Vaccinations play a critical role in keeping cats healthy throughout their lifetime. Our Seymour vet recommends following this vaccination schedule to protect your kitten from several potentially deadly feline diseases.
Why should I get my cat vaccinated?
It is critical to have your kitten vaccinated to protect it from a variety of serious feline-specific diseases. Following your kitten's initial vaccinations, it is critical to follow up with regular booster shots throughout your cat's life.
Booster shots 'boost' your cat's protection against a range of feline diseases, as the effectiveness of the initial vaccine wears off. Booster shots for different vaccines are given on varying schedules. Your vet will let you know when to bring your cat back their booster shots.
Vaccinations for cats fall into two basic types.
Core vaccinations are recommended for all cats. These vaccinations are considered vital for protecting your cat from the following common and serious feline conditions:
- Panleukopenia (feline distemper)
- Feline calicivirus (FCV)
- Feline herpesvirus type I (FHV, FHV-1)
Non-core vaccinations are suitable for some cats, based on their lifestyle. Your vet will advise you as to which non-core vaccines are recommended for your cat. Non-core vaccines include protection against:
- Feline leukemia virus (FeLV)
- Chlamydophila felis
- Feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV)
When should my kitten get their first shots?
Your kitten should have their first round of vaccinations around the age of six to eight weeks. Following that, your kitten should receive a series of vaccines every three or four weeks until they are about 16 weeks old.
When should I bring my cat back to the vet for booster shots?
Depending on the vaccine, adult cats should get booster shots once a year or every three years. When you should bring your adult cat back for booster shots, your vet will advise you.
Will my kitten be protected after the first round of shots?
Your kitten is not fully vaccinated until they have received all of their injections, at about 12-16 weeks of age. Once they have received all of those initial vaccinations your kitten will be protected against the diseases covered by the vaccines.
If you want to let your kitten out before they have received all of their vaccines, confine them to low-risk areas such as your backyard.
Do I need to get my indoor cat vaccinated?
You may not think that your indoor cat needs to be vaccinated, however many states including Tennessee require that cats over the age of 6 months be vaccinated against rabies. When you have your cat vaccinated your vet will provide you with a certificate of vaccination which you should store in a safe place.
When it comes to your cat's health, it's always better to be safe than sorry. Cats are inquisitive creatures. Our veterinarians recommend that indoor cats receive all of the core vaccinations to protect them from diseases that they may encounter if they escape the safety of their home.