Cat Vaccinations Winchester VA
Cat Vaccination Schedule: MyPetED Vet on Feline Leukemia Virus, FIV
By Ernest Ward, DVM
What cat vaccines does my kitten or adult cat need?
- Primary vaccination is essential for preventing the return of the once common infectious diseases that caused high levels of deaths in kittens and cats. Boosters (repeat doses) help maintain protection throughout a cat’s life.
- It’s likely that your vet recommends “core” vaccines for all cats, plus other vaccines proven to protect cats against potentially life-threatening diseases.
- Your vet will select the correct cat vaccination schedule for each individual pet.
Currently the “core” kitten and cats vaccines recommended by the American Association of Feline Practitioners (AAFP) include:
- Feline Distemper or feline panleukopenia (FPL) caused by the feline parvovirus (FPLV)
- Feline Herpes Virus Type 1, which causes feline viral rhinotracheitis (FVR)
- Feline Upper Respiratory Infection (Feline Caliciviral Disease) caused by various strains of Feline caliciviruses (FCV)
- Rabies caused by the Rabies virus
These "non-core" or discretionary vaccines are recommended by the AAFP for kittens and cats with a realistic risk of exposure to specific diseases:
- Feline Chlamydiosis caused by Chlamydophila felis infection
- Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV) which causes feline leukemia disease complex(some AAFP members feel this should be a core vaccine)
- Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) which is also called the feline AIDS virus
- Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP) caused by FIP virus or Feline Coronavirus
- Bordetellosis caused by the bacterium Bordetella bronchiseptica
Two other vaccines may be appropriate under certain conditions, even if they’re no on the AAFP-recommended list:
- Giardiasis caused by the protozoan parasite Giardia lamblia
How do vaccines work to protect my cat against feline viruses and illnesses?
Vaccines stimulate a cat’s immune system to fight against microorganisms including viruses, bacteria, etc. by preventing infection or lessening its severity and promoting rapid recovery. Here’s a simple explanation of the process.
- In the complex immune system, various cells and tissues work together to react to microorganisms. The main cells that do this are the white blood cells; the main tissues are lymph nodes and other lymph tissues.
- Together, the cells and tissues produce specific protein molecules called antibodies. Disease-carrying microorganism, such as Feline Panleukopenia Virus, have components called antigens.
- When a foreign antigen “attacks” the cat’s body, the immune system produces an antibody that specifically binds and neutralizes it.
- Sometimes the body can identify and kill cells already infected by the microorganism. (This is called cell-mediated immunity.)
- After vaccination, the body “remembers” the specific antigens. When attacked by them again, the body mounts a rapid and strong immune response, preventing the cat from developin...
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