The Importance of Vaccinating your Pets

Ciara McGarvey MVB

Vaccines are very topical currently in human medicine but have been a cornerstone of Veterinary medicine for a long time.

Most people know that when they welcome a new puppy or kitten into their family they must bring it to the vet for its vaccines. But, do you know what diseases you are protecting your pets against? Or how often they need to be vaccinated to sustain their immunity against these harmful and potentially fatal diseases?
All puppies and kittens will have some protection from their mother’s milk, as this contains antibodies to help fight infection. However, this means that whenever they are weaned and sent to live with their new families, this immunity is waning, and so they need a vaccine to continue this protection and allow their bodies to build up defences to fight these diseases themselves, should they come in contact with these bacteria and viruses. In Rockhall Vets, your dogs will be protected against DHPPI ( Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvo virus and the Flu) and L4 ( the 4 strains of Leptospirosis). We also offer protection for your dog against Bordetella Bronchiseptica ( Canine Cough).
Our cat vaccines cover 3 strains of cat flu and also Felv and FIV. We also have an additional vaccine that covers your cat against Chamdlyia on request.
For dogs, the primary course of vaccines ( for new puppies and dogs who are overdue their annual vaccines) comprises of one injection, followed by a second vaccine in 4 weeks’ time for dogs and puppies and between 3-4 weeks time for cats and kittens. An annual booster vaccination is then required yearly, every year for the rest of your pet’s life.
Rockhall understands that sometimes this can slip your mind, and with the pandemic over the last 2 years, owners may not have been able to bring in their pets for their yearly vaccine.
To try and help with this, Rockhall sends out reminders when your pet is due their annual vaccines. As well as this, for the month of April, Rockhall Vets is running a vaccine Amnesty ‘Boost and Protect’ offer. This means that any pets that are overdue for their annual vaccine and need to restart their primary vaccine course can avail of the 2nd ‘booster’ vaccine for free for the month of April.
This is particularly important this year as there has been an increase in parvo virus cases in Limerick city and county. Parvo virus is a highly infectious, potentially fatal disease, which causes severe vomiting and diarrhoea. There have also been two outbreaks of ‘Canine Cough’ in Limerick, again, this is a highly transmissible disease that can be spread when dogs are interacting together at dog parks, busy walking routes, kennels etc. This disease causes a cough that sounds like there’s something stuck in your dog’s throat and can be distressing for both owner and pet.
If you have any further questions regarding your pet’s vaccines, or to avail of our April ‘Boost and Protect’ offer, please do not hesitate to contact us on 061314203.