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If possible, give kittens and puppies vaccinations according to the following guidelines. Sometimes vaccinations may be given earlier, but keep as close to this schedule as is practicable – this will reduce the risk of adverse reactions significantly.

  • 1st vaccination: 12 weeks (or later)
  • 2nd vaccination: 16 weeks (or later)
  • (leave four weeks between vaccinations if possible)
  • Booster at fifteen months (or later)
  • Any further boosters at not less than three yearly intervals
  • For cats: vaccinate for Feline Panleucopaenia (Feline Enteritis) and Cat ‘Flu viruses. Vaccinate for Feline Leukaemia only if your cat will be at risk (i.e. will spend time outdoors and may be in close contact with other cats). This vaccine is unnecessary for cats kept indoors or in enclosed runs/gardens. Avoid other vaccines (e.g. Chlamydia) unless you are advised your cat runs a specific risk of contracting the infection.
  • For dogs: vaccinate only for the important (core) vaccines (Distemper, Parvovirus and Canine Hepatitis. Consider Leptospirosis yearly only if your dog is at risk and if manufacturer can guarantee their vaccine contains the strains of Leptospirosis likely to be encountered by dogs in the UK. Avoid other non core vaccines such as Kennel cough and rabies if possible. In some countries Rabies vaccination is mandatory
  • Consider requesting blood tests to check antibody levels, rather than administering regular boosters. Many pets are found to have sufficient antibodies for anything from five to ten years following the last vaccination.

Do not vaccinate if your pet:

  • is not in good health
  • is on any medication
  • has had a previous adverse reaction to a vaccination
  • is otherwise at risk (e.g. family history of autoimmune disease or epilepsy)

Whenever vaccination is to be given, help protect against adverse reactions by giving homoeopathic Thuja 30c: one dose three times daily for three days before, and five days after, vaccination.

Author Richard Allport BVetMed, VetMFHom, MRCVS

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