Vaccinations

At Paws of the Rockies Animal Hospital, we believe that a comprehensive vaccination protocol is essential to maintaining the health of your pet. Vaccinations stimulate your pets immune system to produce antibodies. These antibodies are important in defending the body against common, yet specific diseases. Without proper vaccination, your pet is not protected. Vaccinations are especially important for young puppies and kittens. However, adults and senior pets also greatly benefit from vaccinations. At Paws of the Rockies Animal Hospital, we do not believe in over-vaccinating your pet. A vaccine risk assessment (VRA) is performed annually by our veterinarians so that an appropriate vaccine protocol may be individualized for your pet. A veterinary exam will be performed prior to giving any vaccinations to ensure your pet is healthy and to discuss any risks of the vaccine.

CANINE CORE VACCINES
DA2PP( Distemper Combo)- This vaccination includes several viral organisms that help protect the health of your pet. Distemper, Adenovirus, Parainfluenza and Parvovirus are viral organisms that can cause gastrointestinal, respiratory, neurologic and liver problems in an unvaccinated patient. We recommend your puppy receive this vaccine at 8, 12 and 16 weeks of age. This is then repeated one year later. Based on your pet’s VRA, he/she will then receive this vaccine annually to every three years.

Bordetella- This vaccine protects against infectious tracheobronchitis, also known as kennel cough. An unvaccinated dog may succumb to severe illness. A vaccinated dog may still acquire Bordetella, however the symptoms are much less severe and tend to be self-limiting. The veterinarians at Paws of the Rockies highly recommend Bordetella vaccination for all dogs, due to the highly contagious nature of this bacteria. Dogs that attend obedience classes, doggy day care, dog park facilities, groomers on a frequent basis or a boarding facility should have a Bordetella vaccination every 6-12 months. This vaccine can be administered orally or as an injection.

Rabies- Rabies is a highly contagious and deadly disease when contracted. Vaccination is the only effective means of preventing disease in your pet. In addition, because this disease can be transmitted to humans, vaccination of your dog is required by law. Dogs must be 16 weeks of age to receive their first Rabies virus vaccine. This vaccine will need to be repeated in 1 year. In Larimer County, all subsequent Rabies vaccinations are valid for three years.

Leptospirosis- This vaccine is recommended for those dogs determined to be at a higher risk for acquiring the disease. This bacteria occurs when your dog comes into contact with infected urine or environment, mainly from raccoons or other wildlife. This infection can be transmitted to humans. Initially, this vaccine is given as two boosters. Thereafter, the vaccine is given annually.

CANINE NON-CORE VACCINES
Canine Influenza Vaccine for Dogs- Canine Influenza (H3N8) is a highly contagious viral infection spread by aerosolized respiratory secretions and contact with contaminated objects. Virtually all dogs that are exposed to H3N8 become infected with the virus. Approximately 80% develop clinical signs of disease, while the other 20% that do not exhibit clinical signs may still shed the virus and spread infection. The vaccine was created to aid in the control of canine influenza. Although the vaccine may not prevent infection altogether, it will reduce the severity and duration of clinical illness, reduce the amount of virus shed as well as shorten the shedding interval. Initially, a series of 2 vaccines should be given, approximately 2-4 weeks apart. Annual revaccination is recommended thereafter.

Rattlesnake- This vaccine is recommended for dogs that may come in contact with rattlesnakes where they live, work or play. The vaccine generates protective antibodies against rattlesnake venom. Vaccinated dogs experience less pain and have reduced risk of permanent injury from the rattlesnake bite. Even a vaccinated dog should be taken to a veterinarian for evaluation and care as soon as possible following the snakebite. Initially, this vaccine is given as two boosters. Thereafter, the vaccine is given semi-annually or annually depending on exposure risk.

FELINE CORE VACCINES
FVRCP (Distemper Combo)- This vaccination includes several viral organisms that help protect the health of your pet. Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis, Calicivirus, and Panleukopenia virus are viral organisms that can cause upper respiratory, gastrointestinal and neurologic problems in an unvaccinated cat. We recommend your kitten receive this vaccine at 8, 12 and 16 weeks of age. This is then repeated one year later. Based on your pet’s VRA, he/she will then receive this vaccine annually to every three years.

Rabies- Rabies is a highly contagious and deadly disease when contracted. Vaccination is the only effective means of preventing disease in your pet. In addition, because this disease can be transmitted to humans, vaccination of your cat is required by law. Cats must be 16 weeks of age to receive their first Rabies virus vaccine. This vaccine will need to be repeated in 1 year. In Larimer County, all subsequent Rabies vaccinations are valid for three years. There was a one year rabies vaccine (canary pox) for cats that was thought to provide a lower risk for sarcomas in cats however, the risk data did not hold true, and this vaccine is no longer available.

FELINE NON-CORE VACCINES
Feline Leukemia- Feline leukemia (FeLV) infection is a major cause of illness and death in cats. FeLV infections affect cats by interfering with their immune system’s ability to fight off infections. Everyday bacteria and viruses can cause severe disease in infected cats. Various types of cancers and blood diseases are much more common in cats infected with leukemia virus. Therefore, outdoor cats, indoor/outdoor cats and indoor cats that have contact with outdoor cats, should receive the FeLV vaccine. We require that your cat be tested for the presence of leukemia virus before vaccinating. If your cat is negative on testing, the FeLV vaccine can be given. Initially, two boosters are given. After that, this vaccine is given every one to two years