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Your caring local Vet and friendly team
Hampton park doggie wash for all pets
Serving the community for over 20 years
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Open Mon - Fri: 8am to 8pm Sat: 9am to 3pm | Hospital Address: Cnr Somerville Rd & Outlook Dr Hampton Park 3976

Mar 31, 2016

What Do We Vaccinate Cats For?

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There are 3 different diseases that we vaccinate cats against. These diseases can make your pet very ill, potentially requiring days to weeks of hospitalisation. They can even be fatal. There is no cure for these diseases – once infected, symptoms must be managed as best as possible long term. Luckily, keeping your pet up to date with their vaccinations provides effective protection against these diseases. Read on for more information about the different diseases we vaccinate against!

Cat Flu

Rather than being a disease with a single cause, cat flu can be caused by two different types of virus, and often involves secondary bacterial infections. This disease is very common in unvaccinated cats. Symptoms include chronic sneezing, nasal discharge, inflamed eyes and severe gum problems. More severe cases require hospital stays to keep cats hydrated, eating, and to assist them with breathing. Affected cats often require long term management and supplementation to keep their symptoms under control. The disease is spread by coming into contact with infected cats (cats can spread infection even if they aren’t showing symptoms of disease). Cats can also catch the flu by inhaling virus that is floating in the air – no direct contact with other cats is required. Vaccinating your cat prevents infection, and reduces the severity of disease in cats that are already infected.

Feline Panleukopenia virus (FPV), also known as Feline infectious enteritis

FPV is a highly contagious and life threatening disease in cats. It is spread by coming into contact with infected cats, or people or objects that have been in contact with infected cats. Kittens can also catch it if their mum is infected while they are in the womb, or through their mum’s milk – the prognosis for these kittens is grave. It attacks the intestines, the bone marrow and the foetus in pregnant animals. Symptoms range from vomiting and dehydration (when the intestines are affected), anaemia and immune suppression (leading to secondary infection), brain disease and lack of coordination (especially in cats that are exposed while in the womb). There is NO TREATMENT for this disease – all that can be done is to keep them in hospital on a drip to rehydrate them and support them while their immune system tries to fight the infection. Because this disease attacks the immune system itself, this often fails, and the cat dies. This disease is easily prevented by keeping your cat up to date with vaccinations.

Cat Aids (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, or FIV)

Cat Aids, similar to human aids, causes suppression of the immune system. It is spread by getting bitten by infected cats, so all cats that go outside should be vaccinated. Cats that are infected will initially show no symptoms. Over time their immune system becomes more and more suppressed, until the point where they become susceptible to secondary infections that a healthy immune system would be able to fight off. They also become more likely to get various types of cancer. The symptoms they show at this stage will vary depending on what the secondary infection is, but may include weight loss, lack of appetite, lethargy, and so on. Affected cats can die of cancer or the secondary infections that their immune system can no longer fight. Treatment available for infected cats is limited, aiming to help their immune system fight off infection and being very thorough with preventative care, such as vaccinations, and flea and worming treatment. This disease is not a concern for indoor only cats. The best way to prevent this disease for cats that do go outside is to vaccinate them against it.

At HPVH we feel vaccination is so important we are running a vaccination amnesty this autumn. We will vaccinate your unvaccinated/lapsed vaccinated adult pet with a full vaccination course for the price of a booster! A massive saving, and peace of mind knowing you will not lose them to preventable disease. Feel free also to share this offer if you know of a friend that may need help.

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