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Factsheets

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Dogs

Vaccination protects your dog by giving it immunity against the following major infectious diseases - Distemper, Parvovirus, Leptospira and Infectious Canine Hepatitis. We use a vaccine protocol to give the most comprehensive protection available against these life threatening diseases.

1st Vaccination - from 6 weeks of age.
2nd vaccination - 4-6 weeks later but not before 10 weeks of age, and no later than 6 weeks after the 1st vaccination. The timing of the 2nd vaccination is very important as it is this vaccination which gives the strongest protective immunity. (Late 2nd vaccination will require restarting the primary course to ensure adequate immunity). It is important that puppies are confined to a dog-proof garden and any other dogs in the household are exercised away from other dogs outside the home until 1 week after the 2nd vaccine has been given. The leptospira component of the vaccine doesn't give protection until 4 weeks after the 2nd vaccine, so while your puppy can be exercised away from home 1 week after the 2nd vaccination it is wise to avoid swimming in water or drinking from puddles until 4 weeks after 2nd vaccination. These precautions are important to minimize exposure to infectious diseases until the immune system has had time to respond to the vaccine and provide protection. The vaccine we use allows early socialisation from 11 weeks of age if the timing of the 2nd vaccination is completed at 10 weeks, without risk of contracting these diseases. This helps to minimize behavioural problems developing related to poor early socialisation.

Kennel Cough - protection can be provided from 10 weeks of age as an additional vaccine, giving 1 year of protection. Particularly important if your puppy is likely to be going to puppy classes, dog day care, kennelling or any other socialisation with other dogs such as exercising your dog in places where many other dogs are also exercised (see separate information on kennel cough).

Booster vaccination is required annually to maintain immunity. This includes a full health check examination, microchip check, weight check and advice on any health concerns. We only boost the components of the vaccine that are necessary at the required interval, based on the latest clinical trials for vaccine effectiveness and manufacturers guidelines. We have a policy of not over vaccinating.

Overdue Boosters - our policy (supported by our vaccine manufacturer)

If the annual booster vaccine overruns its due date by up to 3 months then we vaccinate as a normal booster.

If the annual booster vaccine overruns its due date by 3 - 6 months then levels of immunity provided by some components of the vaccine may not be effective in the face of possible exposure to infection. We recommend discussion with a vet who may advise restarting primary vaccination to restore adequate immunity.

If the annual booster vaccine overruns its due date by more than 6 months we recommend restarting the primary vaccination as some components of the vaccine have never been shown (on manufacturers or independent research) to provide immunity beyond this period.

Cats

Vaccination protects your cat by giving it immunity against the following major infectious diseases - Cat Flu, Feline Enteritis and Feline Leukaemia (provided the cat has not already contracted some of these infections before vaccination). Feline Leukaemia is included in our standard vaccine protocol unlike some practices where the standard vaccination is for cat flu and enteritis only, with feline leukaemia as an optional extra.

1st vaccination - from 9 weeks of age.
2nd vaccination - 3 to 4 weeks later, but no more than 4 weeks after the 1st vaccine. (Late 2nd vaccination will require restarting the primary course to ensure adequate immunity). The timing of the 2nd vaccine is very important as it is this vaccine which gives the strongest protective immunity. It is important that kittens are confined to the house, and other cats in the household have reduced exposure to other cats outside the home until 1 week after the 2nd vaccine has been given. This is to minimize exposure to infectious diseases until the immune system has had time to respond to the vaccine and provide protection.

Booster vaccination annually is required to maintain immunity and includes a full health check examination, microchip check, weight check and advice on any health concerns. We only boost the components of the vaccine that are necessary at the required interval, based on the latest clinical trials for vaccine effectiveness and manufacturers guidelines. We have a policy of not over vaccinating.

Overdue Boosters - our policy (supported by our vaccine manufacturer)

If the annual booster vaccine overruns its due date by up to 3 months then we vaccinate as a normal booster.

If the annual booster vaccine overruns its due date by 3 - 6 months then levels of immunity provided by some components of the vaccine may not be effective in the face of possible exposure to infection. We recommend discussion with a vet who may advise restarting primary vaccination to restore adequate immunity.

If the annual booster vaccine overruns its due date by more than 6 months we recommend restarting the primary vaccination as some components of the vaccine have never been shown (on manufacturers or independent research) to provide immunity beyond this period.

Rabbits

Vaccination provides immunity against the following infectious diseases -

Myxomatosis

This very unpleasant, often fatal disease is caused by a virus spread from wild rabbits by fleas. Rabbit fleas carrying the disease can spread to pet rabbits from direct contact with wild rabbits in gardens or from household or neighbourhood cats which hunt wild rabbits and acquire temporary rabbit flea infestations. The initial signs of infection are red, swollen and weepy eyes. Unfortunately, even if Myxomatosis is detected early, treatment is rarely successful.

Due to the prevalence of wild rabbits in this area, the risk of disease is high. The best way to protect your pet is by annual vaccination.

Viral Haemorrhagic Disease (VHD)

This disease is highly contagious and spread by both direct contact between rabbits or via contaminated hutches, bedding or food. Viral Haemorrhagic Disease (VHD) is a disease which can spread to pet rabbits when epidemics occur in the wild rabbit population either by direct contact with wild rabbits or the virus can be carried into the pet rabbit's environment on clothing and footwear.

Symptoms can include:-

  • Loss of appetite
  • Lethargy
  • Nasal bleeding
  • Difficulty breathing
  • High body temperature
  • Sudden death

Annual vaccination will also protect against this often fatal disease.

There is now a new combines Myxomatosis and VHD vaccine which, when administered annually protects against both diseases. Rabbits can be vaccinated from 5 weeks of age and provides protection from 3 weeks after vaccination.