Kittens start receiving vaccinations at 8-9 weeks of age. All previously unvaccinated cats and kittens need additional vaccination and boosters approximately 3 weeks later. This must be accomplished in order for the vaccines to be effective.
**ALL cats and kittens should be tested for Feline Leukemia (FeLV) and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV). These viruses are potentially fatal and are contagious to other cats. Both viruses can be transmitted to kittens from their mother before they are born. If we know that a cat is infected with one of these viruses, we can be proactive in controlling the cat’s environment and managing clinical signs for optimal longevity and good health.
Rabies: Cats are vaccinated against rabies at 12 weeks of age and then every 1-3 years, depending on whether a 1 year or 3 year vaccine is used (required by Texas law). Rabies is transmitted from an infected animal via a bite wound. This disease is 100% fatal, and is transmissible to humans.
CVRP (Feline Distemper Virus): This is a combination vaccine-meaning one dose vaccinates against several viruses. It includes Feline Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, Panleukopenia and Psittaci Viruses. Kittens receive this vaccine at 8-9 weeks of age, then every 3-4 weeks until 16 weeks of age. They receive a booster 1 year later and then it is administered every 3 years thereafter. If an unvaccinated adult comes in, it needs an initial vaccine and a booster 3 weeks later. Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus and Psittaci Viruses are upper respiratory viruses. Feline Panleukopenia is a virus affecting the GI system, causing vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration and possibly death.
FeLV (Feline Leukemia): This vaccine is given initially at 9 weeks of age and boostered at 12 weeks of age. After this initial series, cats are given the vaccine annually. Unvaccinated adults need the initial vaccine and a booster 3 weeks later. This viral infection is transmitted from cat to cat by grooming, mating, biting, sharing litter boxes/food bowls (rarely transmitted by the sharing of litter boxes/food bowls). Infection is fatal – typically within 1 -2 years.
Please see our WELLNESS CARE section for more information about the care of your cat and the different stages of his/her life.
Babcock Hills Veterinary Hospital, your San Antonio veterinary hospital at 6600 Prue Road.