Providing quality vet care for cats and dogs starts with a trip to Anchor Animal Hospital in Dartmouth. Many pet owners in Fall River and all across Southeastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island count on our services to ensure the health and well-being of their pets. Seasonal pet tips include vaccines and preventives for things like ticks and fleas, but include annual check-ups and ongoing care that is scheduled according to your pet’s specific needs. While there are a few vaccinations that are required in New England, there are others that may be provided based on the lifestyle and behavior of your pet. For this purpose, it is best to consult with a knowledgeable and experienced veterinary professional to provide comprehensive care and services.
Puppies get started with a basic course of vaccines that cover some of the most deadly diseases. Massachusetts State law requires all dogs to be vaccinated against rabies, which can be spread through the blood or saliva of infected animals, including wildlife such as bats, foxes, and raccoons. The first rabies vaccine is given around 16 weeks during a puppy visit at our animal hospital in Dartmouth. Other vaccinations are given earlier, such as the combination vaccine of Distemper, Parvo, Hepatitis, Parainfluenza, and Adenovirus. Distemper and parvovirus are a serious concern, which can result in a viral infection that has a high mortality rate. These vaccines are given at eight weeks with boosters at 12 and 16 weeks to complete the course.
Canine influenza is another vaccine that is offered for any puppies that take puppy training classes, visit the dog park, go to the pet store, or go to any other location where other dogs might be found. If you want to take your dog to the groomer or place them in boarding overnight for any reason, you will need an up-to-date canine influenza vaccine and proof of vaccination. Bordatella, which is also known as kennel cough, has similar recommendations and is required for groomers, boarding, and should be given for dogs that are in public or social situations with other dogs. Ask your vet about Lyme disease vaccines and options for leptospirosis, which can be passed to your dog from wildlife such as squirrels, raccoons, mice, and even farm animals through urine in puddles or just on the ground. There is a high-risk for exposure to dogs in this area.
Massachusetts State law also requires all cats to be vaccinated against rabies, which can be spread through the blood or saliva of infected animals. Local wildlife, such as raccoons, bats, opossums, and other rodents can expose your cat to rabies. Even indoor-only cats can be at risk if they get outdoors or if wildlife finds its way indoors. The first rabies vaccine is given to kittens at 16 weeks. Other concerns for cats include Feline Distemper, which is often noted as FVRCP, is a very serious, highly contagious, and potentially fatal feline disease. The vaccines are given to kittens at eight weeks, and boosters are offered at 12 and 16 weeks to complete the course. Pet owners in Fall River and the surrounding area can bring their kittens to Anchor Animal Hospital in Dartmouth for our vaccine, which also protects against feline herpesvirus and feline calicivirus, which are responsible for 80-90 percent of all upper respiratory infections in cats.
Feline leukemia or FeLV is another deadly virus that can be passed from cat to cat through the saliva or in nasal secretions from infected cats. Prolonged contact with infected cats, bite wounds, and even passing from the mother cat to the kittens are the most common ways that FeLV is contracted. This is a very serious disease, and most cats who have FeLV do not live for more than three years. While outdoor and indoor-outdoor cats are most at-risk, even indoor cats should be considered for this vaccine. Speak with your veterinarian about these vaccines and other seasonal pet tips to keep your cat safe throughout its lifetime.
Quality Vet Care for Cats and Dogs
Since 1975, Anchor Animal Hospital in Dartmouth has strived to increase our knowledge, use of technology, and options for pet owners in the Southcoast region. While we do offer a wide range of services and vet care for cats and dogs, we also provide services for small animals, including rabbits, Guinea pigs, rats, mice, hamsters, and gerbils. If you would like to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced veterinary staff, please give us a call at 508-996-3731. We can answer any questions you might have about seasonal pet tips and pet care or provide you with more information about our services.