Our pets are an integral part of the family! As such, we always want to do as much as we can to keep them fit and healthy all year round. This year’s World Veterinary Day takes place on the 27th April, and is set to highlight the value of vaccinations* for the health of pets around the world. With this in mind, here at The Insurance Emporium, we’ve been doing research into animal vaccines. Read on to learn what they do and why vaccinating your pet could be so important!

Vaccinating your pet - small puppy

Disease protection

The reason vaccinations are available for pets is to help protect them from potentially deadly diseases. For dogs, the main vaccines are against parvovirus, canine distemper, leptospirosis and infectious canine hepatitis. Vaccinations for cats usually cover cat flu, feline infectious enteritis, feline chlamydophilosis and feline leukaemia virus.

When are they given?

At the very beginning of their lives, puppies and kittens will receive some defence against disease from their mothers’ milk. After two or three weeks, however, this will begin to wear away, which is the time they should begin to receive their first vaccinations. Until a puppy or kitten has been fully vaccinated, involving two sets of injections, it’s best to keep them indoors and away from unvaccinated pets.

Vaccinating your pet - grey cat

Going forward

Whilst this initial course will set your furry friend up for a healthy start, they will require boosters either yearly or every three years. It’s important to ensure you keep up to date with these, otherwise your pet might lose the immunity they’ve built up against some nasty diseases. Your vet should provide you with a record card that they’ll update after each vaccination so you can keep on top of this. 

How do they work?

Pet vaccinations work in exactly the same way as those given to humans. They introduce a dead or weaker version of a disease, which isn’t strong enough to cause infection. This encourages your pet’s body to produce antibodies which will fight the virus. Vaccinations are a way of training your pet’s immune system – if they’ve created the antibodies once, they’ll retain the memory of them.

Vaccinating your pet - happy beagle puppy

Can they still get a disease after a vaccination?

The answer to that is yes, your cat or dog can still pick up a disease they’ve been vaccinated against. However, because the vaccination will have created the memory of the disease within their immune system, they’ll be able to produce the antibodies straight away. So if they come into contact with the disease again, their body should be ready to fight it, and the effects might not be as severe!

Vaccinating your pet is a really important part of responsible pet ownership, and doing so can help keep them fighting fit for all your adventures together! Something else you might want to consider is taking out pet insurance for your four-legged friend. At The Insurance Emporium, we offer flexible dog and cat insurance^ to suit all lifestyles and budgets, with cover up to £8,000 for Vet’s Fees as a Standard Benefit†. You could also get up to 30% discount•. Head to The Insurance Emporium today to find out more!  

* The Insurance Emporium Pet Insurance policies do not provide cover or payment for routine vaccinations.

^ The Insurance Emporium will provide cover for unvaccinated dogs and cats. However, illnesses that could have been prevented by routine vaccinations will not be covered. For more information please see the product pages on our website.

† Cover up to £8,000 for Vet’s Fees available on lunar monthly Lifetime Gold policies.

• The 30% discount is made up of 20% Introductory Discount plus 10% Multi-pet Discount (if appropriate). The Introductory Discount is available for the first 12 premium payments on lunar and calendar monthly policies or one premium payment on annual policies.

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