Kittens can be vaccinated from six weeks of age with the second shot 3-5 weeks later. Routinely we protect kittens against Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Panleukopenia Virus (RCP) and outdoor cats are protected against Feline Leukemia Virus (FeLV). Cats that live inside do not need to be protected against FeLV provided they are within a stable cat population and that none of the other feline housemates go outside.
Vaccinations for Chlamydia are available but are generally only recommended for breeding cats.
There are many viruses that cats may suffer from that currently do not have an effective vaccination such as Feline Immundeficiency Virus (FIV) and Feline CoronaVirus (FIP).
Infection with Rhinotracheitis and Calicivirus (RC) results in an upper respiratory disease called Cat Flu which shows classically in kittens as sticky eyes and a lot of sneezing, generally with a lot of snot being produced. Kittens can have a very high temperature and be extremely miserable with this, but worse still infections can lead to eyes being so badly damaged they require removal, or kittens going blind, as well as lifelong infection with the disease. Cat Flu is endemic in the wild cat population of Ireland and as such is very common in many rescued kittens. Once your kitten is recovered from cat flu they may be vaccinated against it as this will reduce the severity of the disease during future bouts.
Panluekopaeinia Virus is to cats as Parvovirus to dogs and just as fatal.
Infection with FeLV also has long lasting effects, however it is a bit more sinister in that it can lead cats to have shorter lifespans, and increase their risk of developing infections as well as developing certain types of tumours such as lymphoma. Adult cats with chronic infections should be tested for FeLV before vaccinating against it, as, unlike RCP, if a cat has FeLV already the vaccinating against it will have no effect.
Vaccinating Adult Cats
Adult cats will require a yearly vaccination for Rhinotracheitis and Calicivirus and FeLV. Panleukopaeina will be required once every three years.
Vaccines are covered in all of our PetCare plans and we can send you reminders too!