Dogs and cats are just as prone as humans to picking up viruses, albeit different ones to us! This means that vaccinations and boosters are essential part of caring for your pet.
Core vaccinations include one for feline parvovirus and others to prevent cat flu. As with people, flu can spread rapidly and has many different strains, which means that it will never be completely wiped out. A cat flu vaccine – given from around eight weeks of age – will boost immunity. A booster vaccine should be given a year later.
There are many diseases that dogs should be vaccinated against. However, most vaccines are combined, and the schedule starts when the puppy is about six weeks old. As an adult a Lyme disease jab should be given once a year, particularly if you walk in grassy or woodland areas.
Will This Hurt?
Pets are generally given an injection underneath the skin at the scruff of the neck. Dogs’ kennel cough vaccine is usually administered as a nasal spray, however. The single-use disposable needle is very sharp and shouldn’t trouble your dog or cat too much.
Make a note in your diary to get these shots done regularly. It’s part of the cost of owning a pet and of course prevention is so much better – and cheaper – than cure.