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As a pet owner, you may hear so many references to vaccinations that you're wondering why these shots seem to be so urgently emphasized by veterinary health professionals, boarding facilities, shelters and other animal agencies. Vaccination may be considered a routine procedure, but there's nothing routine about the tremendous wellness benefits it conveys for pets just like yours. That's why your veterinarian, Dr. Dianna Smith or Dr. Sherif Boctor, offers a full range of dog and cat vaccinations here at Terra Losa Animal Clinic in Edmonton.
When puppies or kittens are born, some of the disease immunity in their mother's bloodstream is passed on to them -- but only temporarily. This second-hand protection vanished during the first weeks of life, leaving the baby animals completely vulnerable to some very frightening and even deadly infectious diseases. That's why we're so insistent on getting your new little friend vaccinated as early in life as possible, typically at the age of 8 weeks. These vaccinations in turn eventually lose their ability to protect your pet, so they must be re-administered in the form of booster shots on a predetermined schedule. (Your Edmonton veterinarian will make sure you know when booster shots are due.)
Vaccinations are a perfect example of "fighting fire with fire." A vaccine is a killed or inert sample of the disease organism in question. When it is introduced into the bloodstream, the pet's immune system regards it as a genuine threat and creates antibodies to defend against it, thus safeguarding your pet against the real thing.
Every puppy and kitten should receive core vaccinations as part of their wellness care routine. Core vaccinations protect against especially feared and commonplace health threats. These threats include:
Some of these vaccinations can be administered in "packaged" form. For example, the DHPP vaccine is a "4-in 1" shot that vaccinates your dog against hepatitis, parvovirus and distemper (as well as a non-core threat, parainfluenza). Cats can receive an FVRCP vaccine that protects against feline distemper (also called panleukopenia), calicivirus and rhinotracheitis.
Sometimes non-core vaccinations are recommended in specific situations. Pets that are subject to frequent boarding or interactions with other animals, for instance, may benefit from vaccination against "kennel cough," a common and highly contagious respiratory disease. Animals that will be traveling through tick-infested areas may need to be vaccinate
d against Lyme disease. We can advise you on the value of these vaccinations.
Now that you see what a critical role vaccination can play in your pet's ongoing health and wellness, don't delay in getting those initial vaccinations or booster shots scheduled. Contact Terra Losa Animal Clinic at 780-484-1178 today so we can help you keep your pet safe from dangerous diseases!