Why vaccinate?

Just like human diseases, viral dog and cat diseases are highly contagious and can be fatal. Treatment for such diseases is often lengthy and expensive, and there is no guarantee that it will be successful. Prevention in the form of vaccination is essential to protect your pet from serious and life threatening diseases.

 When to vaccinate your pet

We recommend puppies and kittens be given an initial course of three vaccinations followed by continued annual vaccinations to maintain immunity against disease. 

The physical examination

As part of our vaccination service we also perform a thorough physical examination and health assessment to ensure your pet is in good health. Pets can’t tell us when something is wrong and they are often good at hiding when they are in pain or discomfort. The physical examination is a very important component of the vaccination appointment as it provides an opportunity to detect any serious problems, allowing for early intervention and treatment.

What we check for during the physical examination:

The vet conducts a distant examination as soon as your pet walks through the door, examining coat, gate, posture, body condition, breathing and demeanor.

The vet will then move on to the hands on exam which involves a nose to tail approach, examining each component of your pet’s body.

Starting with the head, the veterinarian will observe any abnormalities in the eyes, ears, nose, mouth and skin, followed by an examination of the lymph nodes and glands under the jaw. Next the vet will assess your pet’s front limbs and listen to their heart and lungs to detect any abnormal sounds. Palpation of the abdomen will assess for swelling and pain of internal organs. The vet will also palpate the femoral pulses in the lymph nodes inside the thighs before checking the popliteal lymph nodes at the back of the legs. The hind legs are then examined for common diseases, focusing on the hips and knees.

The vet will then examine the genital area for abnormalities before taking your pet’s temperature. In some situations, the vet might also perform a rectal examination which will evaluate the consistency of faeces, the anal glands and check for any obstructions.

Canine Vaccination Schedule

Our vaccination schedule provides your dog with protection from the following diseases:

Canine parvovirus – A highly contagious viral disease. The virus attacks the intestines causing bloodstained diarrhoea, uncontrollable vomiting and severe abdominal pain. Dogs suffering from the disease often die from severe dehydration despite intensive veterinary care. 

 Canine distemper – A highly contagious viral disease that can affect dogs of any age with young puppies being at highest risk. Symptoms vary but can include fever, coughing, sneezing, nasal discharge, vomiting, diarrhoea, loss of appetite and depression. Muscle tremors, seizures and paralysis usually occur later in the disease. Treatment is usually ineffective and the recovery rate is very low. Dogs that do recover may have permanent brain damage.

 Canine hepatitis – A highly contagious and often fatal disease. Symptoms include high fever, depression, loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhoea and acute abdominal pain. In severe cases death can occur within 24 to 36 hours. Dogs that recover may develop long term liver and kidney problems and can act as carriers spreading the disease to other dogs for many months.

 Canine cough (kennel cough) – A condition produced by several highly infectious diseases, which can be easily spread wherever dogs congregate e.g. parks, shows, obedience schools and boarding kennels. Affected dogs have a dry hacking cough which can persist for several weeks. It is distressing for dogs and their owners.

Please contact us to discuss a suitable vaccination schedule for your pet.

Feline Vaccination Schedule

Our vaccination schedule provides your cat with protection from the following diseases:

Feline Panleukopenia – A very contagious and often fatal disease, particularly in cats under 12 months of age. Symptoms include depression, loss of appetite, uncontrollable vomiting and diarrhoea, often with blood and severe abdominal pain. The virus spreads so easily that heavily contaminated areas may need cleaning with a special disinfectant. Cats that do recover may continue to carry the virus for some time and infect other cats.

Feline Rhinotracheitis (Cat Flu) – A common respiratory disease that affects cats of all ages, especially young kittens, Siamese and Burmese cats. It is highly contagious and causes sneezing, coughing, runny eyes, nasal discharge, loss of appetite and tongue ulcers. Fortunately, the death rate is low except in young kittens, but the disease is distressing and may persist for several weeks. Recovered cats can continue to carry and spread the infection for long periods, and can show signs of the disease again if they become stressed.

Feline Leukaemia (FeLV) – A serious disease of cats caused by feline leukaemia virus. The virus attacks the immune system and may be associated with lack of appetite, weight loss and apathy, pale or yellow mucous membranes, vomiting, diarrhoea, reproductive problems, increased susceptibility to other infections, leukaemia and tumours. Many cats may be infected and show no signs at all. About one third of infected cats remain chronically infected and may shed virus in their saliva, tears, nasal secretions and urine. The disease is then spread to uninfected cats by mutual grooming, fighting, sneezing or even flea bites.

Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV or Feline Aids) – A disease caused by infection with feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) and affects the cat’s immune system. Their natural defense against attack by other diseases may be seriously affected, much in the same way as human AIDS. This disease is not transmissible to humans. FIV is almost always transmitted by bites from infected cats. The virus that causes the disease is present in saliva. While some infected cats show no sign of disease, others may display initial symptoms such as fever, loss of appetite, diarrhoea, lethargy and swollen lymph nodes. As the disease progresses, symptoms may occur such as weight loss, sores in and around the mouth, eye lesions, poor coat and chronic infections. Eventually, the immune system becomes too weak to fight off other infections and diseases. As a result, the cat may die from one of these subsequent infections. Unfortunately in Australia, a lot of cats are infected with this virus.

Please contact us to discuss a suitable vaccination schedule for your pet.