Essential Vaccinations: Vet Care for New Bedford Cats & Dogs

essential veterinary vaccinationsThere is a lot of new information available these days concerning vaccinations, both for people and pets. In the light of recent discoveries, many pet owners may be wondering which vaccinations are required, and which ones can be skipped after the initial protection is provided. The best way to know what type of vet care for cats and dogs is right for you and your pets is to work closely with a reputable animal hospital in Dartmouth and the surrounding area. Essential pet vaccinations might not just help your pet to live a long and healthy life; they may be required by law. New Bedford pet owners should consult with local authorities to ensure that they are in compliances with city, county, state, and federal requirements.

Core Vaccinations for Massachusetts Pets

While there are many similarities in the vaccines available in vet care for cats and dogs, there are still differences. For example, when it comes to most types of pets, the most common vaccinations are known as “core vaccinations,” such as rabies and hepatitis. For dogs specifically, other core vaccinations for New Bedford pet owners to learn about include parvovirus and distemper. Depending on the recommendations of your vet at the animal hospital in Dartmouth, other core vaccinations might be recommended. When it comes to cats, the essential pet vaccinations include calicivirus, herpesvirus, and panleukopenia. The rabies vaccine is frequently required by law by cities, counties, and states.

How often do these shots need to be provided? While the law will supersede most other schools of thought on this issue, some veterinarians recommend that vaccines be provided more or less frequently, depending on the lifestyle and species of the pet. For example, dogs that spend a lot of time at doggie daycare, frequent local dog parks, or travel often with their owner, the bordetella or canine flu shot is often required, along with other additional vaccines to protect the pet from common diseases and illnesses. Vaccines often start around six to eight weeks, depending on the health and lifestyle of the pet, and continue through the animal’s lifetime. Again, the frequency of booster vaccines will depend on the unique needs and requirements of the pet and the local law regulations.

Vaccines for Puppies, Kittens, and Adult Pets

At Anchor Animal Hospital in Dartmouth, we highly recommend starting your puppy or kitten off on the right paw with a recommended course of vaccines to protect them from serious diseases, illnesses, and infections. Some of those vaccines include parvovirus, rabies, and distemper for dogs and FeLV (feline leukemia), FVRCP (feline distemper), and rabies for cats. Speak with your veterinarian when you come in for basic vet care for cats and dogs to ensure that your pets have received all recommended and required vaccinations. Massachusetts State Law requires all cats and dogs to be vaccinated against rabies, which can spread through the saliva or blood of infected animals. Local pets can be exposed through contact with wildlife, including opossums, bats, raccoons, and rodents.

Feline leukemia and feline AIDS are two very serious diseases that affect cats in Massachusetts and all across the country. Spread through the contact with an infected cat’s saliva, blood, or other bodily fluids, these diseases are contagious and potentially fatal. They can also be spread directly from mother to kitten, so feline retroviral testing is highly recommended for kittens and other newly adopted cats. It is strongly recommended for New Bedford pet owners to test any new kitten or cat before introducing them into their family. It takes just ten minutes to perform the test at our clinic through a small blood sample. A negative test allows us to then provide your cat with the essential pet vaccinations required to prevent the development of these diseases in the future.

Leptospirosis is a very serious disease that can be passed on to humans through our pets. It is transmitted to dogs and cats from contact with wildlife or even through contact with infected urine in puddles or on the ground. Squirrels, raccoons, mice, and other animals can often be present in backyards, dog parks, and other areas without being seen. Farm animals can also be affected by infected urine and contract this disease. We recommend a leptospirosis vaccine for all pets due to the increased risk of exposure in the Southeastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island area. To learn more about these essential pet vaccinations, New Bedford pet owners can contact Anchor Animal Hospital in Dartmouth directly for additional information.

Vet Care for Cats and Dogs in Dartmouth

Since 1975, Anchor Animal Hospital has provided top-quality veterinary care to our patients throughout the Southcoast region. We offer a wide range of services, including vet care for cats and dogs. Regular check-ups, emergency veterinary services, professional treatments, pain management, surgical services, and much more are all offered, along with essential pet vaccinations and preventive treatments. If you would like to schedule an appointment with one of our team members for your pet, or if you want more information about Anchor Animal Hospital in Dartmouth, give us a call at 508-996-3731.