Cat Vaccination - How Vaccinations Prevent Cat Illnesses


What exactly are cat vaccinations?

Cat vaccinations are injectable substances that help you build immunity against certain diseases.


Dr. Lander
Advanced Animal Care in Richmond

Are cat vaccinations necessary?

I would highly recommend them. There are some core vaccines, for example, FVRCP and rabies, but there are some others that we maybe want to consider based on exposure to certain environments, et cetera.

What other vaccines are typically recommended and what are they for?

Yeah, so FVRCP is one of them. That stands for feline viral rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, and panleukopenia, which are three of the really important diseases to help build immunity against. Rabies carries over in dogs and cats. Those are the core ones that we really want to consider. FeLV, that's feline leukemia virus. Those are our three really core ones there.

What is the vaccination schedule for?

The vaccination schedule is for building immunity and boostering certain things at the times that they need to be given. So kittens, for example, should start vaccines anywhere between six and eight weeks of age and then three weeks after that, all the way up to the fourth round of vaccines.

Is there a timeline for adult and senior cats?

With adults, we'll do annual vaccines for things like FVRCP, FeLV, and rabies. Rabies may not have to be given every year, but that's kind of a different subject there. And then with geriatric cats, we may need to consider whether or not they've had negative reactions in the past, and if they did, we may not give any vaccines at all. Typical, however, we recommend annual vaccines.

Are there risks or side effects associated with cat vaccination?

Yeah, there can be risks. Sometimes, cats can have an allergic reaction. Or cats can be a little painful or swollen at the injection site. The most serious kind of complication you can have with vaccines in cats is something called injection site sarcoma. It's very unlikely. The highest percentage reported is 0.01%, actually, so it's pretty rare. But there are certain things that we'll try to do to help manage that if need be.

If my cat is going to be strictly indoors, do they still need to be vaccinated?

I would recommend it. There are certain diseases like the feline leukemia virus that can be spread just by saliva alone, perhaps if another cat is introduced into the environment. So being vaccinated against that would really help build immunity against that in case of exposure.

Why is it important to avoid missing a cat vaccination?

We are really altering the ability to build up as much immunity as possible against these diseases.

If you still have other questions and you'd like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at (859) 202-3641, you can email us, or you can reach out on Facebook. But please do reach out, and we'll get back to you as fast as we can.

Cat Vaccination - FAQs


Dr. Lander
Advanced Animal Care in Richmond

Can my cat have an allergic reaction to a cat vaccine?

Yeah, absolutely. We know the positive effects of building immunity by injecting those vaccines. Sometimes, however, they can have a more negative response, such as mild swelling or pain.

Can my cat get cancer from a vaccination?

Yes, and this is true even more so with cats than dogs. They have this weird reaction where they can get something called an injection site sarcoma. And oftentimes it has to be addressed, maybe even surgically.

Is it safer to opt out of any non-core cat vaccines?

I wouldn't say it's necessarily safer. It's just that you need to discuss the lifestyle of your cat with your veterinarian and decide what the best plan is in terms of vaccines.

Are certain cat breeds prone to adverse reactions to cat vaccinations?

So this actually hasn't been studied all that extensively. There may be some genetic predisposition for certain cat breeds, but it's not really well-known.

If you still have other questions and you'd like to reach out to us, you can call us directly at (859) 202-3641, you can email us, or you can reach out on Facebook. But please do reach out, and we'll get back to you as fast as we can.

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