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Just like human babies, kittens need full-time loving care to develop into healthy, happy adult cats. Because the immune systems of young animals are not fully mature, your kitten may suffer infectious diseases that can make them extremely sick. Valley Animal Hospital in Clifton, NJ provides all the vaccinations your kitten needs along with a variety of medical services to ensure Tiger or Snowball flourishes as a member of your family.
Rabies, herpes virus (causes feline upper respiratory infections), calicivirus (also responsible for URIs in cats) and panleukopenia (feline distemper) are considered "core" vaccinations needed to keep your cat in good health. Non-core vaccinations, or vaccinations that are not necessary for cats to travel internationally or to be boarded at kennels, include feline leukemia virus and feline immunodeficiency virus.
Your new kitten should have his first combination vaccine ( feline distemper, calicivirus and rhinotracheitis) at six to seven weeks old, then again at 10 weeks. Rabies vaccines are given to cats older than 12 weeks. Your vet will recommend another combination vaccine at 13 weeks containing the feline leukemia and pneumonitis vaccine. When your cat is about five months old, he should receive a combination vaccine, another combination vaccine when he is an adult cat and booster vaccines as directed by your Clifton veterinarian.
Distemper is a serious, often fatal illness affecting cats and dogs capable of rapidly deteriorating your cat's health. Symptoms of distemper include diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration, low white cell count and convulsions. Spread when an animal comes in contact with an infected animal's saliva, blood or urine, distemper is especially devastating in younger animals and almost always proves fatal if not treated immediately. Vaccinating your cat against distemper is essential to the lifelong well-being of your cat.
Rabies is a potentially fatal viral disease affecting the central nervous system of cats, humans and mammals. Unless treated promptly, rabies causes symptoms resembling dementia or other neurological disorder, such as confusion, lethargy and extreme anxiety. Late-stage rabies causes excessive salivation ("foaming" at the mouth), aggressiveness and difficulty swallowing. Within days of these symptoms appearing, animals suffering rabies cannot be saved and will succumb to the disease.
Pet vaccinations mildly stimulate your pet's immune system in order to establish a defense mechanism against infectious diseases. As a result of this stimulation, some pets experience minimal side effects that usually disappear within 24 to 48 hours. Soreness and swelling at the injection site, coughing, sneezing or running a low-grade fever are the more common symptoms of simple vaccine reaction. Very rarely do pets have a serious allergic reaction to vaccines.
New Jersey residents can learn more about cat vaccinations in Clifton by calling our Clifton veterinarian at Valley Animal Hospital today at (973) 509-5225. Our animal hospital is located in Clifton, NJ but we also serve the communities of Nutley and Montclair. Our veterinarians will be more than happy to answer any questions you have about the recommended vaccination schedule for kittens.