What is my dog being vaccinated against?
Parvo is a serious life threatening viral disease. Vaccinating has decreased the prevalence of the illness today but we still see it particularly, in young unvaccinated puppies. Symptoms of the virus include severe vomiting and diarrhoea which despite veterinary intervention can be fatal.
Leptospirosis is a dangerous bacterial disease. There are several strains that can affect dogs and these are all included in the one vaccine. Lepto is not only spread dog to dog but it can also be contracted from swimming/drinking from water sources that have been contaminated by rodent’s urine. As it is a bacterial disease people are often naive in thinking that it can simply be treated with antibiotics, however, Lepto often causes irreversible damage to the kidneys and liver which ultimately are fatal. In addition, this is a zoonotic disease which means it can be contracted by humans.
Parainfluenza is the viral component of the common condition known as “kennel cough”. Dogs generally present with a harsh, hacking cough often producing white phlegm. As this is a viral disease there is no specific treatment and in some severe cases it can cause lasting damage to the chest.
Distemper is a viral disease that primarily attacks the gastro-intestinal tract, respiratory and nervous systems. Common symptoms include fever, eye inflammation and eye/nose discharge, laboured breathing and coughing, vomiting and diarrhoea, loss of appetite and lethargy, and hardening of nose and footpads. In many cases the disease is fatal and even if the dog survives they are likely to have lifelong clinical symptoms.
Canine Adenovirus (Infectious Hepatitis):
As the name suggests this virus primarily affects the liver but also attacks the kidneys, eyes and lungs. The disease progresses very quickly and can cause death within 24 hours. The small percentage of dogs that recover from the illness become carriers of the virus and can shed it for months therefore infecting others readily.
Bordetella is the bacterial component of “kennel cough” and is commonly the additional vaccination that boarding establishments will ask for prior to your pets stay. Just like parainfluenza, the clinical signs are very similar, however, this condition can be treated with a combination of anti-inflammatories and antibiotics. This is a separate vaccine from the above mentioned diseases and is administered by the intra-nasal route. Although it can be treated some animals with severe clinical signs/the very young and or old can be left with damage to the respiratory system therefore prevention is better than treatment!
Rabies is not a condition we have in the Ireland as of yet. If your pet is going abroad with the PETS they will need it in addition to the vaccinations above. Info on Pet Passports here.
What is my cat being vaccinated against?
Cat flu is a multifactorial disease made up of Feline Herpes virus, Feline Calcivirus and Chlamydophila Felis. Clinical manifestations of flu include sneezing, runny eyes and nose, eye and mouth ulceration, lethargy, fever and inappetance. Treatment of the disease is mainly supportive, including fluid therapy, enteral feeding and antibiotics in case of secondary infection. In severe cases, some cats will be left with lasting respiratory damage and/or reoccurring symptoms.
This disease is caused by Parvovirus and produces similar symptoms like its canine counterpart, such as severe vomiting and diarrhoea. Infected cats require rigorous treatment and in many cases, it can still be fatal. In addition, it is extremely dangerous to pregnant cats because the infection can not only kill her but also spread to the unborn kitten and interfere with the developing brain. Subsequently, the kittens that are born can have serious neurological problems and often have to be put to sleep.
Feline Leukaemia (FeLV):
FeLV is a very dangerous disease which there is currently no treatment for. Clinical signs are extremely diverse but include fever, lethargy, poor appetite, weight loss, and persistent or recurrent respiratory, skin and intestinal problems. FeLV is an important cause of disease and death in cats. In a cat persistently (permanently) infected with the virus, there is significant risk of developing many severe illnesses, such as anaemia (low red blood cells), immunosuppression and cancer. It has been estimated that 80-90% of infected cats die within three or four years of FeLV diagnosis.
(end of vaccination section)
healthy pets require routine flea and worm treatments