Pets vaccinations play a very important role in protecting your pets from many
dangerous and even fatal diseases. While our law requires all pets are vaccinated for rabies,
there are a number of other vaccinations that can protect your pets from serious diseases
that are easily preventable.
At Real Care Small Animal Clinic we have spent years educating people about the
benefits of pet vaccinations. This includes which vaccines are necessary, their schedule and
how they work to prevent diseases in pets. In so many years we have been asked many
question about pets vaccinations and we have compiled some of the most frequently asked
one’s for you here. This is only meant to be a general introduction to pet vaccinations. At
your next veterinary appointment, we will be happy to help you understand the
vaccination recommendations for your pets & clear doubts in case you have any.
1. What is a vaccine?
A vaccine is a preparation of either killed, altered microorganisms or a part of it
(antigen) that is administered into the body. They stimulate the immune system to
learn how to fight the microorganism so that if the microorganism is encountered
in the future, the pet will either not get sick or will have less severe illness.
2. What is immunity?
Immunity is a complex defense mechanism by which your pet is able to resist an
infection or its harmful consequences. The main component of this defense
mechanisam is white blood cells (WBC). The antigens which are unique to various
disease causing agents will cause white blood cells to respond by
producing antibodies. These antibodies defend your pet against the harmful
organism and remove it from the body. Some cells in the immune system have
memory, so that future exposure to the same antigen results in a much more rapid
Immunity is not absolute or always. Immunity can sometimes be stressed when
there is exposure to a particularly harmful strain of the microorganism, or when
the animal is unduly stressed or is immunosuppressed because of another disease
or certain drugs.
3. What is maternal immunity?
Newborn animals receive immunity from their mother, as maternal antibodies
which are called as passive immunity. Some part of this passive immunity is
transferred across the placenta while the pup or kitten is still in the uterus, but
most of it is transferred in the first milk or colostrum. But his maternal immunity is
only temporary. It declines steadily over the first few weeks of life and is almost
over by twelve weeks. The rate of decline is always variable.
4. Why are vaccines administered by injection and not tablets?
Some vaccines are given locally, for example into the nose, but most require
injection for maximum stimulation of the immune system. Some vaccines are
injected subcutaneously or just under the skin, others are injected into the muscles
5. Why is booster dose of vaccine given to pups?
It is impossible to know when a pup has lost the passive protection it gets from its
mother without complicated testing. If the maternal immunity declines fast it can
make the puppy susceptible to various infections at a very young age. A strong
maternal immunity can actually interfere with early vaccination so the first vaccine
timing is generally fixed and your vet knows it best. Especially with killed vaccines,
the first dose is a priming dose, and the second dose boosts the response to a
higher, longer-lasting level of immunity hence called booster dose.
6. How long does it take a vaccine to produce immunity?
The earliest phases of the immune response are being stimulated within a very
short time but it usually requires ten to fourteen days before a reasonable level of
protection is established. This time period also varies depending on a lot of factors.
So twenty one days time is what is considered to give enough protection after first
vaccination. Killed vaccines may take more time to provide adequate protection
and may do it properly only after the second dose.
Therefore, it is advisable to keep even a vaccinated pup away from pets or pups of
unknown vaccination history until atlest for 21 days or till it has finished its
7. Why is the same amount of vaccine given to small pets and large pets?
Vaccination doses are the same for all pets, regardless of size and age. When these
vaccines are tested, all pets in the test group receive the same dose of vaccine and
have been proven safe for pets of all sizes at the recommended dosage. Smaller
doses of vaccine may not adequately protect small pets. In addition, there is no
evidence that smaller doses of vaccinations are associated with a decreased
likelihood of vaccine reactions.
8. Why my pet needs to be completely healthy for receiving vaccination?
It is important that an animal is healthy when vaccinated to ensure proper
development of immunity. Sight illness may not cause any problem but in case of
chronic or severe infections vaccination can have disastrous effects. Your vet will
go for a checkup before vaccinating your pet and you need to brief him with
detailed history if have observed any issues with your pet.
9. Will vaccination make my pets sick?
Sometimes some pets develop mild lethargy 1 to 2 days after vaccination. When
killed vaccines are administered, containing an adjuvant, lump formation may
occur at the vaccination site. If this is painful or persists for more than a few weeks
with no decrease in size, consult your veterinarian.
Very rarely, severe reactions are seen i.e. hypersensitivity reactions. These will
usually occur within minutes, but may be delayed for a few hours. The pets may
salivate, vomit, develop diarrhea, hives, or have difficulty breathing. Should this
occur, consult your veterinarian immediately, it’s an emergency.
10. Do vaccines provide 100% protection to my pet?
Vaccines are highly successful in protecting the majority of pets against particular
diseases. But there are situations in which the pet’s immunity may be overcome
and vaccinated pets may still develop disease. Even if the pet is infected, there are
more chances for the pet to overcome the same if vaccinated as compared to non
What are the diseases against which the vaccines protect my pet?
Your pets receives vaccine called
A) DHPPiL+ Cv
D stands for Distemper ie Canine Distemper
H stands for Hepatitis or Canine Hepatitis
P stands for Parvovirus
Pi stands for Parainfluenza
L stands for Leptospirosis
And Cv for the Canine Corona virus
B) Anti Rabies Vaccine
Keep Loving… Keep Living… Keep Petting…