What Are The Required Vaccines For a Cat?
Since many cats are completely indoor pets, some owners forget how vaccines can still be essential. Having had indoor cats most of my life, I was definitely one of those people who never thought much about vet visits and basic shots for my cat, Guinevere.
It seemed expensive and unnecessary, so I avoided them. Once Maddie came along, I decided to be a vigilant cat mom as I wanted the best for this little kitten who was dependent on me for a long healthy life.
Even if your cat rarely comes into contact with the outside world, vaccines are still an important part of a feline health regimen. Your cat could develop diseases from foregin bodies you accidentally bring in, at the groomer, at the vet, from a stray or even out in the yard.
These are the basic shots and health care items a cat needs and why.
Annual Vet Visits
Whether you have a new kitten or are adopting a senior cat, an annual visit to the veterinarian is important to keep them healthy. These visits are great times to ask questions, have the vet get to know your cat and establish a relationship. Having an ongoing relationship with your vet is important so in case something does happen, you have that resource there to help.
Just like humans, some cats may go their entire lives without major issues, while others are plagued with health concerns from cradle to grave. You just don’t know what will happen over the course of your cat's life so getting that early and regular vet visit started is the best thing you can do for your cat.
Necessary Basic Shots
Shots and vaccines are another basic component to maintaining your cat’s health.
Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, and Panleukopenia (FVRCP)
Bordetella, or kennel cough
Feline Leukemia (FeLV)
As with any vaccine, these do not guarantee 100% protection. However, they are highly effective and have been in circulation for quite a whole. Even if you don’t see your cat coming into contact with any outside viruses or bacteria, it’s always better to be safe than sorry! It is also always easier to prevent the virus than to deal with a sick cat later and possibly have to put the cat down due to illness.
Talk to your vet and see what they recommend and what frequency they will administer. After any vaccine, expect some side effects and give your cat time to rest and recover.
If you can’t afford a vet visit, check out national companies such as Tractor Supply, PetSmart, PetCo, and local pet stores for their vaccine clinics and prices. Many customers here at the cat spa use these services and are very pleased with the quick service and menu of options. Some communities offer low cost rabies clinics also.
Remember, you are your cat’s first line of defence against these preventable diseases!
Rock the Cat Spa owner Cari Thompson is a life-long cat lover. When she's not running the luxury cat spa & hotel, she's playing with her cat, Daphne. She writes weekly blogs on cat behavior, health, and care. To learn more about her, check out the About Me page!