. If the immune system has been introduced to an unfamiliar microbe (bacteria or virus) as part of a vaccine, it’s ready to produce antibodies if it recognizes or is exposed to the same microbe again. Antibodies are what help the body fight infection and protect the body from getting the same illness again. Vaccinations are intended to reduce the severity of the illness and/or prevent the disease entirely, by creating immunity.

Vaccinations have improved the lives of cats and dogs around the world and have also played an important role in public safety. Although veterinary vaccination programs have not yet eliminated diseases, vaccines for rabies, distemper, parvovirus, feline leukemia and panleukopenia have greatly reduced the incidences of disease, thereby improving the lives of our pets and reducing death caused by preventable disease. for example, the greatest achievement with the vaccination of companion animals is the reduction of canine distemper – a contagious, serious, and often fatal disease of dogs.

Another great achievement associated with vaccinations is the elimination of rabies in people caused by dogs in the United States, Canada, western Europe, Japan and 28 of the 35 Latin American countries. Unfortunately, rabies is still widespread in many developing countries around the world. Although rabies is preventable, it still kills about 59,000 people each year. ninety-nine percent of these deaths are caused by dog bites and nearly half of the victims are children.

The vaccines that are recommended for dogs and cats vary according to geographical location and lifestyle. Some vaccines are “core,” indicating that they are recommended for all dogs or cats, while others are recommended only in certain circumstances.

Core vaccines for dogs:

Canine Distemper Virus

Canine Adenovirus-2 (Canine Hepatitis)

Canine Parvovirus

Rabies Virus

Non-core vaccines for dogs:

Bordetella Bronchiseptica + Canine Parainfluenza (Kennel Cough)

Leptospira

Borrelia Burgdorferi or Lyme Disease

Canine Influenza (H3N8 and H3N2)

Rattlesnake Vaccine

Core vaccines for cats:

Feline Panleukopenia (FPL) (also known as feline infectious enteritis or feline

distemper)

Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis (also known as herpes virus-1 or FHV-1)

Feline Calicivirus

Rabies Virus (required by law in certain areas)

Non-core vaccines for cats:

Chlamydophila Felis

Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV)

Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP) caused by FIP virus or feline coronavirus

Bordetella Bronchiseptica

Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV)

During this month of August, check your pet’s immunization records to see if he/she missed vaccinations during the initial stages of COVID-19 shutdown. As we enter the “new norm”, it is important that your pet’s immunizations are up to date to protect him/her against preventable diseases. Call us 480 893-0533 to book an appointment today to protect your pets!

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Mon - Fri 7:30am - 5:30pm
Sat: 8 AM – 10 AM (Boarding and food/prescription pickup ONLY)