Pet Vaccinations: Individualized Protection for Your Pet

Pet Vaccinations at Northwest Neighborhood Veterinary Hospital

When it comes to pet vaccines, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all protocol. As a matter of fact, a dog or cat could require different vaccinations based upon a number of factors, including:

  • Where in the United States does the pet live?
  • Does the pet travel and, if so, where and how often?
  • If the pet is a dog, does he or she go to the dog park, kennel, or groomer?
  • If the pet is a cat, does he or she go outdoors or live with another cat that does?

At Northwest Neighborhood Veterinary Hospital, we understand that you want your pet to be protected but not over-vaccinated. That’s why our veterinarians regularly review ongoing veterinary research and adjust our vaccination protocols accordingly.

We follow the vaccination guidelines of the American Veterinary Medical Association, the American Animal Hospital Association, and the American Association of Feline Practitioners. We will work with you to understand your pet’s lifestyle and risk factors and recommend only the pet vaccinations he or she needs.

Kitten Vaccinations

Prior to administering any vaccinations, we will test your kitten for feline leukemia and FIV to ensure that he or she is disease free. Then, at the age of 6–8 weeks, we will begin administering kitten vaccines every 3–4 weeks until they are completed at the age of 16 weeks. Here are the kitten vaccinations we recommend:

  • FVRCCP—This vaccination protects against feline viral rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, Chlamydia psittaci, and panleukopenia. It will be given to your kitten every 3–4 weeks until the series is complete.
  • Feline leukemia vaccine—We recommend that all kittens receive this vaccination as a form of protection in case they accidentally get outdoors or it’s later decided that they will be indoor/outdoor cats. This vaccination is administered in a series of two, 3–4 weeks apart.
  • Rabies vaccine—This is the final vaccination your kitten will receive.

Adult Cat Vaccinations

In order to provide our feline patients with only the safest of veterinary care, we primarily use non-adjuvanted vaccines. These have been found to minimize the likelihood of an adverse reaction in cats. Here are the cat vaccines we recommend:

  • FVRCCP—Once a cat reaches 1 year of age, he or she will require a booster for this vaccine. After that, it will be administered every 3 years. This vaccine offers protection from feline viral rhinotracheitis, calicivirus, Chlamydia psittaci, and panleukopenia.
  • Rabies vaccine—This vaccination is required by law and is administered annually.
  • Feline leukemia vaccine—If your cat goes outside or is exposed to another feline that does, then we recommend that he or she receive this vaccination each year.

Puppy Vaccinations

Your puppy will begin receiving vaccinations between 6–8 weeks of age. They will be administered every 3–4 weeks, until they are completed at the age of 16 weeks. Here are the puppy vaccinations our veterinarians recommend:

  • DA2PP—This vaccination protects against canine distemper, adenovirus 2, parvovirus, and parainfluenza. It will be given to your puppy every 3–4 weeks until the series is complete.
  • Bordetella—This vaccination is given at around 12 weeks of age. It will help protect your puppy from the highly contagious upper respiratory disease known as kennel cough.
  • Leptospirosis vaccine—The bacteria that causes this disease is spread through the urine of infected animals. Because Portland is so friendly to pets and wildlife, it’s essential that your puppy be protected. This dog vaccine is administered at the last two puppy appointments.
  • Rabies vaccine—This vaccine is required by law. It is administered once, between the ages of 4–6 months.

Adult Dog Vaccinations

Here are the dog vaccines our veterinarians may recommend for your canine:

  • DA2PP—Once a dog reaches the ages of 1 and 2 years, he or she will require a booster for this vaccine. After that, the vaccination will be administered every 3 years. It protects against canine distemper, adenovirus 2, parvovirus, and parainfluenza.
  • Rabies vaccine—This vaccination is required by law. A dog will require a booster 1 year after the initial rabies vaccine was given, and then every 3 years there after.
  • Bordetella and leptospirosis vaccines—Depending upon your dog’s lifestyle and risk factors, our veterinarians may recommend these vaccines. If they are necessary, they will be provided annually.

Ferret Vaccinations

Here are the vaccinations that our veterinarians recommend for ferrets:

  • Rabies vaccine—This vaccination is required by law and is administered annually.
  • Distemper—While this vaccination is not required, we may recommend it annually for your ferret’s protection, depending on exposure risk. Portland is a very pet-friendly town, and it is possible for you to accidentally carry this disease home to your ferret.

Pet vaccinations are just one component of your pet’s overall wellness plan. To learn more about additional steps you can take to promote good pet health, please visit these resources: