Unfortunately, there are some nasty infectious diseases that cause serious illness in our furry friends. Many of these diseases can be life threatening in pets that have no immunity.
There are two ways immunity can be achieved;
- By contracting the disease and mounting an immune response. Unfortunately, many patients can become very ill or even die before this happens
- Using vaccines to mimic the effect of the disease WITHOUT actually contracting the disease to boost the immune system and provide protective antibodies
We are very fortunate to have vaccines in this country that have a very wide safety margin and so we advise vaccinations in all young pets to provide immunity to disease and to older pets DEPENDING ON THEIR RISK STATUS.
Not all older pets require annual boosters BUT all older pets need ANNUAL HEALTH CHECKS so that we can discuss all their preventative health needs (including vaccination).
There has been a lot of concern about the risks of vaccinations in recent times. In reality, all the pet vaccines we have available in this country are very safe but it makes sense not to give any medication without weighing up the risks and benefits- this applied to vaccines as well.
At Mona Vale Vets we are very mindful of only giving the right medications, at the right dose at the right time FOR EVERY PET.
Recent advances have made testing your pet’s immunity to most of the major infectious diseases so much easier and so we encourage owners to consider this IF THERE IS ANY CHANCE OF A HIGHER RISK FROM VACCINATION in any individual pet. This is called Titre Testing and involves taking a blood test and getting it analysed for antibodies to whatever infectious disease we need to protect against.
Titre testing is a proven reliable immunity measure in dogs for the 3 core infectious diseases (Canine Distemper, Hepatitis and Parvovirus), in cats against Feline enteritis (Panleucopenia) and available but less definitive for the 2 core feline respiratory diseases (Feline Herpesvirus and Feline Calicivirus)
Titre testing is available for any pet and can help guide your decision regarding vaccinating your pet.
At Mona Vale Vets, we follow the World Small Animal Association Recommendations for vaccinations and so we will routinely give vaccinations according to this protocol. In most pets, titre testing is not needed when following these guidelines as all the research and testing has been done to establish what the minimum requirements for protective immunity is likely to be HOWEVER, we will advise titre testing in ANY pet at higher risk of adverse effects to vaccines.