Cat Vaccination Myths and Misunderstandings


That cute kitten you’ve just adopted relies on you to maintain them completely satisfied and healthy, which implies providing a cat-friendly home, a healthy weight-reduction plan, and plenty of love. One other vital aspect of this care is vaccination. Nevertheless, it’s common for cat guardians to misunderstand which cats need which vaccines and when, plus what protection vaccination offers. So, let’s explore some common myths and misunderstandings to set the record straight about cat vaccination.

Myth: Kitten vaccines protect for all times

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There may be a widely held misunderstanding that vaccinating a kitten gives them immunity for all times. This is fake. Many perfectly well-meaning cat parents don’t get their cats booster shots because they don’t realize immunity wanes with time.

Booster shots are vital to take care of the cat’s protection against disease. We all know this by blood antibody titers, which show levels fall over time to the purpose where they are not any longer detectable.

Once this happens, if the cat encounters infection, they’re potentially in danger since the immune system may not remember the right way to fight against the bug.

How long a cat stays protected varies between individuals, and there are numerous variable aspects that influence this. So moderately than put the cat through blood tests every year, manufacturers did numerous research to envision out the typical protection time and when a booster dose is required.

It is that this data that the vet uses when advising a cat parent that their cat needs one other shot.

Myth: Older cats not need vaccination

Your senior cat has been vaccinated all their life. Surely, of their old age, they’ve built up enough immunity to skip the booster?

Actually, no. While it is a logical argument, sadly this isn’t the case.

Firstly, even with a healthy, strong immune system, the protection drops over time and wishes “boosting.”

Secondly, older animals have weaker immune systems. This implies they’re less capable of fight infections and depend more on vaccine protection, moderately than less. Thus, it becomes more vital, not less, for seniors to get their booster shot.

Myth: Indoor cats don’t should be vaccinated

Flawed! (Well, mostly.)

A few of the nastier viruses, corresponding to feline panleukopenia virus, are comparable to a super-villain when it comes to toughness. They’ll survive on sidewalks in all weathers for long periods of time. Should you walk on the virus, you’ll be able to bring it indoors in your shoes, so not even indoor cats are protected.

Therein lies the crunch. An indoor cat is at low risk but not no risk. Nevertheless, your veterinarian will risk asses the cat and will opt out of vaccinating against conditions that require close contact to spread, corresponding to feline leukemia virus.

Myth: We over-vaccinate cats

Many individuals worry about over-vaccination in pets. It’s a priority veterinarians take very seriously. Because of this vets avoid unnecessary vaccinations by adapting vaccine protocols to satisfy each individual cat’s risk factor and the way long immunity lasts to a specific virus.

To do that, vets divide the vaccine components into core and non-core. This simply means essential and non-essential. For instance, vaccination against rabies is core, whereas protection against feline leukemia virus is non-core for an indoor cat.

By way of how often to repeat a dose with a booster shot, this is set by how long protection lasts. For instance, protection against feline leukemia lasts one 12 months, and requires a yearly booster, while protection against cat flu lasts for 3 years.

Myth: Vaccines do more harm than good

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Every responsible cat parent should make an informed decision about what’s best for his or her pet as a person. Nevertheless, when weighing up the professionals and cons of vaccination, it’s relevant to know the advantages far outweigh the risks.

Diseases corresponding to cat flu, distemper, and feline leukemia are still on the market and have life-changing consequences. Balance this against the risks of vaccination which could be divided into common-but-mild reactions and rare-but-serious, as outlined below.


After a vaccine, around one in 10 cats experience a soft swelling on the injection site. That is a short lived lump that goes away after a few weeks and nothing to fret about.


This response mainly affects young kittens, normally at their first vaccination. It’s regarded as on account of the Calici virus ingredient — a part of cat flu — and the immune system registering the vaccine.

Affected kittens may run a light fever, limp, and go off their food. The effect lasts for 2 to a few days after which resolves of its own accord.

It will likely be a one-off event and doesn’t recur with subsequent vaccines.

Feline Injection Site Sarcomas (FISS)

There isn’t a denying these injection-related tumors are serious. Studies show that it is a rare complication of injection, affecting roughly one to 4 in every 100,000 cats.

Since vaccines are one of the crucial steadily administered injections, FISS has turn into linked to vaccination — but can occasionally occur with other injections, corresponding to long-acting antibiotics or steroids.

To scale back this risk, vets take care to tailor vaccine protocols to the person to cut back unnecessary vaccinations. In addition they give vaccines in an extremity, corresponding to a back leg, and every year record where the injection was placed, so any suspicious swelling could be linked back to the injection and monitored.

When all’s said and done, it’s as much as each cat parent to make an informed decision about what’s best for his or her pet. But just be sure you base that call on the facts, moderately than fiction, of cat vaccinations.


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