What do we recommend?
For the first year: Kittens and Juniors
Wellness programs begin between 6 and 10 weeks of age with their first physical exam during which the first of a series of 3 FVRCP vaccines are administered. FVRCP stands for Feline Viral Rhinotracheitis Calcivirus Panleukopenia, and these diseases are commonly called feline distemper. These diseases are highly contagious and very dangerous for your kitten. The distemper vaccine series must be boostered every 3-4 weeks for the first three vaccines to become effective for twelve months. At each appointment, our doctors will perform a physical exam to be certain your kitten is thriving during the most important months of his or her growth and development.
We also recommend checking a stool sample for intestinal parasites as these parasites can inhibit your kitten’s ability to grow and thrive. Some of these parasites are also transmissible to humans and may cause serious health threats to you and your family. Examples of such parasites include roundworms, tapeworms, giardia, and coccidia. These are the four most common parasites that kittens are infected with, and they can be treated with medication. Should your kitten test positive for a parasite, your veterinarian will set up a medication and retesting schedule to check them until they are free of parasites.
The Rabies vaccine is administered once your kitten has reached a certain age and weight, and remains effective for one year for the first vaccine. Following the first year, your veterinarian will help you plan an appropriate vaccine program. Rabies is considered the most dangerous disease that can be transmitted from your pet to you. Vaccination for Rabies is required by New York State law. Rabies is fatal to any pet or human who contracts it. Over 50,000 people die each year due to Rabies in the world.
Feline Leukemia has become a much discussed topic in the veterinary world. Feline Leukemia is a deadly disease that causes serious health complications ranging from various forms of cancer to life compromising secondary conditions. Leukemia affects your cat’s immune system, and it is incurable. Your kitten can be tested for this disease at three months, and he or she can begin the vaccination series to prevent Feline Leukemia with a series of two vaccines 3-4 weeks apart that will be effective for 12 months. Annual boosters are required to maintain protection.
We recommend that you spay or neuter your companion in the first year when the doctor recommends. We require that kittens are tested for feline leukemia and feline immunodeficiency virus (felv and fiv) before they are spayed or neutered as the presence of these diseases may cause life threatening complications for surgery. Most female kittens should be spayed around 5 or 6 months of age before their first heat cycle. This is also the age that male kittens begin to show maturity, and may begin “marking” their territory. A male cat’s urine may begin to smell differently (Tom cat smell), and he may begin to want to wander outside to find a mate. The technical term for a spay is Ovariohysterectomy, and this is a surgery done under general anesthesia. The female reproductive organs are surgically removed. The term for a male is Castration, and the testicles are removed. Your cat is with us for the day, and you will be carefully instructed for follow up care at the time of discharge.
Young adults and Mature Cats:
We recommend annual wellness exams with a vaccination schedule appropriate for your companion that protects their health. We also recommend annual internal parasite exams to make sure your cat stays healthy and happy. We recommend monthly parasite protection such as Revolution to kill common parasites and fleas.
Senior and Geriatric Cats:
We recommend wellness exams every six months with annual screening with a senior panel that includes blood testing, urine testing, and fecal analysis. This testing allows us to establish a baseline for your companion’s health, and to carefully check for underlying disease processes. These senior tests help us check for problems with your pet’s thyroid, for early kidney or liver disease, for urinary problems, blood in the stool, and several other concerns. Early detection and treatment can extend your friend’s life, and timely treatment can be less costly. Please talk to your doctor about the wellness plan that works best for you and your family.
The rabies vaccine is required by New York State Law, and it protects your pet from contracting this fatal disease. The initial rabies vaccine is good for one year, and the vaccine is good for three years for each subsequent vaccination.
The feline leukemia vaccine is strongly recommended for your cat. Infection with Feline Leukemia Virus(FeLV) can cause serious health complications for your pet ranging from cancerous conditions to secondary infections resulting from damage to their immune systems. The vaccine is initially given as two shots 3-4 weeks apart and then updated as your veterinarian recommends. Your veterinarian can develop a plan with you to address your pet’s individual needs.
This combination vaccine is sometimes called the feline distemper vaccine. The FVRCP vaccine protects cats against three very serious diseases. Feline viral rhinotracheitis is a virus that causes upper respiratory infections in cats. Symptoms include sneezing, nasal discharge, eye discharge, loss of appetite, coughing, and fever. Kittens and senior cats are at a higher risk for this disease, but effective treatment for any cat can be difficult. Feline calcivirus is also an upper respiratory infection. Like feline viral rhinotracheitis, it is highly contagious and can lead to chronic disease. Symptoms may include coughing, nasal discharge, blisters and ulcers in the mouth, pneumonia, and fever. Feline panleukopenia is sometimes called feline distemper. This virus is potentially fatal, and successful treatment can be difficult. Symptoms may include lethargy, vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration, fever, and death. Vaccinating your cats will protect them against these diseases and help them lead a higher quality life.