Pet vaccinations have always been and continue to be a very controversial subject. Traditional medicine provides a schedule of regular vaccines that should be administered every few years, while holistic medicine says vaccines are not necessary and can cause more problems than they solve. When deciding whether or not to vaccinate your pet, here are some things to consider:
What is Your Pet's Lifestyle?
If your pet spends time in a kennel with a lot of other animals, then vaccinations are a must. There are many diseases that are passed around kennels because of the sheer number of animals under one roof, including distemper, influenza, parasites, heartworms, kennel cough, and more.
But kennels aren't the only place where these diseases can be contracted. Dog parks, shelters, shows, and anywhere else your pet may be exposed to a lot of other animals will put your pet at risk.
How old is Your Pet?
Nursing animals are generally protected from diseases because of the antibodies in their mother's milk. Vaccinations aren't necessary for them until they stop nursing.
If your pet is older and has received regular vaccines throughout their life, then their immune system will be built up enough that they don't need additional vaccines at this point. Always talk to your vet about their vaccination history before giving vaccines. More is not always better.
What Does the Law Say?
Every state is different, so you will have to educate yourself on the laws where you live, but your vet will know the answer. The vaccination for rabies is required by almost every state, but most states require additional vaccines if you want to register your pet. Rabies can be dangerous and even deadly for pets and their owners, which is why it is required by law in most states.
Where do You Live?
Different areas contain risks for different diseases in animals. For example, some areas are more prone to Lyme disease because of the high number of ticks. Talk to your vet about the risks in your area in order to avoid over-vaccinating your pet.
Vaccinations have proven over the years to prevent diseases and keep your pet healthy. Just keep in mind that every pet is different and you should always discuss the pros and cons of each vaccine with your vet before vaccinating them.
After vaccinating, observe your pet for possible side effects. Follow these simple guidelines and your pet is sure to live a long and disease-free life. Contact a vet office like Columbine Animal Hospital & Emergency Clinic for more information and assistance.