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Which Vaccines Does my Pet Need?

vaccinesMany owners want to give their pets the protection against serious disease that is provided by vaccination, while avoiding the unnecessary expense and potential health consequences of over-vaccination. Finding the proper balance between risk and benefit is the goal, which often brings about the question, “which vaccines does my dog or cat need and which can we do without?”

Except in the rarest of cases, all dogs should be vaccinated against rabies, canine distemper, canine adenovirus, and canine parvovirus. If your dog comes into contact with other dogs, giving a parainfluenza virus and Bordetella bronchiseptica vaccine is also a good idea. Depending on a dog’s lifestyle and geographic location, your veterinarian might also recommend vaccinating against canine influenza virus, Lyme disease, leptospirosis, and other diseases.

Virtually every cat should be vaccinated against rabies, feline herpes virus (rhinotracheitis), panleukopenia (distemper) and calicivirus. Feline leukemia virus (FELV) and feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) vaccines may also be warranted for individuals that could come into contact with infected cats.

Your veterinarian is in the best position to help you decide exactly which feline or canine vaccines your pet needs.

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