At South Burnaby Veterinary Hospital, we know how important it is for your cat to live a healthy life. Annual exams together with vaccinations are an important part of their health care. During your annual visit, we can assess your furry family member’s physical health and assist you in deciding on different vaccines that he or she may need.
Does my indoor cat need to be vaccinated?
We know that one of the reasons you have an indoor cat is to keep them safe. Did you know that even indoor cats can be exposed to viruses that we may carry in on our clothing or shoes? While cats who live solely indoors and don’t come in contact with other cats have little risk of exposure to feline leukemia and may not need this vaccination, rabies is a concern in B.C. because of our bat population. Therefore, even indoor cats can be at risk. During your appointment, our veterinarians will be happy to discuss all of the options with you and work on a vaccine plan that is suited to you and your cat.
What are FVRCP and core vaccines for cats?
FVRCP is the main vaccine given to cats and it is considered a core vaccine. It covers the following:
- Feline herpesvirus-1/feline viral rhinotracheitis: Causes infectious respiratory disease and lifelong infection that leads to recurrent flare-ups.
- Calicivirus: Also causes respiratory disease, often characterized by oral and nasal ulcers.
- Panleukopenia: Causes life-threatening blood cell deficiencies, vomiting, diarrhea, and dehydration.
Additional vaccines (non-core) that cats may need based on their lifestyle include:
- Rabies: In B.C., rabies is a concern in our bat population, and even indoor cats can be at risk for exposure.
- Feline leukemia: Can cause a lifelong infection that leads to a weakened immune system and chronic illness.
- Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV): Contracted when a cat is bitten during a cat fight, FIV causes immunosuppression and chronic illness.
How often does my adult cat need to be vaccinated?
Vaccines are given based on your cat’s lifestyle. Our veterinarians are happy to discuss your cat’s risks and come up with a recommendation during your annual appointment.
Are there any risks associated with cat vaccines?
Vaccinations are the most reliable method of disease prevention and pose a few risks. As with us when we get a flu vaccine, it is not uncommon for cats to feel lethargic after a vaccination. If you have any concerns, feel free to ask our veterinary team.