No matter how lovable your pet may seem to you, countless invisible enemies are waiting to do harm. Deadly microorganisms can infect animals that lack the necessary antibodies to fight back. That’s where cat and dog vaccinations come to the rescue. Here at Bluestar Animal Hospital & Grooming, we provide essential vaccinations for pets in St. Johns, Fruit Cove, Bartram Park, St Augustine, Durbin Crossing, Julington Creek Plantation area and Jacksonville, Southside, Baymeadows, Deerwood area.
How vaccinations help your pet
Inoculations are critical for their ability to spur the body to produce natural germ-killers called antibodies. Normally, the immune system makes antibodies in response to a disease threat, but first it must encounter that bug. In an unprotected animal, initial exposure could prove dangerous or even deadly. Cat and dog vaccinations represent the problem-causing organism without posing the risk of disease. They essentially fool the immune system into manufacturing antibodies against the perceived threat.
From puppy and kitten vaccinations to booster shots
Our veterinarians, Dr. Gutta and Dr. Sri in St. Johns, and Dr. Amar in Jacksonville, can begin administering puppy shots and kitten vaccinations at the age of six weeks. This is about the time these pets are being weaned, and thus losing antibodies they get through their mother’s milk. Kitten and puppy vaccinations are given several times during that formative first year, allowing protection to grow as your pet develops. Adult animals then need to receive booster shots to supplement vaccines that have lost their potency.
Kitten shots and puppy vaccinations may include both core immunizations and elective options. Core vaccinations are considered necessary for all pets, such as the rabies vaccine for dogs. Puppies also receive parvo, hepatitis, and canine distemper vaccinations. Cats receive feline distemper, rabies, calicivirus, and rhinotracheitis vaccinations.
Elective kitten or puppy vaccinations apply only to those animals whose lifestyles or surroundings place them at an elevated risk for specific diseases:
- Cats and dogs that spend time in boarding facilities, for example, should be vaccinated against Bordetella broncheseptica.
- Some dogs may benefit from Lyme disease or canine influenza vaccinations.
- Certain cats may need feline leukemia or FIV (feline immunodeficiency virus) immunization.
Our veterinarian can advise you as to whether your pet may need any elective vaccinations in addition to a core routine.
Get your pet vaccinated at either of our clinics
Vaccinations usually pose only minor risks for temporary side effects, such as fever or pain at the injection site. Allergic reactions are both rare and highly treatable. The immeasurable benefits your pet receives from proper vaccinations makes these shots a smart move for the animal’s health.
If you are wondering where to get dog shots or vaccines for cats, you don’t have to look far. Call Bluestar Animal Clinic at either of our offices – St. Johns (904) 720-4275, or Jacksonville (904) 720-4272 – to schedule core vaccinations, elective inoculations, or booster shots for your beloved pet.